Washington, D.C. – May 30, 2019 – The Willard InterContinental Hotel announced today that Ernie Arias will be the historic hotel's new Director of Sales and Marketing. Having begun his career with The InterContinental Hotels Group in 1998 as the Director of Sales and Marketing of The Crowne Plaza Houston-Brookhollow, Arias returns to IHG with more than 20 years of related global hospitality experience. In his new role, Arias will oversee the sales, marketing and public relations strategies to help increase the hotel’s luxury brand positioning, amplify international sales and grow the domestic and foreign business.

"Ernie's wealth of expertise in the luxury hotel market combined with his passion for the business will complement our ongoing efforts to create an unforgettable luxury experience at this legendary hotel," said Markus Platzer, General Manager of The Willard InterContinental Hotel. "I am quite pleased to welcome Ernie to The Willard."

“The Willard InterContinental has always been recognized as one of D.C.'s most storied landmarks and desired luxury hotels," Arias said. "It is invigorating to be back in the District working for this iconic hotel, ideally situated in the heart of the city."

Formerly, Arias also served as Director of Sales and Marketing for the Crowne Plaza Houston-Galleria as well as Director of Sales for the InterContinental Houston. In 2005, he joined the Hyatt Corporation at the Park Hyatt Chicago as Director of Sales and Marketing, where he developed luxury brand partnerships and managed sales, public relations and marketing efforts for the property, as well as for its food and beverage outlets including NoMI restaurant. Shortly after, Arias was promoted to Area Director of Sales and Marketing with a focus on multinational business before moving over to the Park Hyatt Washington in 2009 and ultimately the Park Hyatt New York in 2013, holding the same position. Most recently, Arias acted as Senior Vice President of Sales and Business Development for The Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C.

In addition to earning a Hotel/Motel Executive Certificate from the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel & Restaurant Management at the University of Houston, Arias received the Memorial Erickson Scholarship in the School of Arts & Sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder.

For more information or to book accommodations at the Willard InterContinental, visit www.washington.intercontinental.com for specific details or call (800) 424-6835.