Estate Manager Reveals Secrets of the Rich and Powerful
Imagine a job that pays six figures and provides you with the most lavish living accommodations in the world, trips to exotic locations, and unlimited shopping excursions. Sounds too good to be true? Well, there is a down side. You might also find yourself on call 24/7 trying to meet the most excruciating of demands, and tottering around in someone else’s too small Manolo Blahnik’s in an effort to break them in.
It’s all in a day’s work for an Estate Manager, according to Bryan Peele, who, as one of the most prominent EMs in the world, founded the Estate Manager’s Coalition, a resource for his colleagues based right here in Beverly Hills. It not only holds classes and workshops in diverse subjects like home security, art assessment, etiquette, diamond polishing and linen care, but also connects Estate Managers with luxury service providers worldwide, such as Wolfgang Puck to Frette linens to Bentley autos to the Four Seasons to FlexJets.
In essence, Estate Managers have to wear a thousand different hats. Peele says that they have to anticipate their employer’s needs, and know how to fulfill them in advance. Duties vary from chauffeuring kids to school and parents to and from the airport, planning major events and parties, selecting menus and wines to go with them, overseeing the landscaping and gardening and even serving as a stylist. Peele notes he’s been called upon to organize his client’s closets and provide them with Look Books, so they’ll know how to put outfits from their extensive wardrobes together.
So what kind of training do you need if this type of work appeals to you? “Estate managers come from all sorts of backgrounds,” Peele says, mentioning that retired military people often excel because of their organization and security aptitudes. People who have been involved in the hospitality, travel, restaurant and event planning industries also excel at the job. Peele had been working for Delta airlines, selecting entertainment options for passengers when the opportunity to manage a great estate came up.
Admittedly, it’s not the ideal job for everyone, but it’s “perfect for someone who loves variety, or, like me, has ADD,” Peele laughs. “My job is to help set people up for greatness. What could be more satisfying than that?” See more of the many tasks an estate manager fulfills in my gallery on HGTV.com.