Hotel Online Special Report

Global Update: Who’s Where and Doing What
November  2001
Heads Above the Rest
The Newsletter of The Boutique Search Firm
The Americas
Vail Resorts Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Adam Aron announced the appointment of Edward Mace as Rockresorts¹ new President. Mace will be based in Denver. For the past several years, he was the President and CEO of Fairmont Hotels. Prior to joining Fairmont, he also served as President and CEO of Lincoln Hotels. Mace is a graduate of the Cornell School of Hotel Administration. 

Olivier Masson will be the General Manager of the newest Four Seasons Hotel to come on board in December, the current Park Hyatt Buenos Aires.  Masson will also oversee the Four Seasons Resort Carmelo in Uruguay, just 30 minutes by plane from Buenos Aires. Masson has been the General Manager of the Regent of Jakarta since early 1999 and before that was at the Regent of Hong Kong. Masson’s successor in Jakarta is Fazal Samad, until now the Hotel Manager at the Regent Beverly Wilshire.

Emily Snyder, formerly Director of Sales at the St. Regis New York, has been named Director of Sales and Marketing at the soon-to-open Ritz-Carlton New York on Central Park South.
Philippe Berry has been named General Manager for the Shelter Island Inns, made of the Chequit Inn and the Ram¹s Head Inn. He previously re-opened the Greenporter Hotel and Spa in Greenport, also on Long Island.

With Four Seasons in California, Jeff Doane has already left as Director of Marketing at the spanking new Four Seasons San Francisco. He had joined last year, coming from the Fairmont San Jose.

Paul Kazyak, Financial Controller from the Four Seasons Beverly Hills, moves south to the same position at the Four Seasons Newport Beach.

In San Diego at Bertrand Huc¹s Bertrand at Mr. A¹s, opening chef Todd Davis is returning to San Francisco. His position was taken over by Fabrice Poigin, formerly the chef owner of Vignola also in San Diego.

Six Continents Hotels announced that Stevan Porter has been named Chief Operating Officer for the Americas Region. He will report directly to John Sweetwood, President, Six Continents Hotels/Americas. Prior to joining Six Continents, Porter was Senior Vice President, Hilton Hotels Corporation and Executive Vice President of Hotel Operations. Porter¹s predecessor, Richard Solomons, has been promoted to Chief Financial Officer, replacing Andrew McFarlane, who left at the end of May.

Six Continents Vice Chairman Craig Hunt will retire at the end of the year after thirty years with the company. Hunt came from the Holiday Inn side, and was once President of Holiday Inns.

Tom Arasi, President and Chief Executive Officer of Lodgian, resigned less than a year after taking the job and will be succeeded by David Hawthorne as President and CEO. 

At the 237-room Sofitel Lafayette Square in Washington, DC, slated for a February 2002 opening, Sébastien Carré has been named Director of Operations, coming from a similar position at the La Plantation Resort in Mauritius. Carré joins General Manager Francis Cossutta, formerly an Area Manager for the Lucien Barriere Hotel Group. 

At Bacara, Ray Minias has left his position of Restaurant Manager at Miro to join the Ahwahnee in Yosemite as Food and Beverage Director.

Marcello Pigozzo has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of Elegant Hotels, a smallish group of resorts in Barbados and Antigua. He was previously an Area Managing Director for Sol Melia. Pigozzo is however better known in the hospitality field for his 20 years with Inter-Continental where he held various regional positions in South America and Asia.

Radisson SAS Hotels & Resorts have appointed Linda Berardi Director of Corporate Sales, meetings, incentives, conventions and expositions.  Before joining Radisson SAS, Berardi was International Sales Director for Manhattan East Suite Hotels. 

New Director of Sales at Shutters on the Beach and Casa Del Mar is Brian Jago. He was previously at the St. Regis Los Angeles, and replaces Wendy Bolte.

At the Shore Club Miami, Managing Director Charly Assaly is out, as well as Philips Hotel Group Executive Vice President Robert Colombo. Christy Turlington who was due to operate the spa is out too and Nobu is said to be giving thoughts to severing its association with the hotel¹s developers. 

Hotel sales veteran, Betsy Grey, leaves a ten-year career with Loews Hotels National Sales to take the Northeast Regional Sales Director position for the Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau. 

Bruno Jamais, the affable Maître d¹Hôtel at Daniel in New York, has made a move after seven years. He is now in the same capacity at Alain Ducasse New York, a few blocks south of Daniel.
Australian Carl Emberson has been appointed Resident Manager of the soon-to-be-opened Grand Hyatt Sao Paulo.  Emberson had joined Hyatt International almost three years ago as Executive Assistant Manager in charge of Food and Beverage at the Hyatt Regency Acapulco.

Sean Worker has joined MeriStar as Vice President of Sales. He was previously the Chief Operating Officer of Maxxim Hotels & Resorts. At Meristar he will report to Hoyt Bacon, Chief Marketing Officer. Before joining Maxxim Hotels & Resorts, Worker served as Vice President of National Sales for Bristol Hotels & Resorts. 

L¹Auberge Collection has a new Executive Chef at its exclusive Cordevalle Golf Resort near San Jose. He is Patrick Haymann, and was previously the Executive Sous Chef at KSL¹s La Quinta.
Fernando Gibaja has been promoted to Director of Food and Beverage Operations at the Ritz-Carlton Saint Thomas in the Virgin Islands. With over seven years of Ritz-Carlton, he was most recently the Assistant Food and Beverage Manager at the Ritz-Carlton Arts Barcelona in Spain. He is replaced in Barcelona by Pep Lozano, who was previously the Food and Beverage Director at the Ritz-Carlton Washington DC, and had previously logged six years at the Arts Barcelona in various food and beverage positions.

Wayne Neyens is the new Director of Human Resources at the St. Regis Monarch Beach Resort and Spa. He moved up one notch from his previous position as Personnel Manager at the St. Regis Los Angeles. At Monarch Beach he succeeds Cathy Becker, who has left the company.
Chef George Morrone has left the Fifth Floor at the Palomar in San Francisco to re-join his former employee Michael Mina as opening chef of Redwood Park, the group’s upcoming restaurant in the Transamerica Building.  Mina was Morrone¹s Pastry Chef at Aqua when the restaurant opened in 1990. The 40-year old Morrone apprenticed for two years at Brooklyn¹s River Café upon graduating from the CIA in 1983. His replacement at the Fifth Floor is no less than Laurent Gras. Gras, a former Chef de Cuisine for Alain Ducasse, was the chef of Peacock Alley at the Waldorf-Astoria, which was permanently (never say never) shut down in the aftermath of the September 11 tragedy.
At Pivotal-owned St Regis LA/Century Plaza, Director of Finance Joanne Belmonte has resigned after a few months on the job.

At Mandarin-Oriental, major cuts in the North America corporate office with the elimination of the jobs of John Strozdas, VP Operations, Debbie Croce, Vice President Human Resources and Jo Anne Hill, Vice President Marketing (the latter was based in San Francisco).

Michael Pace was named General Manager of the Clarion Bedford Hotel at Union Square in San Francisco. Most recently, he was General Manager of the Monticello Inn. Prior to that, he was the Assistant General Manager at the hip Hotel Triton, also in San Francisco.

Peter Finamore is out as General Manager of the splendid new Peninsula Chicago. A thirteen-year veteran of the company, Finamore was the General Manager of Peninsula¹s Palace in Bejing and Kowloon Hotel in Hong Kong. His replacement in Chicago has yet to be announced.

George M. Kaufman died. He was 69 and the founder of Guest Quarters. The first of Kaufman's Guest Quarters hotels opened in Atlanta in 1972, and his company developed several others in such cities as Washington, Charlotte, Houston and Tampa. In 1987, Kaufman sold the management rights and Guest Quarters name to a Boston concern that owned and managed hotels.

Asia & the Pacific
Contrary to what we announced last month, Ritz-Carlton General Manager Mark Lettenbichler did not leave Hong Kong for Singapore. The Singapore job went to Jean Mestriner, formerly (and very briefly) of the Charles Hotel in Cambridge. French (but US-educated) Director of Food and Beverage Olivier Heuchenne leaves the Ritz-Carlton Singapore after two and a half years to go in the same capacity to the Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong. Heuchenne is a ten-year Ritz-Carlton veteran for whom he also served in Cancun, Laguna Niguel and Hawaii. Taking his place in Singapore is Robert Lagerwey, a transfer from the Ritz-Carlton Seoul.

Speaking of the Ritz-Carlton Seoul, former Executive Chef Jean-Paul Naquin (who fled to Raffles Singapore) has been replaced by Patrick Duff. He comes from the Ritz-Carlton Jamaica where he held the same position.

Daniel Simon is the new Director of Food and Beverage at the Four Seasons Bali, taking over from Somock Inthavong who was promoted to Hotel Manager at the Regent of Chiang Mai in Thailand, after five years in Bali.  Simon joined Four Seasons in 1993 and held positions in Houston, Toronto, Carlsbad and Dallas before Bali.

Changes with the Peninsula Hotel Group: President Pierre Boppe left. His replacement, a Kwok, was previously in charge of the Hong Kong subway authority. Markland Blaiklock, General Manager at the Manila Peninsula, is joining the Raffles Plaza (formerly the Westin Plaza) in Singapore, in the same capacity. He is replaced in Manila by David Bachelor, formerly the Resident Manager at the Peninsula Hong Kong, whose wife belongs to a prominent Filipino family. At the Peninsula Bangkok, Executive Chef Daniel Lichtensteiger leaves after eleven years with the group, where he plied his trade in Hong Kong, Manila, Beijing and Bangkok. He is being replaced by Kristofer Luczak, a Swede, who joins from the same position at the Oberoi Bali. 

Speaking of Oberoi, Joseph Polito was recently transferred as General Manager from the Oberoi Lombok to the new Oberoi Sal Hasheesh on the Red Sea. The new 104-suite property is arguably the finest resort in Egypt. Polito was 29 when he was made GM of the Oberoi Lombok five years ago. His replacement in Lombok is John Halpin, previously the Director of Food and Beverage at the resort. When September 11 hit, Polito, a US citizen, did not feel safe in Egypt and therefore was transferred by Oberoi to open Udaivilas in the city of Udaipur, India. There is no plan for a permanent General Manager replacement yet at the Oberoi Sahl Hasheesh. In the interim, George Michael, the General Manager of Oberoi¹s Nile Cruiser (who is an Egyptian national) will look after the property.

William Barnett has left his position as Chief Operating Officer of Millennium and Copthorne after a mere three months. The company has had a history of endemic management turnover blamed by most on the mercurial temper of its chairman.

Joachim Schutte will be joining Shangri-La as Food and Beverage Director by the end of the year in one of their hotels in China. He has been the Regional Director Food and Beverage Middle East at Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts.

Also at Shangri-La, George Fistrovich will be joining the Shangri-La Beijing Kerry Center as Executive Chef. He was previously the Executive Chef at Harrods of London.

David Nowak has been named Executive Pastry Chef at Raffles, in Singapore, where he will be reporting to Executive Chef Jean-Paul Naquin. Nowak had recently taken a similar position at the Nile Hilton in Cairo, which saw its occupancy drop 60% after September 11. 

Pan Pacific Hotels and Resorts have appointed Chris Clark as Corporate Director of People Innovation.  Clark was recently the Vice President of Human Resources for Wyndham International. His experience also includes positions with Westin Hotels and Resorts, Ritz-Carlton and Conrad International. 

At Allson International Hotels and Resorts, in Kuala Lumpur, Jean-Marc Lafosse is being replaced by Philip Emmanuel as Vice President Operations, reporting to the Office of the Chairman. Emmanuel originally joined the company one year ago.

Jean-Claude Erne has left Shangri-La after twelve years, most recently as General Manager of the Shangri-La Dalian, in China. Erne just started as General Manager of the 1,008-room Mulia hotel in Jakarta.

Fredrick Arul is the General Manager of the Meliá Purosani in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Prior to his appointment Arul was based in Spain as the Corporate Director of Food & Beverage for Sol Meliá Hotels & Resorts.  Prior to that, he was the General Manager of Meliá Benoa Resort in Bali. 

Africa & the Middle East
Kenji Salz has been transferred as Executive Chef at the soon-to-open Four Seasons Resort Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt after three and a half years in the same position at the Regent of Jakarta. Prior to that, Salz was Executive Chef of the Four Seasons Jimbaran Bay in Bali, and performed the opening of the Four Seasons at Sayan, also in Bali.  He started with the company twelve years ago as a Banquet Chef at the Four Seasons Wailea on Maui.

Also with Four Seasons in the Middle East, this time in Riyadh, General Manager Bahram Sepahi (formerly the Hotel Manager at the Four Seasons Philadelphia) is joined by Hotel Manager Tarek Mourad, promoted from Director of Rooms in Cairo and by Director of Food and Beverage Frank Heinen, who also transfers from Cairo.

At the Royal Méridien Bahrain, new Area Vice President Sammy Zogbi did not take long to make some changes under the Nomura regime: in one day General Manager Laurent Voivenel (who had joined in March 2000 from the Paris Hilton where he was the Director of Operations), Director of Food and Beverage Mohammed Hassan (formerly of the Langham Hilton in London, who had joined Méridien just one year ago) and Executive Housekeeper Bradley Turner (formerly of Blakes in London) found themselves out of jobs.

Michael Kaile has been appointed as Vice President and General Manager of the upcoming 393-room Fairmont Dubai. He moves to Dubai from his previous role as Regional Vice President and General Manager of the Fairmont Hamilton Princess in Hamilton, Bermuda, a position held since 1998. He originally joined Fairmont in 1991 as General Manager of the Fairmont Waterfront in Vancouver. 

Six Continents Hotels have appointed Thomas Hilberath General Manager of the Inter-Continental and Holiday Inn hotels which are being built as part of Citystars Heliopolis in Cairo, Egypt. He was previously the opening General Manager of the Crowne Plaza Bucharest, in Rumania.

Jean-Pierre Marcadier has left his post as General Manager of the Grand Hyatt Oman and is awaiting a new assignment. 

Fedhi Abdenhader has left his position of General Manager of Holiday Inn Paris and was transferred to the Six Continents property in Malta.

In Paris, Nicolas Béliard, who was Director of Rooms at the Four Seasons George Cinq, is the new General Manager at Grace Leo-Andrieu¹s Hotel Montalembert. He takes over from Regis Lecendreux who becomes the General Manager of the group¹s flagship, Lancaster, also in Paris. 
Patrick Caron has resigned his position of General Manager at the Hotel Royal Evian, after five years. He was previously the General Manager of the boutique Hotel Vernet in Paris.

John Bamsey, who was a casualty three months ago of the Nomura takeover of Méridien, has bounced back with the title of President for Europe, for Six Continents. As such he is in charge of 170 properties.

Alain Goetschel is the General Manager of the new Andrassy Hotel, which touts itself as the first boutique hotel in Budapest. The 71-room property is built in the original Bauhaus style. Goetschel previously worked for the Warwick Royal Windsor in Brussels and the Athénée Palace in Morocco.
Hervé Le Duvehat is the new Director of Human Resources at the Ritz in Paris. He replaces Bruno Demarest who is now the Director of Human Resources of the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès in Cannes. Prior to joining the Ritz a few years ago, Demarest had logged 13 years in Cannes as Regional Director of Human Resources for the Lucien Barrière Hotel Group.

Jean-Claude Messant, 42, is the new General Manager of the Métropole Palace in Monte-Carlo. He previously worked for the Lucien Barrière Hotel Group in Deauville as General Manager of the Hotel Royal and in Paris where he handled the takeover of Fouquet’s and the Relais Carré d¹Or.

Yves Wencker is the new Director of Food and Beverage at the Ritz in London. He was most recently the General Manager at Alain Ducasse New York. Wencker also ran Cotton House for Grace Leo-Andrieu.

Edited by 
Benoit Gateau-Cumin
The Boutique Search Firm
[email protected]
A California Corporation
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Karen Jolley, Vice President, 
Europe, Middle East, Africa 
The Boutique Search Firm
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Also See:
Global Update: Who’s Where and Doing What / June 2001
Global Update: Who’s Where and Doing What / May 2001
Global Update: Who’s Where and Doing What / April 2001
Global Update: Who’s Where and Doing What  / February 2001
Global Update: Who’s Where and Doing What / The Boutique Search Firm / Nov 2000

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