Angels without wings and with their feet on the ground
Lourdes Carbó coordinates and trains the people that make the daily life of the richest people in the world easier
M. Sardà – Barcelona
The Lifestyle Institute trains exclusive Personal Angels for exclusive people. It was founded in 2021 by Lourdes Carbó, co-founder and CEO of Alberta La Grup, the first agency in Spain, and one of few in the world, that specialises in Personal Angels: men and women who provide assistance to HNWI and UNHWI (high and ultra high net worth individuals), meaning wealthy or very wealthy individuals belonging to the 1% of the richest people in the world.
They work in a highly discreet way, but always with a lot of creativity and absolute efficiency and are expect to provide well-rounded and effective services. “We help individuals or families to organize their private lives. These are people or families that need all the moving pieces to come together so that their private lives work properly”, Carbó explains. She also mentions that she usually receives between five – the lowest – and fifteen – the highest – requests from clients around the world and “they have to be ready for whenever they need them”.
But what is true purpose of Personal Angels? Carbó’s answer is very clear: “We take care of any tasks that are legal and ethical”. She explains that they work in coordination with a dedicated team for each family or individual, which means that they work in harmony with chauffeurs, babysitters, chefs, butlers, house managers and any other staff. However, they never take care of any corporate or business-related tasks, nor do they do tasks belonging to the team-members of the families for which they work.
“These are people that travel without luggage, but expect to find everything in place once they arrive at their destination. We are the people who take care of those things and ensure that everything is as it should be”, explains Carbó.
“They manage time, emotions and information, but never specific tasks”
Alberta La Grup
Throughout its 15 years of existence, Alberta La Grup has had around 300 clients from 28 different nationalities. Around 5% come from Spain, including some Catalans. Many of these clients still rely on Alberta La Grup’s services, including elite sports personalities – mainly footballers and tennis players – investors, wealthy families… Any profile that forms part of the richest 1% of the world population.
“The ‘Personal Angel’ takes care of any tasks that are legal and ethical”
CEO of Alberta La Grup
“It’s a lifestyle. Money is not an object when you need to take care of their needs. For them, time is of the essence rather than money. Therefore, we try to stay one step ahead of their needs, taking care of time, information and emotion from behind the scenes. We never simply take care of tasks”, Carbó elaborates.
The founder of Alberta La Grup worked for over ten years as the secretary to the president of a Catalan family company. One day, her boss informed her that he was going to sell the company and move the United States, leaving her without work. “That’s when I decided to take the next step. I had discovered Personal Angels existed as a profession in London and it sounded quite similar to what I had already been doing for a decade. So I decided to capitalize on this and together with my husband, Juan Antonio, we created the company and started working with our first three clients, amongst them my ex-boss.” This was in 2007. Nowadays, Alberta La Grup has a dozen employees and more than thirty freelance collaborators that they work with on a regular basis.
After facing difficulties in finding employees that had experience as a Personal Angel, Carbó decided to create the institute to train them. They offer two programs, each lasting for five months: the PA Postgraduate Diploma, for those getting started in the profession, including over 22 subject matters which cover more than 137 skills, and the Pro Program, aimed at those wanting to update, improve or expand their skills and knowledge. The third edition of the programs will begin in October of this year and the admissions committee will select from all the applications those who are successful in occupying one of the twelve unique places that are available on the course.
“We have infinite resources to find what the clients are wanting”
Arantza Fabregat, a 32 year-old originally from Venezuela is currently doing the Postgraduate Diploma at The Lifestyle Institute. She was already working as a Personal Angel but wanted to build on her skill set and “extend her list of contacts”. She tells us that “solving infinite problems and situations” is what her profession is about. She mentions that the clients are “very demanding” but that they have “infinite resources to get what they want”. Therefore, she tells us: “Having someone like us by their side opens up a world of possibilities because we manage their expectations. We know the sky is the limit, but have our feet firmly on the ground.” And that’s what makes them special. Of course, always with respect, honesty and discretion.
Translation: Emily Benton