|David Kurland has been appointed Managing Director at Acqualina, by
developer Jules Trump and Rosewood Hotels and Resorts. The 51-story luxury
beachfront property, which promises to be one of the country’s finest,
is slated to open in November. Kurland was previously in Puerto Rico as
the President and Managing Director of the cool Water Club and its sister
property the Excelsior. He also was, for many years, the President and
Managing Director of the El San Juan Hotel and Casino. Kurland is no stranger
to Miami, where he ran the Grand Bay for six years.
Duncan Graham has been named General Manager at San Ysidro Ranch. Prior
to that, he was with Starwood as General Manager of the St. Regis Washington,
DC. He had joined the property four years ago as Hotel Manager from the
St. Regis Houston.
Sileshi Mengiste has been appointed Executive Director of Hotel Operations
at Wynn Las Vegas. He was previously the General Manager of the St. Regis
Houston. Mengiste also managed the Clift in San Francisco.
William Taylor has been appointed General Manager at the Ritz-Carlton
Chicago. He transfers from the Four Seasons Atlanta where he held the same
position. In Chicago, he replaces Christoph Schmidinger, who is now the
General Manager of the Four Seasons New York, replacing Thomas Steinhauer.
Robert Nelson has been appointed General Manager at the Lodge at Cordillera.
He was previously the General Manager and Vice President of Hospitality
at the Woodlands Resort and Conference Center.
Mehdi Eftekari has been appointed General Manager of the Four Seasons
Los Angeles, taking over from William Mackay who transferred to Hong Kong.
Eftekari previously held the top job at the Four Seasons Newport Beach.
His successor in Newport Beach is Thomas Gurtner, who comes from the Four
Seasons Boston where he was the General Manager and a Regional Vice President.
Gurtner’s successor in Boston is Peter O’Colmain, formerly the General
Manager of the Regent Beverly Wilshire.
At the Regent Beverly Wilshire, Rada Arora takes over from O’Colmain.
He comes from the Four Seasons Wailea Maui, where he had been the General
Manager for the past three years.
Philip Barnes has been appointed Regional Vice President, Pacific Northwest
Region, Fairmont Hotels and General Manager at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver.
Barnes was most recently the Regional Vice President, Operations, Western
Canada, Delta Hotels, and General Manager of the Delta Vancouver Airport
Hotel. Prior to joining Delta (now part of Fairmont), Barnes was the Chief
Operating Officer of Stamford Hotels and Resorts. Before that, Barnes had
held General Manager positions at the Regent of Auckland, the Four Seasons
Singapore, the Shangri-La Singapore and Houston’s former Four Seasons Inn
on the Park.
Joseph Violi has been appointed General Manager at the Orrington Hotel
in Evanston. He most recently was the General Manager of the Swissôtel
Chicago. He also worked in California before as Managing Director of the
Cliffs in Shell Beach. Violi, a Cornell graduate, also logged fourteen
years with Hyatt and six with Ritz-Carlton.
Lisa Impagliazzo has been named General Manager of Le Méridien
Beverly Hills. She will be cumulating this position with that of Area Vice
President Americas for Méridien Hotels. In Beverly Hills, she replaces
Laurence Saward who left the company.
Kurt Wiksten has been appointed Resort Manager at Lajitas, "Texas’ Ultimate
Hideout". Wiksten has been the Director of Operations at Le Méridien
Beverly Hills for the past two years. He also took part in the opening
of the Kor Group’s two Viceroys in Santa Monica and Palm Springs.
Andrea Melotti has been appointed Managing Director of the Bentley Group
in Miami. Until a few months ago, Melotti was the General Manager of the
Raleigh and previously the Managing Director at the Sagamore also in Miami.
Denis Dupart has been transferred to the Sofitel Lafayette Square in
Washington, DC where he will be taking over from Francis Cossuta as General
Manager. Cossuta will be moving to Egypt in a similar capacity. Dupart
was previously the Director of Operations at the Sofitel Montreal and also
worked in Asia for the Sofitel and Novotel brands for several years.
Henri Birmele has been promoted to General Manager at Shutters on the
Beach. He had joined the property a year ago from the Viceroy where he
was the opening General Manager. Prior to joining the Kor Group, Birmele
worked with Starwood as the Hotel Manager of the St. Regis Hotel and Spa
in Los Angeles where he was a member of the opening team. At Shutters,
he replaces Armella Stepan who has been promoted to Vice President of Brand
and Marketing for the Edward Thomas Companies, the owners of Shutters on
the Beach and Casa Del Mar. Prior to that, Stepan had been the opening
General Manager at the Standard in Hollywood.
At Casa Del Mar, Klaus Mennekes has been promoted to Vice President
of Operations for the Edward Thomas Companies.
Shaun Robinson has been named General Manager of the Doubletree Hotel
San Diego/Del Mar. Robinson most recently served as General Manager
of the Hilton Scottsdale Resort & Villas, a position he held for three
Michel Chertouh has been promoted to General Manager at the Intercontinental
Sao Paulo. Chertouh has been with the Intercontinental Hotel Group for
twenty years and previously held the same position at the Crowne Plaza,
also in Sao Paulo. He also worked at other Intercontinental properties
in Rio de Janeiro, Barcelona, London and Paris.
At the Adam’s Mark St. Louis the new General Manager is Wolfgang Waldor.
He comes from the Hyatt Regency Buffalo. The position had been left vacant
since Jeffrey Jacobs left in January.
Laura Neumann has been promoted to the position of Vice President and
General Manager of the Cheyenne Mountain Resort in Colorado Springs by
Benchmark Hospitality. A seventeen-year company veteran she held regional
positions with Benchmark for several years.
Jean-Luc Deguines has been named General Manager of New York’s classic
Knickerbocker Club. Deguines was the Resident Manager at the Mandarin-Oriental
Hotel du Rhône in Geneva. He had worked in New York before also with
Mandarin-Oriental at the Mark as Executive Assistant Manager in charge
of Food and Beverage.
Antoine Berberi has been appointed General Manager of the Westin Governor
Morris following a thirteen-year career with InterContinental, where his
last position was that of General Manager at the InterContinental Al Ain.
Berberi is an IHMI Cornell-Essec graduate.
Marie-Christine Albini has been appointed General Manager at the Hotel
Carl Gustav in St. Barthelemy. Albini was previously the Rooms Division
Manager at the Kilimanjaro in Courchevel. She had worked in St. Barthelemy
before as the Operations Manager at Guanahani.
Joseph Kirtley has been transferred by Ian Schrager Hotels from the
Paramount in New York (which was just sold to Hard Rock International)
to the Mondrian in Los Angeles. Lateral move for Kirtley, who keeps his
same title of Hotel Manager. A graduate of Michigan State University, he
has been with Ian Schrager Hotels since 1995.
Mark Fischer is the opening General Manager of Kimpton's newest Boutique
property, the Onyx Hotel, in Boston, set to open mid-May. Fischer was previously
the Assistant General Manager at Kimpton's Hotel Marlowe in Cambridge.
Before that, he was the Rooms Division Manager at the Chambers in New York.
Enrico Lindenhahn has been appointed Executive Assistant Manager in
charge of the French Village at the Beaches Turks and Caicos Resort. Lindenhahn
was previously the Food and Beverage Director at Grande Sport Villa Golf
Resort and Spa in Jamaica.
At Rosewood’s soon-to-open Acqualina, Deborah Yager-Fleming has been
named Director of Sales and Marketing. She joins following a two-year stint
as a Vice President with our friendly competitor Executive Search International.
Yager also worked as Vice President of Marketing for Island Outpost and
held several senior management positions with The Leading Hotels of the
Teresa Holden joined Allison Kneubuhl’s Allimar as Vice President Marketing.
Holden has spent over twenty years marketing luxury hotels. She has been
affiliated with Ritz-Carlton, Wyndham, Ian Schrager Hotels, W Hotels and
St. Regis Hotels & Resorts. Most recently, she was the Director of
Sales and Marketing at the St. Regis Los Angeles.
Michele Rees has been appointed Director of Sales and Marketing at the
soon-to-open Elk Mountain Resort outside Telluride. Rees previously worked
in Chicago for six years as Vice President of Marketing and Sales with
a full service travel agency. She also held various Sales and Marketing
positions with Hyatt International in Germany and Switzerland. Elk Mountain
Resort is managed by Jack Westergom’s Manhattan Hospitality Advisors, of
Jeff Karlson has been appointed Regional Director of Sales & Marketing
for Hilton International in Latin America to be based in Sao Paulo.
Karlson was formerly the Vice President of Marketing for Starwood Hotels
in Latin America. Prior to that, he held the position of Regional Director
of Sales & Marketing for InterContinental Hotels in Argentina, Brazil,
Denise Miller has been named Regional Director of Sales for Destination
Hotels and Resorts, based in New York City. Miller was previously the Director
of National Accounts for Kimpton Hotels in San Francisco.
Julia Gajcak has been named Vice President, Communications for the Ritz-Carlton
Hotel Company. She replaces Stephanie Platt who retired after fourteen
years with the company. Gajcak previously worked for Four Seasons Hotels
and Resorts. She started her Four Seasons career in Bali and most recently
served as Regional Director of Public Relations for Asia.
Marjan Sabetian has joined Four Seasons Hotels as Public Relations Manager
at the Regent Beverly Wilshire. She was previously the Director of Sales
and Marketing at the Mosaic also in Beverly Hills and at the Beverly Plaza
John Makhamaltchi has joined Small Luxury Hotels in San Francisco as
their Regional Director of Sales. He was previously the opening Director
of Sales and Marketing at the Carneros Inn in Napa Valley and the Director
of Sales at San Francisco’s luxe Huntington.
Nanci Figueroa has been promoted to Area Director of Sales and Marketing
for two of Kimpton’s three Chicago properties, the Hotel Monaco Chicago
and the Hotel Burnham. Figueroa joined Kimpton in 2001 when she was
brought on board as Director of Sales and Marketing for the Hotel Monaco
Kimberly Schaller has been promoted to Vice President, Chief Marketing
Officer for Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Company. In her new role,
Schaller will maintain her former responsibilities as Vice President of
Marketing – a role she held for seven years.
Also at Hershey, Timothy Bugas becomes Vice President of Sales. Bugas
began with the Company in 2001 as the Managing Director of Resorts Sales
for Hershey Resorts. He has held various Director Sales roles in the hospitality
industry including at the Greenbrier and the Homestead.
Mike Pistana is the new Director of Leisure Sales at Bellagio in Las
Vegas. Pistana has been employed by MGM Mirage for the past ten years in
various Hotel Operations and Sales & Marketing positions at Las Vegas’
Golden Nugget and at the Beau Rivage Resort in Biloxi.
Mark Wallisa has been named Director of Sales and Marketing at the Millennium
Hotel Cincinnati. Wallisa previously held the position of Vice President
of Sales with the Greater Cincinnati Convention & Visitors Bureau.
He had also served as Regional Vice President of Sales and Marketing for
GES Exposition Services, one of the country’s leading trade show and event
Peter Dyckes has joined the Four Seasons San Francisco as its Director
of Sales. He comes from Loews Resorts in Orlando. He takes the spot left
vacant when Joe Dunnavant left San Francisco to join Four Seasons’ Western
Sales Office in Beverly Hills.
Also at the Four Seasons San Francisco, Kevin O’Rourke has joined as
Sales Manager. O’Rourke previously logged seven years with Hyatt in San
Francisco, first at the Park Hyatt, then at the Hyatt Regency at Embarcadero
Michael Consuelo has been appointed Director of Group Sales at the Grand
Wailea Resort Hotel & Spa. Most recently, he was the Group and Convention
Sales Director at the Disneyland Resort.
Kimberley Curtis Johnston has been promoted to Director of Resort Operations
at Sea Trail Plantation, a property she joined in 2002 as Director of Sales,
Conference Services and Banquets.
Oliver Wharton has been appointed Managing Director of Fix at the Bellagio.
Wharton, a Cornell hotel graduate, previously worked as Director of Restaurants
Operations for Michael Mina Restaurants where he was responsible for the
openings of Nob Hill and Seablue at the MGM Grand Las Vegas. Prior to that,
Wharton worked with Jean-Georges Vongerichten for several years including
two as the General Manager of the much-lamented Vong in London.
Ana Lavin has been appointed Director of Sales and Marketing at the
soon-to-open Inn at Palmetto Bluff, the latest Auberge Resort, in Bluffton,
South Carolina. Most recently, Lavin served as Director of Sales and Marketing
for the Coastal Hotel Group, whose properties include the Bitter End Yacht
Club, Sunset Waters Beach Resort, the Inn at Morro Bay and its sister property,
the Sea Venture Resort.
Patrick Pollak has been transferred back to Mexico by Four Seasons as
Director of Food and Beverage at the Four Seasons Punta Mita. Most recently,
he was the Assistant Director of Food and Beverage at the Ritz-Carlton
Chicago. Pollak has been with Four Seasons for eight years and was at the
Four Seasons Mexico City prior to moving to Chicago.
Wim Steenbakkers has been appointed Director of Operations for Eleuthera
Properties in the Bahamas. Prior to that, Steenbakkers was at the head
of a consulting firm specializing in the development and marketing of European
Resort properties. He also owned a small luxury resort in Quebec.
Frank Fraser has been named Director of Catering and Conference Services
at the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort & Spa. He most recently was at
the Peninsula Beverly Hills where he was the Director of Private Events
for two years. Prior to the Peninsula, he was with Starwood as a Catering
Sales Manager at the Phoenician.
Greg Martinez has been named Director of Sales at the Doubletree Hotel
& Executive Meeting Center in Berkeley. His previous experience includes
Director of Sales for the South Seas Resort, on Captiva Island and Director
of Sales at the Fairmont Dallas. Most recently, he served as the
Area Director of Sales and Marketing for the San Francisco Bay Hotel Collection,
a collection of five San Francisco hotels.
Alexander Kim has been named Vice President and General Manager of Conference
Services and Banquet Operations at Atlantis on Paradise Island. Prior to
joining Atlantis, Kim was at La Quinta Resort and Club where he served
as Director of Conference Services and Director of Food and Beverage.
David Bodette has been appointed Director of Food and Beverage at the
Langham Hotel Boston, formerly Le Méridien Boston. He was previously
the Director of Tasting Room Operations at Napa Valley’s Niebaum-Coppola
winery. Bodette also served as Director of Food and Beverage at L'Auberge
du Soleil, at the Elliott in Seattle (now the Grand Hyatt) and at the Elbow
Cyndi Roppolo has joined the Sofitel New York as Director of Catering
Sales. She was previously the Director of Catering at the Intercontinental
New York Central Park South.
Oscar Gomez has been promoted to Director of Engineering for Accor Hotels
New York City, overseeing the Sofitel and Novotel. He was previously the
Director of Engineering at the Sofitel New York.
Beverly Ramsook has been appointed Director of Revenue of Accor Hotels
New York City, overseeing the Sofitel and the Novotel. Prior to that, she
was the Director of Revenue for the Sofitel New York.
Karen Webster has been appointed Controller of Accor Hotels New York
City. She will oversee the Sofitel and Novotel properties. Before her promotion,
she was the Controller at the Novotel New York.
James Lao has joined the Patina Group as Director of Catering at the
Music Center for the Performing Arts. Lao most recently worked at the Regent
Beverly Wilshire in both catering and banquets. He also spent ten years
with Hyatt Hotels and two years with the Ritz-Carlton Marina del Rey also
Fiona Milne has been appointed Front of the House Manager at Necker
Island, Sir Richard Branson's private island located in the British Virgin
Islands. She comes from the Draycott Hotel in London where she was an Assistant
Manager. Prior to that, Milne was with Mandarin-Oriental for four years
at their London and Miami properties.
Jim Root has been appointed Director of the Spa at Miraval. He previously
held the same position at Meadowood, where he stayed for four years.
Nicolas Sangros is the new Restaurant Director at Joel Antunes’ restaurant
in Atlanta where he replaces Frédéric Serol who is moving
back to France. Sangros just completed two years as the Director of Restaurants
at the Sofitel Lafayette Square in Washington, DC.
Grant MacPherson has been promoted to Executive Chef at Wynn Las Vegas.
He previously served as Executive Chef developing launch plans for the
upcoming Wynn Resort Macau. Previously he opened Bellagio in Las Vegas
and for five years oversaw its culinary operations. MacPherson was the
Executive Chef at Singapore’s Raffles Hotel and at the Datai in Langkawi.
Also at Wynn Las Vegas, Frédéric Robert has been appointed
Executive Pastry Chef. Robert has spent the last twenty five years working
side by side with Alain Ducasse.
Christian Delouvrier is back on the scene of one of his first successes
as the new Chef at Alain Ducasse New York (where he replaces Didier Elena
who went back to France). He plies his trade in the very location where
his award-winning Les Célébrités was launched. From
there, Delouvrier had moved to the now-shuttered Lespinasse at the St.
Regis New York. His first hit in New York was the also shuttered Restaurant
Maurice at the Hotel Parker-Méridien, which was opened in 1981.
Michael Bilger is leaving the Lodge at Sonoma where he had been the
Executive Chef since May 2002, to be the opening Chef at the Nord Family
Wine Garden, set to open in June in Yountville. Bilger had also worked
as a Sous Chef at Boulevard and Moose’s, both in San Francisco.
Denis Jaricot is the new Executive Chef at Rosewood’s Little Dix Bay.
He was previously the Executive Chef at the CuisinArt Resort and Spa in
Anthony Keene is the new Executive Chef at Little Palm Island. Prior
to that, Anthony had held Executive Chef positions at the Ojai Valley Inn,
the Paradise Valley Country Club and at several Ritz-Carlton properties.
Dennis Leary has left Francis Ford Coppola’s wine- friendly Rubicon
after four years. His replacement as Executive Chef is Stuart Brioza, formerly
of Tapawingo in Ellsworth, Michigan, and one of Food & Wine magazine's
top 10 American chefs of 2003.
Richard Bies is the new Pastry Chef at the Chanler in Newport. He most
recently worked at the Fairmont San Francisco as the Executive Pastry Chef,
a position he also held at the Four Seasons Atlanta and the Omni Atlanta.
Eric Damidot has been appointed Executive Chef at the Ritz-Carlton Atlanta.
Damidot was previously at France’s plush new Palais de La Méditerranée
in Nice as its Chef de Cuisine. Damidot also worked in Las Vegas at the
Rio Hotel and Casino as Executive Sous Chef and at Bellagio as Executive
Banquet Chef. Damidot had worked with Ritz-Carlton before at their San
Francisco and Palm Beach properties.
Thomas Ryan is the new Executive Chef at the Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove.
Originally joining Ritz-Carlton Hotels in 1990 in Marina Del Rey, Ryan
left six years later to join Rosewood Hotels. He also opened hotels for
Omni and the Grand America in Salt Lake City for the 2002 Olympics. His
return to Ritz-Carlton came in 2002 in Atlanta.
Lewis Butler is the new Executive Chef at Rancho Bernardo Inn. He was
previously the Executive Sous Chef at the Four Seasons Los Angeles. Originally
from Canada, Lewis had worked with Four Seasons in their Ottawa, Montreal,
Vancouver and Atlanta properties before moving to Los Angeles.
Ryan Johnston was briefly named Executive Chef at Beaucoup in San Francisco.
He replaced Bruno Davaillon who left to become the Executive Chef at Alain
Ducasse's Mix scheduled to open in September at the Mandalay Bay Hotel
and Casino in Las Vegas. Johnston held his position for a month or so before
Beaucoup was shuttered by its owners, San Francisco’s Real Restaurant Group.
Christian Haug has been appointed Pastry Chef at the Ritz-Carlton Naples.
He was previously the Assistant Pastry Chef at the Ritz-Carlton Cleveland.
Haug also worked at the Ritz-Carlton Tyson’s Corner.