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HEI Hospitality Names Ernie Freedman Senior VP
& Chief Financial Officer; To Oversee Hotel
Portfolio Finances and HEI Hospitality Fund


NORWALK, Conn., March 16, 2005 — HEI Hospitality, a rapidly growing hotel ownership and operating company, today announced that it has named Ernie Freedman to the position of senior vice president and chief financial officer.  In the new position, he will oversee finance and accounting functions and play an active role in hotel investor relations for HEI and its HEI Hospitality Fund.  Freedman also will play a major role in the financing of appropriate levels of equity and debt for the fund’s acquisition program and will be admitted as a partner in all existing and future HEI investments.

“Freedman’s arrival comes during a period of rapid growth for HEI and gives us tremendous expertise and bench strength to assist us in the intricate financing aspects of our acquisition program,” said Gary Mendell, chief executive officer.  “His background in accounting and finance will greatly facilitate our ability to efficiently implement our business plan.”

Prior to joining HEI, Freedman served with GE Real Estate, a subsidiary of GE, in positions of increasing responsibility and scope, including global operations controller and global manager of finance of investments and acquisitions.  A Certified Public Accountant, he spent seven years with Ernst & Young, most recently as a senior manager in the EYKL Real Estate Group.  He holds a BS degree from the University of Virginia.

“I am excited about the opportunity to join HEI at a time when tremendous growth within the company is evident,” Freedman said.  “Gary and I are focused on strengthening the finance and accounting functions throughout the organization, to provide the best in class financial and investor reporting, as well as unique analysis tools to measure the success of our assets."

HEI Hospitality, headquartered in Norwalk, Conn., is an ownership/investment firm that owns and/or operates 25 first-class and full-service hotels throughout the United States under such well-known brand names as Marriott, Sheraton, Westin and Hilton.  Merritt Hospitality is an independent hotel management company and a wholly-owned subsidiary of HEI Hospitality.


Gary Mendell
HEI Hospitality
(203) 849-6065

Also See: Clark Hanrattie Joins HEI as Senior Vice President and Chief Investment Officer; Company Plans to Increase Hotel Investments to More Than $1 Billion / January 2004
HEI Hospitality Acquires its First Hotel, the 410-room Sheraton Music City in Nashville, Tennessee / June 2004

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