If you're looking for a professional position in the hotel and restaurant management business one of the first things you should mention in your cover letter that goes along with your application is any experience you'd had in the industry, no matter how trivial. Most people when they were young worked in the fast food industry and it is a prime learning ground for dealing with co-workers and customers, and talent in dealing with people internal and external to an organization is something that is required at every level of management.
There are several universities throughout the world that offer bachelors and masters degrees in hotel and restaurant management. People who earn this degree will have the background in accounting, finance, logistics, and many other disciplines needed to successfully run a hotel and restaurant in these tough economic times. If you have such a degree, it should be prominent on your application and on your cover letter.
Most people in this business today took the old fashioned route and worked their way up over the years through the ranks to a management position. If you can demonstrate in your application letter that you have moved up to higher roles and accepted more responsibility in your job history, chances are good that you'll get a shot somewhere to manage. But there's nothing like a combination of education and experience to get your foot in the door quickly at almost any establishment.