|The City of Angels extends a warm welcome to a disappointingly meagerly
attended worldwide conference of the Leading Hotels of the World. Some
blame poor attendance on the economy, others claim Los Angeles is
too far. Far from what? I thought we were the center of the world.
Others feel the recent creation of Leading Small Hotels brought in properties
so small they cannot afford the financial nor human cost of the conference.
The Italians and those from the French Riviera find the conference
to come at one of the busiest times of the year. For Swiss
hoteliers in Geneva, the Saudi Royal family has taken every luxury suite
as well as 500 of the best rooms in town for an extended stay, a
unique bonanza worth staying around for. Last but not least, some of our
local hoteliers have decided June is a lovely time for a vacation...
Island Outpost merged with Acacia, making Acacia founder William Anderson
the new company¹s Chief Executive Officer. Acacia¹s Chief Financial
Officer, Bruce Campbell, joins the new company as its CFO. Jona Liebrecht,
Island Outpost¹s former President, is now Head of Operations. Prior
to launching Acacia in 1999 under the principle of "intelligent luxury"
Anderson served as President of Abercrombie & Kent Hotels. Bruce Campbell
was Corporate Controller for Carefree Resorts, and Senior Vice President
of the Golden Door Spa division, when Wyndham gobbled up Carefree.
Seamus McManus has returned to Napa Valley after one year in Orange
County. He who used to live in St Helena while managing Meadowood from
1998 through 2000, has moved back home. He is now the General Manager of
the upcoming Calistoga Ranch, the newest project from the good people at
Jo-Anne Hill has been named Vice President Sales and Marketing, Western
Region, by Ritz-Carlton. She was until last winter the Vice President Sales
and Marketing North America for Mandarin-Oriental Hotels, a company she
had originally joined as Director of Sales and Marketing for the boutique
Mandarin-Oriental San Francisco. Prior to that, Hill had a successful career
with Four Seasons.
With St Regis taking over London¹s Lanesborough from Rosewood
(upon expiration of its initial ten-year management contract), no personnel
changes are expected, since the team there had been put into place by St
Regis President Atef Mankarios, while he was at the helm of Rosewood.
Speaking of St Regis and former Rosewood people, Gunter Richter is
taking over from Herbert Pliessnig as Managing Director of the St Regis
New York. Richter was the opening General Manager of the Remington for
Rosewood, several years ago. The Remington, after a brief Ritz-Carlton
re-incarnation, is now known as the St Regis Houston. The St Regis New
York is an old stomping ground for Richter who was the property¹s
General Manager some twenty years ago, long before the property was upgraded
to what it is now. Richter joins the St Regis from New York¹s Drake
At Fandango Resorts, principals Bill Shoaf and Matt Bailey have taken
over the 300-room Inn of the Seventh Mountain in Oregon, slating it for
a major remodel. They have appointed Clarence Hofheins as the inn's new
General Manager. Hofheins has spent more than 15 years in the hospitality
industry, 12 of those years at Robert Redford's Sundance in Utah during
the resort's huge expansion. He followed Shoaf from Sundance to Bermuda
in 1998, where he was part of the opening team for Elbow Beach following
a $40 million renovation. Before joining the Inn of the Seventh Mountain,
Hofheins was General Manager of a boutique property in Bermuda, the Newstead
Hotel. Davis Smith has been hired as Director of Sales. His experience
in the hotel industry spans more than a decade, with his latest position
being General Manager of the Honeywell Conference Center in Redmond, Washington.
Prior to that, Smith was General Manager of the 234-room Doubletree Hotel
in Eugene, Oregon. Karen Mayall, CPA, is the inn's Controller and
her latest position was Controller at the Hooker Creek Ranch in Bend, Oregon.
For six years she was employed by Four Seasons Hotels, and held the position
of Staff Accountant at the Four Seasons in Beverly Hills and the Four Seasons
Seattle. Craig Fraser has been hired as Director of Human Resources.
His most recent positions in the travel industry include being Human Resources
Director at Silvertree Properties in Snowmass Village and Sundance Resort.
Patricia McMeen is the inn's Director of Lodging. She most recently hailed
from INNspired, LLC as consultant and Housekeeping Manager.
Rudy Tauscher has been appointed by Mandarin-Oriental as Project Director
for the upcoming Mandarin-Oriental New York at AOL Time Warner Plaza. Up
until March of this year, he was the General Manager of the Trump International
Plaza, across Columbus Circle from his new home.
Markus Engel is leaving his post of Director of Food and Beverage
at the Peninsula Chicago, which he had joined in October 2000, to
become the Resident Manager at the Mandarin-Oriental Hyde Park in London.
Engel, a German, has also been the Director of Food and Beverage
at the Vierjahreszeiten in Hamburg and Peninsula's Palace in Beijing.
Susana Parks has joined Sofitel as Director of Global Entertainment
Sales, based at the Sofitel Los Angeles and responsible for selling all
Sofitel properties to the entertainment industry. She previously held the
position of Director of Sales for Bacara in Santa Barbara. Susana also
handled West Coast sales for the St Regis New York and the Four Seasons
Rich Ramirez joins the Sofitel Los Angeles as Director of Sales and
Marketing. He was until recently the Director of Sales for Palmilla, in
Mexico. Also at the Sofitel Los Angeles, Max Hamilton is the Manager of
Outlets. He previously performed food and beverage management stints at
the Fairmont Miramar, the Ritz-Carlton Huntington and the Beverly Hills
Cecile Gilmer has joined the Ritz-Carlton Huntington in Pasadena as
Associate Director of Sales. She previously was the Director of Sales at
the Shore Club in Miami, following several years in sales with Four Seasons
in Chicago and Carlsbad, California.
Jonathan and Nicole Wise will be, as of July 1, taking over as co-General
Managers of the very plush Villa Del Sol in Zihuatanejo. As such they will
be taking over from Peter Koehler. Wise, the son of a Relais & Chateau
owner, was until now the Project Director for Delamar, a soon-to-open boutique
luxury hotel in Greenwich, Connecticut. He also served as the General Manager
of New York's boutique Iroquois Hotel, following a stint as Front Office
Manager at the Mark, also in New York. He was the General Manager
of the exclusive White Barn Inn in Kennenbunkport. Wife Nicole Wise has
been responsible for selling the Bulgari perfume line to luxury hotels.
She previously was the Revenue Manager at the Mark.
Andrew Zephirin is the new General Manager at the Ritz-Carlton Marina
Del Rey, where he replaces Charles de Foucauld, who went to the Ritz-Carlton
Seoul just in time for the soccer world cup. Zephirin was previously the
Hotel Manager at the Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island.
There is another change of General Manager at the Ritz-Carlton Palm
Beach where former Marriott man Marc Hoffman is being replaced by Darryl
Sheaffer. Hoffman is returning to Marriott, in Orlando, while Sheaffer
transfers from the Ritz-Carlton Doha in Qatar, which he opened.
Jean-Pierre Alotte is the new General Manager at the 133-room Pala
Mesa resort in Fallbrook, near San Diego. Until recently Alotte was the
General Manager of Miramonte in Indian Wells, a Preferred Hotel.
Nathalie Doane is the Director of Citywide Sales for Starwood in San
Francisco. Prior to that she was a Sales Manager for the W San Francisco,
which she opened three years ago. Her husband Jeff Doane is the Director
of Sales and Marketing at the Fairmont San Francisco.
Donna Collings is the new General Manager of the Lodge at Sonoma Renaissance
Resort. She previously held the same position at the Renaissance Westchester.
Joe Malia has joined the Boston Harbor Hotel as Director of Sales and
Marketing. A native Bostonian, he relocates to Beantown from San Francisco,
where he was the Director of Marketing at the Renaissance Stanford Court.
Still in San Francisco David Akin is the Director of Marketing at the
Four Seasons, moving up from the position of Director of Sales at the Four
Seasons Scottsdale, a property he opened. Prior to joining Four Seasons,
Akin spent six and a half years as Director of Sales at the Breakers in
Palm Beach. In San Francisco he replaces Jeff Doane who left several months
ago to re-join Fairmont.
Jennifer Wachter has been hired as Director of Catering for Charlie
Palmer¹s Astra at the Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles. She joins
from La Costa in Carlsbad. Wachter's previous positions were all in New
York and included stints as Catering Manager at the Waldorf=Astoria and
Patrik Pollak moved from the Four Seasons Mexico City where he was
Assistant Director of Food & Beverage to the Ritz-Carlton Chicago (a
Four Seasons Hotel) in the same position. Pollak spent six years with the
Four Seasons Mexico City.
Jim McPartlin was recently named Director of Operations for Kimpton
Boutique Hotels in San Francisco, as well as General Manager for the 198-room
Hotel Palomar. McPartlin brings nine years of experience with Kimpton.
Most recently, he spent two years as Vice President, Human Resources and
Organizational Development. From 1993 to 1999, he worked as General Manager
for several Kimpton Boutique Hotels, beginning with San Francisco¹s
Vintage Court, followed by the Beverly Prescott in Los Angeles and the
Prescott in San Francisco.
Chris Riccardi transferred from Director of Sales at the new Ritz-Carlton
Naples Golf Course, to Director of Western Region Sales for the Ritz-Carlton
Kapalua. Riccardi will be working from his home in Southern California.
Prior to joining Ritz-Carlton, he logged five years with Renaissance in
Hawaii, Chicago and St. Thomas.
Jody Flowers has been elevated to Vice President of Business Development
with Kerry Hotels, which belong to her brother Kerry Flowers.
Jeff Ward has been named General Manager of the new Teton Mountain
Lodge, the newest property from Destination Hotels and Resorts in Wyoming.
He did not have far to travel since he came from Amangani, up the road
in Jackson Hole, where he was the Resident Manager. Prior to joining Amanresorts,
Ward was the Director of Rooms at the Spring Mountain Ranch, also in Jackson
Kyle Lott has joined the Athens Group, developers of the upcoming Ritz-Carlton
at Bachelor Gulch, near Vail. Lott is a Project Manager for the uber-posh
resort, and was previously the opening Director of Housekeeping at Miami¹s
Shore Club. Lott had previously opened, in the same capacity, the former
Regent of Las Vegas.
Stephane Clasquin, one of Los Angeles most popular Maitres d¹Hotel,
has returned to Gerard Ferry's L'Orangerie as Manager. He had logged several
years at the prestigious Relais Gourmand until he left two years ago to
take management of Mario Oliver's popular Linq in Los Angeles. Also at
L'Orangerie, Executive Chef Ludovic Lefebvre is leaving after a six-year
Deborah Potter is the opening Director of Catering at the spanking
new Sofitel Chicago. She joins from the Fairmont Chicago. Also at the Sofitel
Chicago, Julie Hellyer is the opening Executive Housekeeper, after performing
the opening of the Peninsula Chicago as Assistant Director of Housekeeping.
Renaissance Hotels Florida announced a new Marketing and Sales team
led by Randy Griffin, former Director of Marketing for the Eden Roc Renaissance
Resort & Spa in Miami Beach. The team includes Bryan Schacht, Director
of Sales, Southeast Corporate Sales, Atlanta to Carolinas. He was previously
the Director of Group Sales at the Renaissance Vinoy Resort & Golf
Club; Wendy Traurig, Director of Sales, Southeast Corporate Sales, Key
West to Orlando, was until now the Director of Sales for the past 3-1/2
years at the Renaissance Eden Roc;
Laura Alsup, Senior Account Executive, Southeast Corporate Sales, Orlando
to Atlanta, was previously a Sales Manager at the Renaissance Orlando;
Karen Nosari Hollern, Senior Account Executive, Florida State Association
Sales and Diane Jezdimir, Director of Sales, Leisure Sales, Southeastern
Park Place Entertainment Corporation has named former judge, gaming
administrator and casino executive Lorenzo Creighton as the new President
of the Flamingo Las Vegas. Creighton, 49, formerly served as Park Place's
Corporate Vice President for Government and Community Affairs. Before joining
the Park Place corporate group last year, Creighton served for six years
as the executive in charge of operations at Bally's Casino in New Orleans.
Trey Matheu was named Director of Lodging at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort
& Spa. Prior to joining Nemacolin, Matheu was Resident Manager at Snake
River Lodge & Spa in Teton Village, Wyoming. Also at Nemacolin,
Kenneth Migneault has joined the resort as the Chef at Seasons restaurant
at Woodlands Spa. Prior to joining Nemacolin Woodlands, Migneault was Executive
Chef at Red Mountain, in Utah, Chef de Cuisine at Miraval, Tucson, and
Executive Sous Chef at Maine Course in Tucson.
Chuck Katan has been appointed President of the Coral Collection of
Fine Hotels & Resorts, a group of eight small hotels in Florida and
the Caribbean, which he joined in 1999. He previously was Vice President
of Sales and Marketing for Noble House Hotels, Resorts and Hideaways.
Prior to Noble House, he directed the worldwide sales effort to establish
a portfolio of more than 50 member hotels for Inter-Continental Hotels
and Resorts¹ Global Partner Division.
Ellen Thornton has joined the Hotel Bel-Air as Director of Sales after
two years with The Leading Hotels of the World, where she worked as a Sales
Manager in the Los Angeles office. Prior to that, she served as National
Sales Manager for the Ritz-Carlton Huntington in Pasadena.
Also at the Bel-Air, the new Controller is Ed Anonas, who came from
the W Los Angeles, the former Westwood Marquis. He also was the Controller
at Ian Schrager¹s Mondrian in West Hollywood.
At the St Regis Monarch Beach, Food and Beverage Director Charles Lennox
III was replaced by Paul O'Dowd, who was most recently in Florida as Director
of Operations at the Boca Country Club. He has also held positions
as Corporate Director of Food and Beverage for Kimpton and Director of
Food & Beverage for the Highlands Inn in Carmel, the Homestead in Virginia
and L'Auberge Del Mar in San Diego as well General Manager of Aqua San
Francisco. Lennox is now the Director of Food and Beverage at the Regent
The Santa Barbara Inn has hired Susie Couch as Director of Sales. She
previously was the Director of Sales and Catering for the Holiday Inn Santa
Martin Finch was named Regional Director of Sales for Fiesta Americana
and Fiesta Americana Grand Hotels and Resorts. Finch¹s extensive sales
career features management and sales positions with the Manele Bay Hotel
and Lodge at Koele, the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and LuxuryLink.com.
John Arnett is the new Head of Operations at Brad Korzen's Kor Group
in Los Angeles. Until recently he was Vice President of Operations for
the Kimpton Group. Arnett also was the opening General Manager of the late
Ritz-Carlton Mauna Lani on the Big Island of Hawaii.
Also at the Kor Group, Kurt Wiksten has been transferred from General
Manager at the Estrella Inn in Palm Springs to Food and Beverage Director
at the soon-to-open Viceroy in Santa Monica. The restaurant at the Viceroy,
incidentally, will be operated by Tim and Lisa Goodell, owners of three
highly successful restaurants in Orange County, Aubergine, Troquet and
At KSL's La Quinta, Director of Food and Beverage Randy O'Connor, who
had held the position since September 2000, has been replaced with Alex
Kim, previously the hotel's Director of Conference Services. Kim is now
in charge of both Conference Services and La Quinta¹s $30 million
food and beverage operation.
At the Plaza-Athénée New York, Director of Housekeeping
Elizabeth Cheung has left. Her successor is Anna Marie Eapen.
Win Person has been named Director of Food and Beverage at Las Vegas'
Bellagio, following a seven-year career with Four Seasons in Mexico City,
Houston and Dallas. Person is a graduate of the Ecole Hôtelière
Former Hyatt Executive Cody Plott has been named President and Chief
Operating Officer at Pebble Beach Company. The position had been vacant
since the untimely passing of John Chadwell in February. Plott, 52, was
previously the President of the commercial real estate brokerage firm of
Colliers Seeley, based in Southern California. He also spent more than
22 years with Hyatt Hotels & Resorts, rising to Regional Vice President
of Sales in Southern California.
Diane Briskin, after opening up the Ritz-Carlton New York Central Park
South as an outside consultant, now runs the hospitality division of Dan
Francesca Gadaleta has been Named Director of Sales and Marketing at
the Muse in New York. Swiss-educated Gadaleta was previously with
Swissôtel, including three years with the Swissôtel Beijing.
She most recently functioned as Associate Director of Sales at Swissôtel
New York, The Drake.
Rockresorts announced the appointment of Michael Shindler as Vice President
of Development. Most recently, he served as Vice President of Development
for the Americas at the Mandarin-Oriental Hotel Group.
Adolf Fratton has been named General Manager of LaSource, Grenada.
Since 1997, he was General Manager at the Muskoka Sands Resort & Conference
Center in Ontario. Prior to this, he held the same position at the Grenada
Renaissance Resort from 1994-1996.
Jim Bode has been named General Manager of Miami¹s Roney Palace
Beach Resort. Prior to joining, Bode served seven years as General Manager
of the Ft. Lauderdale Marriott. Also at the Roney Palace, Tim Paulus
has been named Director of Sales and Marketing. He previously held a similar
position at the Westin Hotel in Fort Worth, Texas.
Jean-Francois Pelaez joins the Lyford Cay Club in Nassau as Executive
Chef. Pelaez was the Executive Chef of the Four Seasons Mexico City for
the past three years.
The Pinehurst Company has announced the hiring of Andy Finn as Senior
Vice President, Sales. Most recently, he worked as Vice-President of Sales,
Resorts and Specialty Markets for Starwood, and was based in Chicago.
At Ritz-Carlton, some substantial changes at the corporate office with
the departure of Vice President Sales and Marketing Jim Shultonhauver to
Ian Schrager's hotel group. He has been replaced by Bruce Himmelstein,
who comes from sister company Marriott. Also at Ritz-Carlton, Corporate
Director of Catering Eddie Layton has left the company to become a meeting
planner for Home Depot.
Charlton Hines has been appointed General Manager of the Loews Miami
Beach, replacing Mike Welly who was there no more than a few months. Hines
comes from the soon-not-to-open Ritz-Carlton South Beach in Miami. He is
a former Marriott General Manager.
Eric Torralba is the new Executive Chef at Domaine Chandon in Napa
Valley. The Frenchman, who was selected after a very complex search process,
was most recently at Masraff's Restaurant in Houston, but also spent eight
years as the Executive Chef on board the Savarona, arguably the world's
most luxurious and largest private yacht. Globe trotting Torralba also
once earned a Michelin star for the restaurant Westra Piren in Goteborg,
John Moser has been named the new Chief Marketing Officer of Manhattan
East Suite Hotels. Moser most recently served as General Manager of the
company's luxury hotel The Benjamin, which opened in April 1999. Prior
to The Benjamin, Moser was General Manager of the company's Dumont Plaza
for eight years. Before that he was General Manager at the Shelburne Murray
Hill following positions at the Beekman Tower Hotel and the Surrey Hotel.
Michael Pendergast has been appointed General Manager of the Fairmont
Kansas City. He originally joined Fairmont in 1994 where he held his most
recent position as Hotel Manager for the Fairmont New Orleans.
Hervé Pennequin is the Dining Room Manager and Wine Director
at the Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel. A true wine expert, Pennequin previously
ran his own wine import company, following a two-year stint as the Head
Sommelier at Nicolai's Roof at the Atlanta Hilton and Towers.
Cynthia Chung has joined the stylish new Ritz-Carlton New York Central
Park South as Director of Diplomatic Affairs. She most recently was at
the Plaza for four years in the same capacity. Prior to that, Chung was
the Front Office Manager at the Waldorf=Astoria.
At the Peninsula Chicago, former Assistant Director of Food and Beverage
Eric Faivre was promoted to the Peninsula Bangkok as the Director of Food
and Beverage. He replaces Hans Hordijk who transferred to the Peninsula
Manila. Faivre¹s replacement in Chicago is Jonathan Crook who was
transferred from the Peninsula New York.
Last month we announced by mistake that Araj Azarbazin was named General
Manager of the W New York Times Square. We had the city right, but the
square wrong: he went in fact to the W New York Union Square. Speaking
of the W New York Times Square, exit its opening General Manager Daniel
Bergman, who left the company after opening three of its Manhattan properties.
Prior to joining W, Bergman was the General Manager of the Wyndham Bel-Age
in West Hollywood for over three years.
Brian Dye has left the St. Regis Monarch Beach where he was the Director
of Sales and Marketing. Prior to joining the property, he had spent several
years in the same capacity at the Hilton Waikoloa on the Big Island of
Hawaii. Laura Madrid, who previously served at St. Regis Monarch Beach
as a Sales Manager, is heading St Regis' new Atlanta sales office. Rob
Roche, former Regional Director of Sales with Rosewood Hotels & Resorts,
is heading the Los Angeles office, and will be based at the St. Regis Los
Angeles. Lori Lauman, former Director of Sales with the Peninsula Beverly
Hills, is overseeing the New York regional sales office.
Richard Sorensen has been promoted from Front Office Manager at the
Four Seasons Resort Nevis, to Rooms Manager at the Four Seasons Resort
Carmelo, in Uruguay. He was previously with the Four Seasons Aviara and
Four Seasons Vancouver.
Guy Luzy is the opening General Manager for the chic, boutique, Le
St James, in Montreal. He was previously with Delta Hotels, also in Canada.
At the spanking new Sofitel Montreal, Denis Goupille is the Financial
Controller, coming from the Hilton Lac Lamy and Méridien Toronto;
Veronique Loiseau is Front Office Manager, moving up one notch from
the Sofitel New York where she was the Assistant Front Office Manager;
Joel Gosselin is Director of Engineering, coming from the Sheraton
Montreal, the Inter-Continental Montreal (which he opened) and the Hilton
Bonaventure, also in Montreal; Denis Dupart is the Director of Operations,
coming from Accor Asia Pacific where he spent seven years;
Genevieve Gravel is Director of Human Resources, coming from Delta
Hotels in Montreal.
Jérome Laurent is the new Chef de Cuisine at Julien, the signature
restaurant of Le Méridien Boston. He was previously the Chef at
Le Relais in Great Falls, Virginia, and had spent two years as Executive
Chef at France¹s Chateau de Marcay, a Relais & Chateau.
Omni Hotels has appointed five Area Managing Directors. They are Peter
Austin, General Manager of the Omni Shoreham, a ten-year Omni veteran;
Steven Ferran, General Manager of the Omni Royal Orleans, who had joined
Omni Hotels in 1998; Offer Nissenbaum, General Manager of the Omni Berkshire
Place in New York, who joined Omni in 1999, from The Plaza also in New
York; Troy Schroeder, Managing Director of the Omni Atlanta, joined Omni
Hotels in 1992. Mark Yardis General Manager of the Omni Richmond Hotel,
joined Omni Hotels in 1987.
Al Petrone has been recruited by Ian Schrager Hotels to be the General
Manager of New York¹s Hudson, replacing Mark O'Brien who moved to
Connecticut to take care of his own business. Petrone joins Schrager after
leaving his post as Vice President for Sheraton brand operations at Starwood.
He previously was Director of Operations for the W brand, and Director
of Planning and Development for Starwood. He originally joined Sheraton
in 1992, from General Electric.
Also at Schrager Hotels in New York, Klaus Ortlieb left Royalton to
launch his own venture.
Lesley Carey is the new General Manager at Palm Springs' historic La
Mancha. A Canadian, she recently was the Director of Sales and Marketing
at Ian Schrager¹s Mondrian in West Hollywood.
Chris Komanowski has joined Harrah's Entertainment as Vice President.
Komanowski, a Cornell graduate, was formerly the Vice President of Hotel
Development for Ritz-Carlton.
At the Peabody Memphis Elise Wiggins has been appointed Chef de Cuisine
for Capriccio, the hotel's Italian restaurant.
Shannon Short has been named Public Relations Manager for the Grand
America Hotel in Salt Lake City, the 1,000-or-so-room hotel that touts
itself a "boutique" property. Short was previously part of the 2002 Winter
Olympic Organizing Committee.