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HEADS above the Rest
by Benoit Gateau-Cumin

The Newsletter of The Boutique Search Firm, a worldwide retained recruiting firm specializing in hospitality management.

For any information, please contact us at 1-310-552-2221 or visit our website at
http://www.boutiquesearchfirm.com

Global Update: Who's where and doing what:
NOVEMBER 2007

 

THE AMERICAS

 

Hilton Hotels Corporation has appointed Christopher Nassetta President and Chief Executive Officer. Known for his charisma and energetic management style, he joins Hilton from Host Hotels & Resorts, where he had been the President and Chief Executive Officer since 2000. Host is a major owner of hotels operated by Marriott, Ritz-Carlton, Westin, Sheraton, W, St. Regis, Luxury Collection, Hyatt, Four Seasons, Hilton, Fairmont and Swissôtel. The company currently owns 130 properties worldwide. At Hilton, it can be said that Nassetta replaces both Stephen Bollenbach, who was due to retire January 1, 2008 and Matthew Hart, who was due to succeed him on the same date.

 

Replacing Christopher Nassetta as President and Chief Executive Officer for Host Hotels & Resorts is W. Edward Walter. He moves up from his post as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, a position he has held since 2003 after joining the company in 1996.

 

InterContinental Hotels Group has appointed Tom Seddon Chief Marketing Officer, replacing Peter Gowers who was recently appointed Chief Executive of IHG's Asia Pacific region. Seddon joins from SUBWAY where he was the Chief Executive of the company's franchisee advertising fund trust, heading up worldwide sales and marketing activity. Coincidentally, he had joined Subway from… InterContinental Hotels Group in 2005.

 

John Berndt joins Cipriani Hotel Resort and Residences in Las Vegas as President. He was most recently the General Manager and Area Director for Marco Polo Hotels of Hong Kong. A Cornell graduate, Berndt is also a former Vice President of Operations for Harrah’s Entertainment in Chicago and spent nine years with the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company as General Manager at the Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay and the Ritz-Carlton Seoul.

 

Bill McBeath has been named President and Chief Operating Officer of  MGM Mirage’s CityCenter, scheduled to open in Las Vegas in November 2009. McBeath had served as President of Bellagio since February 2005 and joined MGM in 1987. He also previously served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Treasure Island and President and Chief Operating Officer of the Mirage.

Randy Morton
has been named President and Chief Operating Officer of Bellagio. A former Four Seasons man, he joined MGM MIRAGE in 2000 as Vice President of Hotel Operations for Bellagio and most recently served as President of the Monte Carlo.

Second-generation hotelman Anton Nikodemus has been promoted to President and Chief Operating Officer of the Monte Carlo taking over from Randy Morton. He most recently served as Senior Vice President of Hotel Operations for Bellagio. He joined MGM MIRAGE in 2005 as Senior Vice President of Hotel Operations at the MGM Grand.

Jon Corchis has been named Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of the resort and casino at CityCenter. Corchis most recently served in the same position at Bellagio. He has been with MGM since 1993, holding positions at the Mirage, Beau Rivage and Bellagio.

Mike Longi has been named Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Bellagio. He began his MGM MIRAGE career in 1989 and has worked in positions at the Golden Nugget, Treasure Island and the Mirage, where he served most recently as Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.

Bill Boasberg has been named Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at the Mirage. He joined MGM MIRAGE in 2005 and was most recently the Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of New York-New York.

Courtney Wenlender has been promoted to Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at New York-New York. Wenlender joined the company in 2002 and has previously served as Financial Controller at Bellagio and, most recently, as Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Beau Rivage.

Jorge Perez has been promoted to Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at MGM Mirage’s Beau Rivage in Biloxi. Perez joined the company in 1995 and has served in several financial positions, including Hotel Controller at Bellagio and, most recently, Executive Director of Financial Projects for Mirage Resorts.
 

Shawn Hauver has been promoted to Managing Director at the Loews Miami Beach. He had joined the property in 1999 as Director of Food and Beverage. He was most recently serving as Resident Manager for the hotel. Hauver played food and management roles previously at the Hyatt Regency St. Louis, the Hyatt Regency Greenville, the Hyatt Regency Hilton Head and the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress.

 
Michael Tompkins joins Miraval Resort as General Manager. For the past two years, he had been the Director of Hotel and Spa for the Oneida Indian Nation’s Turning Stone Resort and Casino in New York. He was formerly the Associate Managing Director and Director of Health and Healing at Canyon Ranch in the Berkshires.
 

Fairmont has appointed Heather McCrory Regional Vice President for Central Canada and General Manager of the Fairmont Royal York in Toronto. She returns to hotel operations from her most recent position with the company as Vice President, Sales and Distribution. McCrory replaces Ian Wilson as General Manager at the hotel. Wilson has been promoted to a Regional Vice President position with Fairmont.

 

The MGM Grand at Foxwoods has appointed Gillian Murphy to the position of Senior Vice President and General Manager. She was most recently the Vice President and Assistant General Manager of the Ameristar property Black Hawk in Colorado. Previously, she held executive roles for Harrah’s Entertainment and Harvey’s Casino Hotels. In addition, Murphy served as General Manager of the Williamsburg Inn, Director of Hotel Operations at Mohonk Mountain House and Director of Property Services at the Annapolis Hotel.

 

Seamus McManus has rejoined Rosewood to take over for Marco Perry as General Manager of San Ysidro Ranch. He was most recently overseeing the Mayacama Country Club in Santa Rosa. McManus also served as General Manager for Calistoga Ranch, the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort and Meadowood.

 

Carl Emberson returns to the Grand Hyatt Sao Paulo as General Manager. He previously served as Resident Manager at the hotel before moving to Argentina to be the General Manager of the Park Hyatt Mendoza. His replacement in Mendoza is Antonio Alvarez, who moves up from his position of Director of Operations at the Park Hyatt Buenos Aires.


Tim Miller
has been named Chief Executive Officer of Crunch Fitness. Miller spent most of his career with Ian Schrager’s Morgan’s Hotel Group, where he was most recently the Executive Vice President and Chief Branding Officer. Prior to rejoining Morgan, he had a hiatus as President of Alden Hotels, whose flagship is located in Houston.
  

Hervé Blondel has moved within Joie de Vivre to take over the position of General Manager for four small properties located in the Soma area of San Francisco. Two of them, the Flamingo and the Britton, will be combined and renamed the GOOD HOTEL. Blondel has been with Joie de Vivre since 2003, most recently as General Manager for the Carlton San Francisco.

 

Giuseppe Lama has joined the Irvine Company’s future Resort at Pelican Hill as Managing Director. He was most recently the General Manager of Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa. He has previously held various positions at hotels worldwide including the Villa d'Este, the Dorchester and the Hotel del Coronado. Lama also logged five years with Ritz-Carlton in Boston, Cleveland, Dearborn and Marina Del Rey.

 

In addition, Thierry Grandsire has been appointed General Manager for the Resort at Pelican Hill in Newport Beach. He is an eighteen-year Ritz-Carlton veteran who most recently managed the Ritz-Carlton Doha. Prior to Doha, Grandsire served in senior executive roles at Ritz-Carlton properties in Pasadena, Marina del Rey and Laguna Niguel. At Pelican Hill, he will be one more former Ritz-Carlton key employee, under Ralph Grippo, President of the Irvine Companies Resort Properties, and Lama, Managing Director of Pelican Hill.

 

Blackstone’s LXR Resorts transferred Armel Santens from his position of General Manager at Bel-Age in West Hollywood (soon to relaunch as the London West Hollywood) to that of General Manager at the Miami Beach Resort & Spa. Santens previously served as Managing Director at the Brown Palace in Denver and spent four years as General Manager and Regional Director of Operations at the Millennium Biltmore. In West Hollywood, Santens’ successor is Vincent Mercurio.

 

James Gross is the new General Manager of the Sheraton Austin. He joins the hotel from the Hilton San Diego Gaslamp Quarter where he had served as General Manager since 2004.


Acqualina will no longer be operated by Rosewood and will establish its own brand, Acqualina Management. Deborah Yager-Fleming, the Director of Sales and Marketing, will remain with the new title of Vice President - Sales and Marketing. In addition, Florent Gateau will continue in his role as Vice President - Managing Director.

 

Dominique Marty is the new General Manager of the Millennium Bostonian. He was most recently the General Manager of the DoubleTree Hotel Boston/Westborough.

Robert LaCasse is the new General Manager of Le Méridien San Francisco (the former Park Hyatt). He was most recently at the Sheraton Austin as General Manager. He has previously served as General Manager at the Marriott Delray Beach and the Sheraton Newton.

 

Deepak Mehra is the new General Manager of the Serrano in San Francisco. He has previously held various executive positions with Raffles L'Ermitage, InterContinental Hotels in New York and Hyatt.

 

Craig Waterman has been appointed General Manager at the Setai San Diego scheduled to open in early 2008. His most recent position was as General Manager at the Watercolor Inn & Resort in Florida. He previously served as Resort Manager at the Wyndham Buttes Resort and the Boulders. In addition, he has served as Wyndham's West Coast Area Director of Food and Beverage and held various positions at the Phoenician and the Shore Club in Miami.

Gina LaBarre has been appointed Vice President, Brand Management, for Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts based in Atlanta. LaBarre most recently served as Vice President, Brand Management, for Candlewood Suites.

 

Robert Radomski has been appointed Vice President, Brand Management for Extended-Stay Brands based in Atlanta. Radomski most recently served as Vice President, Brand Management, for Staybridge Suites and has been with the InterContinental Group for eighteen years.


Shan Kanagasingham has been named General Manager of the Tides South Beach, operated by the Kor Group. She was most recently the Director of Rooms for the re-opening of the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong. She was previously the Director of Rooms at Raffles L'Ermitage and also spent ten years with Ritz-Carlton.

 

Richard McLennan has been named General Manager of the Resort at Squaw Creek. A Lausanne graduate, McLennan was most recently the Hotel Manager of the Island Hotel in Newport Beach. He has previously served as General Manager of the St. Regis Aspen and in management roles with Daufuskie Island, Quail Hollow, the Homestead, and Pinehurst.

 

At Squaw Creek, McLennan replaces Stan Kantowski who has been named General Manager of sister property Miramonte in Indian Wells. Before joining Squaw Creek, Kantowski was the General Manager at the Magnolia in Houston and Director of Operations at Sunriver Resort in Oregon.

 

Henri Birmele has joined Magna Hospitality as Vice President Hospitality, based in Los Angeles. For the past four years, he had been with Shutters on the Beach, most recently as General Manager, after joining as Hotel Manager. Birmele was previously the Hotel Manager at the Viceroy Santa Monica, the Hotel Manager at the St. Regis Los Angeles and the St. Regis Washington D.C.

 

Lausanne graduate Luigi di Ciaccio has been appointed General Manager of the Casa Colonial Beach & Spa in the Dominican Republic. For the past eight years, di Ciaccio held General Manager positions at two Italian resort properties, Hotel Serapo and La Réserve.

 

Kevin Rupp has been named General Manager for the Council House, a conference center for SC Johnson, and Wingspread, a private conference center for the Johnson Foundation, both located in Racine, Wisconsin. He was previously the Director of Conference Services for Benchmark's Eaglewood Resort and Spa, near Chicago.  
  

Jörg Heyer has joined the Sheraton Vistana Resort in Orlando as Hotel Manager. He was most recently with Executive Search International. He had previously served as General Manager at the Sheraton Jumeirah Beach Resort & Towers in Dubai and the Sheraton Miramar Resort in Egypt.

 

Stuart Fearnley has joined MGM Grand Hotels and Resorts in Las Vegas as Vice President Design and Construction. He was most recently the Senior Vice President Design and Construction with Four Seasons.

 

Andrew Best has joined Starwood as Vice President Project Management. He was most recently with Four Seasons in Toronto as Director of Design and Construction.

 

Francois Luiggi joins the Carlyle in Manhattan as Executive Assistant Manager. For the past nine years, he had been with Four Seasons, most recently based out of Toronto Headquarters as Corporate Director of Food and Beverage Training and Standards. Before moving to Toronto, he served in various food and beverage positions at the Four Seasons New York.

 

SBE Entertainment Group has appointed Afshin Kateb Chief Financial Officer, taking over for Randy Winograd, who was promoted to SBE President and General Counsel. Kateb joins SBE from Lowe Enterprises, where he was the Senior Vice President of Lowe Enterprises Investors. He was previously with the KOR Group, where he served as Chief Financial Officer and founding member.

 

Marvin Wong has been promoted to Director of Finance from his previous role as Assistant Director of Finance at the Four Seasons Westlake Village. He has held previous finance roles at the Four Seasons San Francisco.

 

The Hyatt Regency Woodfield has appointed Iraj Jali Director of Finance. Jali was most recently the Area Controller for Kokua Hospitality in Chicago. Prior to that, he was the Financial Controller of the James Hotel in Chicago and of the Sofitel Chicago O’Hare.

Stephen Miano has returned to Rosewood as Regional Controller for the Mansion on Peachtree in Atlanta. He spent the summer with Sea Island as Resorts Controller, after serving seven years with Rosewood at the Mansion on Turtle Creek. In addition, he spent ten years with Four Seasons in various positions.

 

The Hyatt Regency Woodfield has promoted Thomas Volpe to Director of Facilities Management. He has been with the hotel as Director of Engineering since 1996. Previously, he was the Director of Engineering for the Hyatt Lodge in Oak Brook.

 

Quentin Incao has joined MTM Luxury Lodging in Kirkland, Washington, as Director of Operations. He was most recently the Operations Manager for the Willows Lodge in Woodinville, Washington, an MTM property.

 

Christoph Zbinden is the new Vice President of Food and Beverage for the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Fort Lauderdale. He was most recently with the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group in Hong Kong as Group Director of Food and Beverage. Previously, he served as Corporate Director of Food and Beverage for Ritz-Carlton and as Executive Assistant Manager-Food and Beverage at the Ritz-Carlton Philadelphia.

 

Brian Sommer transfers to the Four Seasons Nevis as Director of Food and Beverage. Since 2003, he had been at the Four Seasons Dallas, most recently as Assistant Director of Food and Beverage. He also spent two years at the Four Seasons New York.

 

The Eden Roc Renaissance has appointed Scott Siebert Director of Food and Beverage. Siebert most recently served as Director of Food and Beverage at the JW Marriott Starr Pass in Tucson. 


Hakan Kocak has joined the Loews Santa Monica as Director of Food and Beverage. He was most recently in a similar position at the Huntley Santa Monica. Previously, he had held various food and beverage positions at the Quail Lodge, the Peninsula Beverly Hills and the Ritz-Carlton Huntington.

 

The Hyatt Regency Woodfield has promoted Gary Irps to Director of Food and Beverage. He was previously the Director of Catering and Convention Services at the hotel and prior to that was the Senior Catering Manager of Marriott’s Lincolnshire Resort.


Rémy Cadière has been appointed Director of Food and Beverage at the InterContinental Cozumel. He had joined the Hotel Kura Hulanda Spa & Casino in 2005 as Director of Food and Beverage. Prior to that, he held various food and beverage posts at the InterContinental San Juan and the InterContinental Princesa Sofia.

 

Wiley Bates III has been named Food and Beverage Director for the NYLO Plano at Legacy, debuting this December in North Dallas. He was most recently the Director of Food and Beverage at the Westin Stonebriar Resort. Previously, he has overseen the kitchen for the Landmark Restaurant & Library Bar in the Warwick Melrose Hotel and the Westin Great Southern Columbus.

 

Gary Obligacion is joining Coastal Luxury Management as Vice President of Operations. He comes from Bernardus Lodge where he was the Director of Restaurants. He started his career at Chez Panisse in 1984 and has held various positions with the Ritz-Carlton San Francisco, the Mandarin Oriental San Francisco and the Lodge at Pebble Beach

 

Elizabeth Carrier has moved to the Ritz-Carlton Chicago as Assistant Director of Food and Beverage. She previously served as Assistant Director of Food and Beverage at the Beverly Hilton and spent two years at Wynn Las Vegas as General Manager of Daniel Boulud Brasserie and Tableau.

 

Kevin O’Sullivan has been appointed Senior Vice President of Gaming for Foxwoods Resort Casino and the MGM Grand at Foxwoods, scheduled to open in May 2008. He was most recently the Senior Vice President of Operations for the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Biloxi.

 

At the Michael Dell-owned Fairmont Miramar in Santa Monica Hiromi Oki has been appointed Director of Human Resources. She transfers from the Fairmont Chicago, and takes over from Stephanie Johnson, who has relocated to Northern California.

 

Jonathan Salt joins Kerzner International as Vice President Organizational Development and Human Resources, based in Fort Lauderdale. For the past fourteen years, he had been with InterContinental, most recently as Director of Human Resources, InterContinental Hotels and Resorts, North America, based in Atlanta. Previously, he had served in various human resources positions for Sheraton in Doha and London.

 

InterContinental Hotels of San Francisco have promoted David Schweitzer to Area Regional Director of Human Resources. He had previously held front office management positions at the Crowne Plaza San Francisco Airport before joining the InterContinental Mark Hopkins in 1990 as Front Office Manager. He was appointed Human Resources Manager four years later.

 

The Hyatt Regency Woodfield in Schaumburg has named Tracy Daly Director of Human Resources. She was previously the Director of Human Resources at the Sofitel Chicago O’Hare.

 

Fairmont has promoted Mark Sergot Vice President, Global Sales. He most recently served as the company's Regional Director, Sales and Marketing, U.S. Central Region, after joining the company as Director of Group Sales at the Fairmont Chicago in 2002. He previously held various positions with Starwood and Hilton.

 

Benchmark Hospitality has appointed Albert Lacle Regional Vice President Sales and Marketing. He previously served as Founder/Chief Executive Officer of Key Management Group. In addition, he has held various sales and marketing positions at the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, the Sands in San Juan and Tropworld in Atlantic City.

 

Dave Duncan has transferred as Director of Sales and Marketing to the St. Louis Airport Marriott. He comes from the same position in Orlando for the Renaissance Resort at SeaWorld. He has been with the company for 22 years, serving in various sales and marketing roles for Marriott's Tan-Tar-A Resort Golf Club and Spa and Ritz-Carlton properties around the country.

Aspen-based Rob Henderson
has launched Mariner Consulting. He was most recently the Director of Sales and Marketing for the St. Regis Aspen. He had previously overseen sales and marketing at Destination Hotels & Resorts properties in Colorado in addition to properties for Marriott, Hilton, Kempinski, and L’Ermitage in California, Colorado and Canada.

 

Martin Joyce has been named Director of Sales and Marketing for the Regent Boston at Battery Wharf, due for completion in early 2008. Most recently, he was the Director of Sales and Marketing for Cape Cod’s Ocean Edge Resort and Club. He previously served as Director of Sales and Marketing at the Hartford Marriott Hotels in Connecticut, the Boston Marriott Quincy and the Boston Marriott Cambridge.

 

The Hyatt Regency Woodfield has named Jeanne Hahn Director of Sales and Marketing. She comes from the Sofitel Chicago O’Hare where she most recently held the position of Director of Sales and Marketing.

 

Mike Islava has been appointed Director of Sales and Marketing at the Renaissance Esmeralda Resort and Spa in Indian Wells. For the past five years, he held the post of Director of Sales and Marketing for La Quinta in Palm Springs. Previously, he was with the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company in various sales and marketing roles for their properties in Rancho Mirage, Marina del Rey, Pasadena and Laguna Niguel.

 

Nance Trevithick has been named Director of Group and Incentive Sales at the Resort at Pelican Hill. Trevithick has spent the past twelve years with Four Seasons, most recently as Director of Sales at the Four Seasons Aviara. Previously, she was in operations at the Four Seasons Boston, Four Seasons Santa Barbara and was the Director of Sales at the Loews Coronado Bay Resort.  

 

Sandra Cook has joined the Sorrento Hotel as Director of Sales and Marketing. She was most recently a Sales Manager at the Heathman Hotel Kirkland.

 

Lisa Bertomeu has been appointed Area Director of Sales and Marketing for the Chicagoland Hilton Hotels that includes the Palmer House Hilton, Hilton Chicago, Hilton Chicago O’Hare Airport, the Drake and Conrad Hotels. Bertomeu, a Cornell graduate, was most recently Hilton's Regional Director of Sales and Marketing, Southeast Region. Prior to that, Bertomeu functioned as the Director of Sales, Hiltons of Washington Sales Complex in Washington, D.C.


George Chumbley has been named Director of Sales and Marketing at the Vail Plaza Hotel and Club, a $110 million property slated to open in mid-December in Vail Village. He was most recently the Director of Sales and Marketing for Destination Hotels and Resorts. He previously served as Director of Sales for Resortquest International and the Evergreen Lodge, both in Colorado.


Chateau on the Lake Resort has named Renee Wilhite Director of Sales and Marketing. She previously served as Director of Sales for the Crowne Plaza Branson and corporate Director of Sales and Marketing for American Property Management.

 

Joe di Girolamo is the new Director of Sales and Marketing at the Heldrich in New Brunswick. He was most recently the Executive Director of Retail Sales and Group Marketing for the Sands Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City.

 

The Ocean Edge Resort & Club on Cape Cod has named Bryan Webb Director of Sales and Marketing. He was most recently the Director of Sales at the Boston Harbor Hotel and previously oversaw sales at the Hotel@MIT and the Charles Hotel in Harvard Square.


Paul Holden has been named Director of Sales and Marketing at the Hilton Short Hills. He previously served in the same capacity at the Hilton Newark Airport.

 

Magnolia Lodging has promoted Linda Little to the newly created role of Director of Marketing. She joined the company in 2006 and was most recently a Project Coordinator.

 

The Landings St. Lucia, scheduled for a December opening, has appointed John MacMullen Director of Sales and Marketing. He was most recently the Director of Sales for the Ocean Reef Club. He has previously held various sales positions with the Cheeca Lodge, the Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island and Amelia Island Plantation.

Roland Biron
has been appointed Director of Sales and Marketing at Rosewood’s Mansion on Peachtree, slated to open in 2008 in Atlanta. He joins from his most recent position as Director of Sales at the InterContinental Buckhead. He has previously served in various sales roles with Ritz-Carlton at the Ritz-Carlton Buckhead, the Ritz-Carlton Atlanta and the Ritz-Carlton St. Louis.

 

Tim Burke has joined Rocco Forte Hotels in Los Angeles as Regional Sales Manager. He was most recently with Classic Vacations as Business Development Manager. Burke previously held various sales positions with the Parker Palm Springs and San Ysidro Ranch.

 

The Ritz-Carlton Westchester has appointed Barbara Thibault Director of Catering Sales. For the past two years, she has served as Director of Catering for the Roosevelt in New York. Previously, she spent six years as Assistant Director of Catering at the New York Palace and has held various catering posts at the Waldorf=Astoria and Le Parker Méridien.

 

The Harbor Beach Marriott in Fort Lauderdale has named Michael Cook Director of Sales. He most recently served as Senior Sales Manager for the Ritz-Carlton South Beach and was previously the Director of National Accounts for both the JW Marriott Orlando and the Ritz-Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes.

 

The Fairmont Washington D.C. has appointed Lauren Carr Director of Group Sales. Carr was most recently a Senior Account Executive at the Renaissance Mayflower. Previously, she was a Sales Manager at the New York Marriott Financial Center.

 

Laura Hauser has joined the soon-to-open Koa Kea on Kauai as Director of Leisure Sales. She joins from Club Med where she has served as District Sales Manager for the past year. Previously, she represented Kona Village as Regional Sales Manager, US Western Region, for six years.

 

The Loews Coronado Bay has appointed Brigette Folse Associate Director of Sales. She was previously the National Sales Manager at the Loews New Orleans Hotel.


Fredrik Nyborg
has joined Executive Search International in Orlando as Vice President of Talent Acquisition. He was most recently the Director of Food and Beverage at the Boca Raton Resort and Club. He previously served as Director of Operations at the Sol Melia Paradisus in Puerto Rico and Food and Beverage Director at the Sofitel Chicago Water Tower.

 

Stacey Hickman has been promoted to Director of Revenue Management at the Hyatt Regency Woodfield. She joined the property seven years ago and has held various posts including Convention Services Manager, Associate Director of Catering and Convention Services and Corporate Sales Manager.

 

Michael Ditterline has been named Director of Rooms at the Four Seasons Palm Beach. He was most recently at the Westin Hilton Head Island where he had been the Director of Rooms since June 2006. He has held previous rooms positions at the Sheraton New York and the Westin Princeton.

 

The Four Seasons Santa Barbara has promoted Alice Bouman to Director of Rooms. She joined the property in 2003 as Director of Housekeeping then was promoted to Assistant Director of Rooms soon after. She has been with the company since 1996 in London and Houston.


Damien O'Connor joins the Four Seasons Boston as Director of Rooms. He had been with Starwood for the past twelve years, most recently as Rooms Manager at the Westin Diplomat in Florida.

 

Oliver Bruns transfers to the Four Seasons Great Exuma as Director of Rooms. Since 2005, he was the Director of Rooms at the Four Seasons Amman and also has previous rooms experience gathered at the Four Seasons London.

 

David Daguise has joined Discovery at Marigot Bay in St. Lucia as Rooms Director. He was most recently the Resident Manager at Jalousie Plantation also in the British West Indies. He previously served as Front Office Manager at Le Méridien Paris Etoile and the Hilton Paris.

 

Martin Burkhour has become the Director of Rooms at Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica, taking over for Brian Butterworth who has returned to Hawaii’s Mauna Lani. Burkhour previously served as Front Office Manager at the Beverly Hills Hotel and Director of Guest Services at the former Four Seasons Newport Beach.

 

Victor Rodriguez is the new Director of Rooms at the Heldrich in New Brunswick. He was most recently the Director of Rooms at the former North Maple Inn in Basking Ridge.

 

The Hyatt Regency Woodfield has promoted Nicholas Katinos to Director of Rooms. With the property since 2005, Katinos previously held various posts at the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe Resort, Spa and Casino, the Hyatt Regency Bethesda, the Hyatt Regency Grand Cayman and the Grand Hyatt New York.

 

Franck Steigerwald has been named Executive Chef for the Taj Boston, taking the spot left vacant when Katsuo Sugiora returned to the Beverly Hilton. He comes from Naples where he was most recently the Chef de Cuisine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort after serving in the same position for the Ritz-Carlton Naples.

 

Adam Votaw has been appointed Executive Chef for LaPlaya Beach & Golf Resort. He previously served as Executive Chef at Little Palm Island and as Executive Pastry Chef at the Four Seasons Palm Beach.

 

Gavin Kaysen, the 28-year-old Chef de Cuisine at El Bizcocho at the Rancho Bernardo Inn in San Diego, moves to New York to head the kitchen at Café Boulud, replacing Bertrand Chemel.

 

The Sedona Rouge Hotel & Spa has named Ron Moler Executive Chef. Recruited from the Westward Look Resort , he joins the newly promoted Chef de Cuisine Christopher Smith, formerly Reds’ Sous Chef.

 

Ivy Stark returns to Dos Caminos in New York as Executive Chef. She previously held the same position at Dos Caminos before serving as the Corporate Chef for Rosa Mexicano and, most recently, as Executive Chef at Amalia, all in Manhattan. In addition, she has overseen the kitchens at Zocalo and Match Uptown, also in Manhattan, and helped open Ciudad in Los Angeles.

Bertrand Chemel rejoins Rick Adams, the owner of the former Cello, as Executive Chef of 2941 Restaurant in Falls Church, Virginia, replacing Scott Bryan. Chemel served as Sous Chef and Chef de Cuisine for Adams before moving to Café Boulud as the Sous Chef and, most recently, the Executive Chef.

 

Christophe Depuischaffray transfers as Executive Chef to the InterContinental Mark Hopkins San Francisco. For the past three years, he had served as Executive Chef at the InterContinental Madrid.

 

Gary Roth rejoins the Los Altos Country Club as Executive Chef. He takes over for Bruno Chemel who had been his successor when he went to La Riconada Country Club, where he has been the Executive Chef for the past two years. Roth previously served in the kitchens of Campton Place and the Ritz-Carlton San Francisco.

 

Dominique Crenn moves up to San Francisco to serve as Chef de Cuisine for the restaurant Luce at the InterContinental, slated to open in December. She was most recently in Santa Monica at Abode Restaurant & Lounge as Executive Chef/Partner. This is a return to San Francisco for Crenn who previously served in the kitchen at Campton Place before overseeing the kitchen at La Bruschetta at the InterContinental Jakarta and the Manhattan Beach Country Club.

 

La Costa Resort and Spa has named Sean Firtel Chef de Cuisine of Legends Bistro. He most recently owned and operated Carlsbad’s Red Dahlia. Firtel previously worked at San Francisco’s Flying Saucer restaurant and Mille Fleurs in San Diego.

 

Jesse Davis has been appointed Chef de Cuisine at BLT Steak Restaurant at the Ritz-Carlton Westchester. Davis was most recently the Sous Chef at Porterhouse Restaurant in the Time Warner building in Manhattan. He has previously served in various culinary positions at 21 and Windows on the World.

 

Isaac Walker returns to the Driskill in Austin as Event and Banquet Chef. He started at the Driskill seventeen years ago washing dishes and has since overseen the kitchens for the Westin Dallas, the Westin Beachwood in Fort Worth and the Fairmont Dallas.

 

Julliet Marshall has joined the Hyatt Regency Monterey as Pastry Chef. She transfers from the Hyatt Regency Grand Cayman where she had been serving as Executive Sous Chef after initially toiling as Pastry Chef. In addition, she has held various pastry positions for the Leela Kempinski Mumbai and for P&O Cruises.

 

Christian Passath has been promoted at the Renaissance Tampa Hotel International Plaza to Director of Restaurants. For the past three years, he had held the position of Director of Catering at the hotel. He previously served as Catering Sales Manager at the Ritz-Carlton Sarasota and the former Wyndham Westshore.

 

La Casa de Sierra Nevada in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico has appointed Narciso Betanzos Restaurants Manager. He was most recently the Captain of the fine dining room at sister Orient-Express property, Maroma Resort and Spa.

 

Mickael Mirica has joined the Four Winds Casino in New Buffalo, Michigan, as Restaurant Manager for their Copper Rock restaurant. He previously served as Restaurant Manager for Harrah’s Casino in Joliet, the Hotel Avalon in Beverly Hills and the Hotel Bel-Air.

 

Keith Fergel moves to Scottsdale to oversee Michael Mina’s Bourbon Steak Restaurant at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess as opening General Manager. He joins from his most recent post as General Manager of C by Charlie Trotter at the One&Only Palmilla. He previously served as Service Director at the Fifth Floor in San Francisco and Sommelier at Thomas Keller’s French Laundry.

 

Ron Garcia returns to the Venetian Las Vegas as opening General Manager for Sushi Samba. He previously served as Director of Operations for Delacosta Restaurant and Lounge in Chicago, Director of Food and Beverage for Barrick Gaming Corporation in Las Vegas and Managing Partner for Aquaknox at the Venetian.

 

Claire Vogt-Moykopf transfers to the Mandarin Oriental San Francisco as Front Office Manager. She was most recently with the Mandarin Oriental New York as Assistant Front Office Manager.

 

The new Spa Director at Little Dix Bay is Glen Ross. He comes from the same position at Sandy Lane in Barbados.

 

EUROPE

 

Christopher Cowdray has been promoted within the Dorchester Hotel Group to Chief Executive Officer of the Dorchester Collection. Cowdray is currently the General Manager of the Dorchester London. He had served as Managing Director of Claridge's for six years, prior to joining the Dorchester in 2004.

 

Niels Sherry returns to London as Chief Operating Officer for Devere Deluxe Hotels. Until one year ago, he had been with Morgans Hotel Group most recently as Executive Vice President - Operations in New York. Previously in London he was overseeing the Sanderson and St. Martin’s Lane.

 

KSL Capital Partners is creating a European investment platform based in London to be known as KSL Capital Partners International and has hired Adrian Constant to lead. He was formerly the Vice President for Orient Express Hotels—Europe. Constant was previously the Regional Manager for Le Méridien Brazil and the General Manager of Le Méridien Copacabana.

 

Fairmont Raffles has named James Kaplan Senior Vice President, Development, for Europe, Africa and the Middle East, to be based in London. Prior to joining Fairmont, he was Vice President, Business Development & Planning - EAME, for InterContinental Hotels & Resorts. He has previously held various posts with Kerzner International and Marriott International.

Reinhard Heermann is the new General Manager for the Steigenberger Frankfurter Hof. Heermann’s most recent position was as the General Manager of the Dusit Thani in Bangkok.

 

Abel Damergi has moved to Rome to oversee the Marriott Rome Park as General Manager. For the past year he served as General Manager of the Shangri-La Maldives Resort and Spa. Previously, he has held the post of General Manager for the Luna Hotel Baglioni in Venice.

 

The InterContinental Paris Le Grand has appointed Julien Debarle General Manager, taking over for Lars Wagner. Debarle has been with the company for eleven years and most recently served as General Manager of the InterContinental Miami for two years. He was previously the General Manager of the InterContinental Hotel & Conference Center Cleveland, Regional Director of Food and Beverage of InterContinental for the entire eastern region of the United States and Executive Assistant Manager of the InterContinental Mexico Presidente.

 

Jacques Vitu joins the Hotel Amigo in Brussels as General Manager. He was most recently the City General Manager for Hotel Le Palace & Hotel Balmoral in Spa, Belgium. He previously served as General Manager of the Hotel Andrassy – Budapest and Resident Manager for Le Plaza Brussels.

 

The Hotel Metropole Brussels has promoted Rodolphe Van Weyenbergh to General Manager. A Lausanne graduate, he joined the hotel in 2004 as Food and Beverage Manager and was subsequently promoted to Director of Operations after two years. He previously held various positions at the Radisson SAS Montfleury Hotel in Cannes and at the Radisson SAS in Nice.

 

Cristiano Morelli has been appointed Director of Business Development for HotelREZ based in Paris. He was previously the Sales and Marketing Director at the Hotel Lotti. His career also includes posts with Rocco Forte Hotels at the Hotel Amigo in Brussels, Paris’ Hotel Napoleon and Il Palazzo at the Bauer in Venice.

 

Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts has named Philip Mertens Senior Vice President Development & Facility Management. Most recently, he was Development Director for the Sorouh Real Estate Company in Abu Dhabi. He has previously held various executive roles for Holiday Inn and Qatar National Hotels.

 

The new Hotel Manager at the Four Seasons Prague is Sonja Vodusek. She was promoted from her previous position of Director of Rooms at the Four Seasons Washington D.C. She has been with the company since 1997, holding posts in Tokyo, Houston, Dublin and Sydney.

 

Sonia Ribas has been named Hotel Manager for the 987 Prague Soho Hotel due to open Summer 2008. She was previously the Executive Assistant Manager and Rooms Division Manager for La Veranda Grand Mercure Resort & Spa in Phu Quoc, Vietnam.

 

Gerardo Kalaw has been appointed Director of Finance for the Four Seasons Gresham Palace Budapest. Kalaw, a Cornell graduate, joined the company in 1998 at the Four Seasons Philadelphia before transferring to the Four Seasons Prague as Director of Finance.

 

The Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has appointed David Nicholls Group Director of Food and Beverage based in London. He was most recently the Director of Food and Beverage and Executive Chef at the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park. Prior to joining Mandarin Oriental, Nicholls worked as a Chef at Buckingham Palace, and was the youngest chef in the United Kingdom to be awarded a Michelin star.

 

Sarah Coy replaces David Nicholls as Director of Food and Beverage at the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park London. She was promoted from her most recent position with the hotel as the Director of Events. 

 

Sandeep Bhalla has moved to the Berkeley in London as Food and Beverage Director. He was most recently a part of the opening team for the Burj Al Arab and was most recently the Food and Beverage Manager for the resort.

 

Valery Rives is now the Director of Food and Beverage at the Hotel Balzac in Paris. He has previously held various food and beverage positions at the Novotel Porte de Bagnolet, the Chateau de Mont Villargenne and the Hotel InterContinental Paris.

 

Tony Coveney has been promoted to Front Desk House Manager for the Four Seasons Dublin taking over many of the responsibilities of the now departed John Fleming. Coveney moves up from his most recent position as Front Office Manager and previously served as a Sales Manager for the hotel.

 

Eric Falcucci has moved to Geneva as Director of Rooms at La Réserve, a Leading Hotel of the World. For the past eight years, he had been with Four Seasons, most recently at the Four Seasons Vancouver as Director of Reservations and Revenue Management. Previously, he served in various operational positions at the Four Seasons Mexico City, the London Hilton on Park Lane and Le Méridien Piccadilly.

 

At the future Shangri-La Paris Palais d’Iéna, Vincent Le Gorrec will lead the sales effort as Director of Sales and Marketing, effective February 2008. A former Four Seasons man, he was part of the opening team at the Four Seasons George Cinq and the Four Seasons Provence, prior to moving to the Royal Club Evian.

 

Also at the Shangri-La Palais d’Iéna, Joelle Edwards is in as Associate Director of Sales, after six years at the Four Seasons George Cinq, where she was in charge of Reservations and Revenue Management.

 

Last but not least, René Blino becomes the pre-opening Director of Human Resources at the Shangri-La Palais d'Iéna, after several years in a comparable role for La Maison du Chocolat.

 

 

ASIA AND THE PACIFIC

 

Daniel Desbaillets has been appointed Vice Chairman of TCC Land Company in Bangkok. He was most recently a Principal at D2D in Singapore. He previously served as Chief Executive Officer for the Fullerton Hotel in Singapore before moving up as CEO for the hotel’s owners, Sino Land Company. Desbaillet’s extensive career includes key posts worldwide with Hilton International, InterContinental and Shangri-La.


Xavier Destribats has joined Morgan Stanley as a Director of Asset Management. For the past 22 years, Destribats, a Lausanne graduate, has held posts with Hyatt Hotels worldwide. Most recently, he served as the General Manager for the Grand Hyatt Roppongi. He has previously held various positions with them at the Hyatt Regency Acapulco, the Hyatt Regency Roissy in Paris, the Hyatt Regency Cancun, the Hyatt Cancun Caribe and the Hyatt Regency Jerusalem.

 

Another long-time Hyatt star who joined Morgan Stanley and Panorama Hospitality is Ernesto de Lima, who was until very recently the General Manager of the Park Hyatt Seoul. De Lima had also been the General Manager of the Park Hyatt Sydney and the Park Hyatt Melbourne. He had also held key positions at the Park Hyatt Tokyo.

 

Ingo Schweder has joined Spatality in Hong Kong as Managing Director Asia Pacific. In 2002 Schweder moved to Hong Kong with the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group as Group Director of Spas. He has previously served as Vice President Operations and Marketing for Indian Hotels and Health Resorts in India.

 

John Laing has been appointed Partner and Managing Director of the recently founded hotel division of Markus Engel’s Zeitgeist. Prior to joining Zeitgeist, Laing was with GHM and served as opening General Manager of the Nam Hai in Vietnam. He ran the Chedi in Ubud, the Serai Manggis in Bali and served as opening General Manager of the Lalu, in Sun Moon Lake, Taiwan.

 

Iwan Dietschi has been promoted to opening General Manager at the Ritz-Carlton Shenzen. He was most recently serving as Hotel Manager at the soon-to-be-closed Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong and previously held the post of Executive Assistant Manager at the Portman Ritz-Carlton in Shanghai.

 

Jean-Philippe Beghin has been named General Manager at Le Grand Hotel in Siam Reap. He moves within Cambodia from his most recent position as General Manager of Raffles Le Royal in Phnom Penh. His successor at Le Royal is Riaz Mahmood.

 

At the Four Seasons Sydney, David Perrett has been promoted to Director of Engineering, taking over for the semi-retired Phil McKendrick. He joined the property in 2003 as Assistant Director of Engineering.

 

Gregor Andreewitch has transferred to the Conrad Tokyo as General Manager. He was most recently the General Manager of the Drake in Chicago and previously the Hilton London Heathrow.

 

Swissôtel has promoted Aiden McAuley to Regional Vice-President, Asia Pacific. This is in addition to his role as General Manager of Swissôtel the Stamford, Singapore that he has held since 2005. He previously served as General Manager of Swissôtel the Howard in London.

 

Michael Murphy has been appointed Executive General Manager of the Radisson Plaza Hangzhou. He joins from the Regal Airport Hotel Hong Kong where he served as Hotel Manager. Previous assignments include Hotel Manager of the Fuchun Resort Hangzhou, Owner's Representative of Cape Sol in Phuket and Executive Assistant Manager of the Lyford Cay Club in the Bahamas.

 

Ian Jones is the new General Manager of the Swissôtel Grand Shanghai, due to open in spring 2008. He previously served as General Manager of the Swissôtel Krasnye Holmy in Moscow, and Director of Operations at both the Hilton London Metropole and the Hilton Kuala Lumpur.

 

Jean-Philippe Jacopin has been promoted to General Manager of the Namhae Hilton Golf Resort in Korea. He was most recently at the Tokyo Hilton as Director of Operations. He previously held the General Manager post at the Stormont Hotel in Belfast and the Paragon in London.


The InterContinental Grand Stanford Hong Kong has appointed Alexander Wassermann to the position of Hotel Manager. He was most recently the Resident Manager at the Mövenpick in Dubai.

Renée Brenner has been promoted Controller at the Turtle Bay Resort in Hawaii. She moves up from the position of Assistant Controller. She previously served in various positions at La Posada de Santa Fe, the Furnace Creek Inn and Grand Canyon National Park.

 

Sven Fitjer has been promoted at the Four Seasons Sydney to the position of Director of Food and Beverage. He moves up from Assistant Food and Beverage Director, taking over from Hildegard Anzenberger, who transfers to join the opening team of the Four Seasons Macau. Fitjer joined the property in 2005 as Banquet Operations Manager after serving as Restaurant Manager at the Hilton Waikoloa Village in Hawaii.


Dean Seo is the new Executive Assistant Manager Food and Beverage at the Ritz-Carlton Jakarta. He was most recently in the same position at the Mandarin Oriental Macau. He previously held various food and beverage posts at the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua and the Hyatt Regency Kauai.

 

Giorgio Olivotti moves to the Hotel Mulia in Jakarta as Senior Executive Assistant Manager Food and Beverage. He was most recently the Executive Assistant Manager Food and Beverage at the soon-to-close Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong. Previously, he served as Resident Manager at the One&Only Le Saint Géran.

 

David Kirken has transferred to the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua as Executive Assistant Manager, Rooms. He was most recently the Director of Rooms at the Ritz-Carlton Lake Las Vegas.

 

Quinton Lu has been promoted to Director of Rooms at the Four Seasons Hong Kong following the promotion of Arthur Ho to Hotel Manager at the Four Seasons Macao. Lu has been with Four Seasons since his graduation from Cornell in 1999, joining at the Four Seasons Austin. He has held various room division posts at the Four Seasons Dublin, the Four Seasons Shanghai and the Four Seasons Aviara.

 

The InterContinental Beijing Financial Street has appointed Billy Xu Director of Sales. Xu’s previous experience includes posts in Beijing, Changchun and Sanya with Starwood and Shangri-La.

 

Leighton Kitagawa has been named Travel Industry Sales Manager at the Four Seasons Hualalai, based in Los Angeles. For the past eight years, he had been with Mandarin Oriental, most recently as National Sales Manager at the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong.

 

Antony McNeil has joined the Ritz-Carlton Sanya as opening Executive Chef. He previously served as Executive Chef at the Hong Kong Country Club, the Hilton Chongqing and the Hilton Colombo.

 

Kath Townsend is the new Executive Chef at the Nam Hai in Vietnam due to be launched in December by Adrian Zecha’s GHM Hotels. Townsend was most recently overseeing the kitchen at the One&Only Kanuhura.

 

Ronald Pietruszka moves to the Ritz-Carlton Osaka as Executive Chef. He was most recently in the same position at the Ritz-Carlton Bali. He previously served as Executive Chef of the Regent Kuala Lumpur and the Regent Chiang Mai, and in various culinary positions at the Regent Singapore and the Regent Jakarta.

 

James Norman is the new Executive Sous Chef at the Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong. He moves from the same position at the Empire Hotel and Country Club in Brunei. Previously, he served in the kitchens at the Burj Al Arab in Dubai, Guy Savoy’s restaurant in Paris, the Lanesborough and the Dorchester in London.
 

 

MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA

 

Rami Sayess has been promoted to General Manager at the Four Seasons Riyadh. He moves from the Four Seasons Amman where he has served as Hotel Manager since 2005. He previously held the position of General Manager for Mövenpick in Kuwait and held various executive positions with Mandarin Oriental.

 

Swiss-Belhotel International has appointed Philip Norman Regional Director of Operations for the Middle East to be based in Dubai. He was most recently the Corporate Operations Manager for Ramada International based in Saudi Arabia.

 

At Hilton International, Martin Voskamp and Oliver Vetter have switched hotels. Voskamp takes over as General Manager for Vetter at the Hilton Nairobi with Vetter moving to assume Voskamp’s General Manager position at the Ankara Hilton.

 

Renato Moretto moves with Sonesta International to take over the company’s newly acquired Sonesta Pharaoh Beach Resort Hurghada on the Red Sea as General Manager. For the past three years he was the General Manager at the Sonesta Great Bay Beach Resort & Casino on St. Maarten.


John Wood is the new General Manager at the Mövenpick Resort & Spa Mauritius taking over for Patrick Joulain. Wood, a Lausanne graduate, recently opened the Le Méridien resort in Split, Croatia.

 

Sanjiv Hulugalle has joined the Four Seasons Damascus as Hotel Manager. He has been with the company for over eleven years most recently at the Four Seasons Langkawi as Hotel Manager.

 

Ammar Hilal joins the Safisa Palace in Turkey as Hotel Manager. He was most recently the Executive Assistant Manager Food and Beverage at the Burj Al Arab. Previously, he held key food and beverage positions at the One&Only Le Touessrok, the Lanesborough in London and the Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong.

Jean-Paul Naquin has joined the Safisa Palace in Turkey as Director of Culinary Operations. He previously served as Executive Chef for the Burj Al Arab in Dubai, Raffles Hotel Singapore and the Ritz-Carlton Seoul, among others.
 

The new Director of Food and Beverage at the Four Seasons Cairo at the First Residence is Joachim Schmitt. He has accumulated his food and beverage experience from the Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten in Munich, the Ciragan Palace in Istanbul and the Lanka Oberoi in Colombo.

 

Robert Marek joins the Safisa Palace as Director of Food and Beverage. He was most recently in the same position at the Shangri-La Kuala Lumpur. He has previously held various food and beverage positions for the Shangri-La New Delhi, the Island Shangri-La in Hong Kong and the Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur.

 

Nicolas Zographos has been appointed Director of Human Resources at the Lemuria Resort in the Seychelles. He was most recently in the same position at La Samanna. He has previously served as Human Resources Director for Club Med at their Bucaneers’Creek resort in Martinique and their Kanifinolhu resort on the Maldives.

 

Luigi Gerosa takes over from Jean Paul Naquin at Burj Al Arab in Dubai as Executive Chef. He was most recently in the same position at the Emirates Towers Hotel

Mark Patten
has joined the Atlantis Palm Dubai as Executive Chef. For the past two years, he held the position of Executive Chef at the Shangri-La Singapore. Previously, he served as Executive Chef at the InterContinental Hong Kong, Sandy Lane and the Anassa Hotel.

 

Sherif Taher has joined the soon-to-open Safisa Palace in Antalya as Rooms Division Manager. He was most recently the Front Office Manager at the Burj Al Arab and had been with Jumeirah in various positions for nine years.

 

 

Do you have news for us? Please do not hesitate to send us an e-mail at benoit@boutiquesearchfirm.com
Edited by Benoit Gateau-Cumin, Lisa Leroy & Susana Parks


The Boutique Search Firm

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