March 2023 (London) – Rocco Forte Hotels announces the appointment of Richard Cooke as Cluster Managing Director, United Kingdom. Formerly General Manager of The Balmoral Hotel, the first hotel under the Rocco Forte Hotels flag, Richard will now take leadership responsibility for both The Balmoral Hotel in Edinburgh, and Brown’s Hotel in London.
Richard joined the Rocco Forte family in 2016 as General Manager of The Balmoral and brings over three decades of experience in hospitality management across a variety of five-star properties in Canada, USA, South East Asia and China. He has been pivotal in the success of The Balmoral Hotel in recent years. 2022 was a particularly memorable year for Richard as the hotel achieved ‘AA Hotel of the Year for Scotland’ and celebrated a milestone anniversary of 120 years. In addition, under Richard’s leadership, the hotel has continued to retain its position as the only hotel in Scotland to receive the world-renowned accolade of Forbes Five Stars for the third year running.
Richard previously worked as Area General Manager of the Shangri-La Hotels in Toronto and Vancouver, having opened the Shangri-La Toronto. Prior to this, he spent ten years in various management positions with Shangri-La Hotels including General Manager of Traders Hotel in Kuala Lumpur, Hotel Manager of the Shangri-La Hotel in Singapore and Hotel Manager of Pudong Shangri-La Hotel in Shanghai, and three years in Hong Kong as corporate Food and Beverage.
Richard started his hospitality career in the UK before moving to New Zealand and the Regent Hotel in Auckland. He subsequently moved to the U.S where he held the position of Executive Assistant Manager at The Ritz Carlton in Dearborn, Michigan and The Ritz Carlton in San Francisco before moving to Rosewood Hotels and Resorts in Dallas as Director of Food and Beverage.
“Richard Cooke is one of our most experienced senior managers. He was instrumental in the success of the Balmoral and I am delighted he will now be overseeing both our UK properties,” said Sir Rocco Forte, Founder and Chairman of Rocco Forte Hotels.
On his new appointment, Richard Cooke commented: “I am pleased to be appointed Cluster Managing Director for Rocco Forte Hotels’ UK properties. We celebrated two extraordinary milestones for each of the hotels last year: 185 years of Brown’s Hotel and 120 years of The Balmoral, so I am honoured to have the opportunity to now lead two of the world’s greatest hotels through the next chapters of their already rich history and ensure that their legacy continues.”