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Ricci Obertelli Promoted to Global Development Director Dorchester Group and Francois Delahaye Named
Dorchester Group Operations Director

LONDON, April 26, 2004 - The Board of Directors of the London-based Dorchester Group announced major management changes today.  The Dorchester Group is the London-based hotel property and management company wholly owned by The Brunei Investment Agency.

Ricci Obertelli, Chief Operations Officer since 1997 has been promoted to position of Global Development Director of the Group, reporting directly to the Board of Directors based in Brunei.  He will now be primarily responsible for directing the Group's expansion strategy worldwide, as well as developing the brand across the globe.

Francois Delahaye, currently General Manager of The Hotel Plaza Athenee in Paris will become the Group Operations Director, as well as retaining his role at The Plaza Athenee.


Riccardo Obertelli joined the Dorchester Group as Director of Operations in 1997.  Prior to this, he was General Manager and a Director of The Dorchester in London.

Obertelli joined The Dorchester as Manager in 1986, having been involved in the management of some of London's most prestigious five-star hotels, including Claridge's, The Savoy, The Ritz and The Four Seasons.

Under Obertelli's direction, The Dorchester was awarded "The Hotel of the Year 1992" by The Egon Ronay Guide, then the UK's foremost guide to hotels and restaurants, and voted "The Best Hotel in the U.K." by the readers of Executive Travel Magazine in 1994.

In December 1995, he was named "Hotelier of the Year" by Caterer & Hotelkeeper magazine, the UK's leading hotel magazine.  He received the ultimate accolade in the hotel world in November 1996, when he was named "Independent Hotelier of the World" by Hotels magazine in the USA.


Francois Delahaye is a top level professional with in-depth management experience in Rooms Operations, Food & Beverage and Sales & Marketing gained in a wide variety of hotels from boutique luxury operations to large commercial properties.  He was appointed as General Manager of the Hotel Plaza Athenee in Paris in 1999.

His hotel experience has included the full range of international hotels from Le Plaza Athenee, Le Parc, Le Warwick and Hotel Westminster in Paris to the Warwick Hotels in New York and Hong Kong and the Sofitel in Marrakech and Mali, West Africa.

M. Delahaye received his Degree in Hotel & Restaurant Management from the New York City Community College and completed Management Training Programmes run by Sofitel Accor in Paris and The Savoy Group in London.  He was also awarded a degree from the Ecole Superieure de l'Hotellerie et de Tourisme de St. Cergue (Switzerland).  He was honoured with the Chevalier de "l'Ordre du Merite National" decoration in 1998.

Comments Ricci Obertelli, "The acquisition of The Hotel Principe di Savoia in June 2003 was a turning point for the Dorchester Group, which now owns five hotels with a total of 1,204 rooms in four of the world's leading cities.  With a clear development strategy in place, the plans are to expand the portfolio of hotels over the next ten years whilst developing the Dorchester Group brand name.  We are now strengthening our head office management team to advance the Group in this growth period.  I look forward to working alongside Francois Delahaye and Haslina Taib, our Chief Financial Officer, to grow this unique brand worldwide."

The Dorchester Group was established in 1996 as an independent UK registered company to manage an evolving international collection of luxury hotels.  The Dorchester Group is wholly owned by The Brunei Investment Agency, which is the strategic investment arm of the Ministry of Finance of the Government of Brunei and is charged with managing Brunei Government assets overseas.

The Dorchester Group's mission is to manage and, where appropriate, own an impeccable portfolio of the finest "grand" hotels in Europe and the United States, with a commitment to preserving and maintaining the highest possible standards of service and excellence.  Its intention is to bring together, over a period of time, a select number of the world's premier hotels, cultivating their reputations for individual character, friendly and caring staff, beautiful and comfortable accommodation with the highest quality food and service in superb locations.

The Dorchester Group collection of hotels consists of The Dorchester in London, The Beverly Hills Hotel in Beverly Hills, the Hotel Meurice and the Hotel Plaza Athenee in Paris and the Hotel Principe di Savoia in Milan, all of which are owned and managed by the Group.

The Dorchester Group
Martine de Geus
Marketing and Communications Director
3 Tilney Street
London W1Y 5LE
Tel:   +44 (0) 20 7317 6424

Also See: Dorchester Group Buys Hotel Principe di Savoia in Milan; Paolo Guarneri Continues as General Manager / June 2003
The Brunei Investment Agency Appoints the The Dorchester Group to Manage Hotel Plaza Athenee in Paris / Feb 2001

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