Welcome Aboard: New Hires and Promotions for August 14, 2015
Belmond Names Philippe Cassis As Chief Operating Officer
Belmond Ltd. has announced the appointment of Philippe Cassis as executive vice president, chief operating officer. Cassis most recently served as chief executive officer at Sun Resorts Ltd., where he oversaw the successful growth of the company’s portfolio of luxury destination resorts.
Prior to his role at Sun Resorts Ltd., Cassis spent 28 years with Starwood Hotels & Resorts, where he held various executive positions including senior vice president, operations South America and global initiatives Latin America, a position in which he managed a portfolio of 37 properties across Columbia, Peru, Chile, Argentina and Brazil. Prior to that role, as senior vice president, regional director Spain and Portugal, Cassis oversaw and helped grow an important region with 16 properties, including six openings and six hotels under development. As senior vice president, regional director Middle East and Africa, Cassis oversaw 52 hotels in 26 countries.
Tracy Marks Appointed General Manager Washington Hilton
Tracy Marks has been appointed general manager of the 1,070-room landmark Washington Hilton. Marks will assume his new post effective immediately; at the very hotel where he began his hospitality career as beverage manager in 1982.
Marks brings more than 30 years of leadership experience in hotel management with a primary focus on food and beverage, and is familiar with the DC area where his career was launched. After a year as beverage director at Washington Hilton, he moved to Capital Hilton as assistant food and beverage director before his elevation to food and beverage director at Hilton Greenbelt in Maryland and then at Hilton McLean, Washington Hilton and Hilton San Francisco. In 2003, he became hotel manager of Hilton Portland & Executive Tower and in 2006 was promoted to general manager.
Corinthia Hotels Appoints Mifsud General Manager Of Corinthia Hotel Budapest, Fischer General Manager of Corinthia Hotel London
Corinthia Hotels has appointed Jean Pierre Mifsud as general manager of its iconic Grande Dame hotel in Budapest. Moving from his position as general manager of the Marina Hotel in Malta, and bringing over 20 years’ experience across the tourism and hospitality industry, Mifsud will oversee Corinthia Budapest as it continues to thrive among the city’s leading hotels.
Maltese-born Mifsud launched his career at Corinthia Hotel St George’s Bay in the mid-1990’s, and has since held senior management positions at several of the Corinthia hotels in Lisbon and Malta. In 2007, he briefly ventured into the restaurant sector and operated a family-owned business, opening various well-known and popular restaurants on the Mediterranean island. He returned to Corinthia Hotels as director of operations at Corinthia Palace Hotel & Spa in 2010, followed by a move to Corinthia Hotel St. George’s Bay as hotel manager three years later. In 2013, he took on the first role as hotel manager of the Marina Hotel, of which he became general manager shortly afterwards.
Mifusd replaces Thomas M. Fischer who has been named the new general manager of Corinthia’s flagship five-star hotel in London. Moving from his position as General Manager at Corinthia Hotel Budapest, which he has held since March 2012, Fischer will oversee Corinthia Hotel London as it continues to thrive among the city’s leading five-star hotels.
Fischer, who has over 21 years’ experience in luxury hospitality, was recently awarded “Budapest’s Hotelier of the Year” for 2015 at the “Best of Budapest & Hungary” awards. Under his leadership, Corinthia Hotel Budapest gained new momentum and was awarded “Hungary’s Hotel of the Year 2014” by The Hungarian Hotel and Restaurant Association and the Hungarian Tourism Board.
During his two decades’ experience in luxury hospitality, Thomas has worked with leading brands, including Kempinski, Hyatt, and Hilton in Germany, London, China, and the Middle East. He was previously General Manager at Kempinski Hotels in Frankfurt, Moscow, and Halle-Leipzig.
Post Ranch Inn Welcomes Geanides as General Manager
Post Ranch Inn welcomes its new general manager, Kevin Geanides. With more than 18 years in hospitality at luxury properties, Geanides brings extensive experience in both hotel management and culinary services.
Geanides has spent close to two decades honing his skills and expertise in luxury-class hospitality and guest service with such properties as The Setai and the Turnberry Isle Resort & Club in Miami and the Hotel Plaza Athénée in New York City. Immediately before joining Post Ranch, he spent five years as the resort manager for Little Palm Island Resort & Spa in Little Torch Key, Florida.
Palace Resorts Announces New Operations Team Members at Beach Palace and Moon Palace Golf & Spa Resort
Palace Resorts is pleased to announce the promotion of two executives within the operations team in Mexico. Luis Ojeda has been promoted to operations director for Moon Palace Golf & Spa Resort, and Wilma Zahoul has been named operations manager of Beach Palace.
Ojeda has played an important role in many of the brands’ most noteworthy accomplishments including the grand openings of Sun Palace and Beach Palace. Under his supervision, Beach Palace ranked on both TripAdvisor’s Top Popularity Index and attained the coveted AAA Four Diamond Award for four consecutive years. A dedicated employee committed to excellence, Ojeda was recently featured in Cornell University’s School of Professional Development Program after taking a continuing education course.
Zahoul was previously a member of the Groups department, specializing in conventions and weddings at Playacar Palace, Moon Palace Golf & Spa Resort and most recently she served as Resident Manager at Le Blanc Spa Resort.
Loews Coronado Bay Resort Names Clancy Managing Director
Loews Hotels & Resorts announces the appointment of Sean Clancy as managing director of Loews Coronado Bay Resort. Clancy brings more than 22 years of hospitality-industry experience to his new role, having most recently served as managing director of Loews Philadelphia Hotel.
Clancy began his career with Loews Hotels & Resorts in 2012 as hotel manager for the Loews Miami Beach Hotel in Florida. Prior to Loews, he held senior level leadership positions with The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company and Waldorf Astoria Hotels and Resorts, including executive assignments at the Arizona Biltmore Resort and the Boca Raton Resort & Club.
Durham Convention & Visitors Bureau Sales Team Gets Seasoned Leader
April Ellerbe has been tapped as the new director of sales at the Durham Convention & Visitors Bureau (DCVB). Ellerbe brings with her more than 25 years of experience in destination sales, business development and hospitality, as well as previous DCVB experience. Throughout her career, Ellerbe has managed major programs in partnership with nationally recognized non-profit organizations, federal agencies, and foundations.
Before re- joining DCVB in 2015, Ellerbe ran New Century Planning, an event management company. She also previously served as the director of national accounts for Pinehurst Resort where she successfully developed new markets and broke records for revenue generation.
Chris Bailey Promoted to Chief Operating Officer for Centara Hotels & Resorts
Centara Hotels & Resorts, Thailand’s leading hotel group, has announced the promotion of Chris Bailey to chief operating officer from senior vice president of sales and marketing.
Since joining Centara Hotels & Resorts in 2004 as the vice president of sales and marketing, Bailey has played a significant role in the formulation of the effective growth strategy that has propelled the company to the pre-eminent position in the industry it enjoys today. With only eight properties in 2004, Bailey will help to oversee a current portfolio of 70 properties and still growing.
With a wealth of experience in travel and destination management, Bailey brings that knowledge and wider industry perspective to his new role. Bailey will oversee Centara operations, sales and marketing, and the organization’s various corporate entities, which are all vital components as the company continues to rapidly expand locally and internationally.
William Margaritis Joins Hilton Worldwide as Executive Vice President of Corporate Affairs
Hilton Worldwide has announced that William Margaritis will become the company’s executive vice president of corporate affairs starting in late August, based in the company’s global headquarters in McLean, VA. Margaritis previously served for 15 years as senior vice president of global communications and investor relations at FedEx Corporation.
Margaritis comes to Hilton with 33 years of experience, having managed various facets of corporate and marketing communications, government affairs, investor relations and employee communications. At FedEx, Margaritis led the strategic repositioning and rebranding communications programs for the company through an integrated customer and employee campaign. He was also the architect of the Purple Promise, an award-winning internal cultural employee engagement multimedia initiative to create a common rallying platform for 300,000 team members across multiple operating companies around the world. Margaritis implemented innovative strategic reputation programs that helped FedEx consistently earn top-tier rank in Fortune’s Most Admired Companies and Great Places to Work lists.
Carnival Corporation Names Michael Ungerer to New Chief Operations Officer Role for Asia
Carnival Corporation & plc has announced that Michael Ungerer, currently president of Germany-based AIDA Cruises, has been appointed chief operations officer-shared services for Carnival Asia. Ungerer will relocate to Shanghai, China, and directly support each of the Carnival Corporation brands operating in the region to leverage the company's industry-leading presence and scale in the region.
In addition, longtime AIDA senior executive Felix Eichhorn has been named president of AIDA Cruises. He will also report to Thamm.
Ungerer joined AIDA Cruises in 1997 and has been president of AIDA Cruises since July 2012. From July 2004 to June 2012, he served as AIDA Cruises' senior vice president-operations, responsible for marine operations, new ship builds, guest services, shoreside operations, entertainment and purchasing. He played an important role in the company's product development, as well as further developing AIDA Cruises' high standards of quality for providing a world-class guest experience.
Eichhorn started his career at AIDA Cruises while studying business administration. In the following years, he worked in a variety of increasingly responsible positions ashore and onboard before taking on the role of senior vice president of sales, yield management and flight operations. He assumed responsibility for the sales and revenue management of AIDA Cruises and Costa Germany in 2013.
Joseph M. Demille Sr. Named Director Of Sales And Marketing At Turnberry Isle Miami
Turnberry Isle Miami is pleased to announce the appointment of Joseph M. DeMille Sr. as director of sales and marketing. DeMille is a respected industry professional who will bring his exceptional leadership skills and established sales and marketing expertise to assist the resort in achieving its long-term goals. With more than 30 years of experience in the hospitality industry, including comprehensive capabilities directing sales and business development, DeMille will work with the property team to create synergies and continue delivering unparalleled service at the resort.
DeMille began his career with Hyatt Hotels & Resorts, where he held roles at 11 Hyatt properties over 18 years. Following his tenure at Hyatt, DeMille pursued a position with industry leader Ritz-Carlton in their Resort Division. After successfully completing the Malcolm Baldrige recertification with The Ritz-Carlton Amelia Island, he embarked on a 10-year career with Starwood Hotels and Resorts overseeing global sales development. DeMille joined Dolce Hotels & Resorts in 2010 as senior director of business development until January 2013 when he assumed the role of regional director of sales and marketing for Dolce Atlanta-Peachtree. His proven success in identifying and capturing market opportunities through top-producing marketing campaigns earned him multiple awards including “Director of Sales of the Year” and “Sales Production Leadership Award.”
Bermuda Tourism Authority Selects Cailor Director of Public Relations and Content Development
Tiffani Cailor, a 26–year hospitality integrated communications specialist, joins Bermuda Tourism Authority (BTA) as director of public relations and content development after 18 years with Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. In her new role, she leads global media relations and content for the BTA in the New York office.
Recently, Cailor was head of public relations at Four Seasons Hotel New York, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts’ flagship hotel of North America. As a lifestyle consumer expert, she built the hotel’s social media platforms and repositioned the hotel’s food and beverage program. In addition, her significant contact base of international and national media and influencers allowed her to position the Ty Warner Penthouse as one of the world’s leading luxury suites. During her tenure at Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts she developed media relations strategies for both city hotels and resorts (including Costa Rica), directed all marketing communications and philanthropy efforts as well as managed all crisis communications.
Maltais Joins Fathom as East Coast Senior Sales Leader
Fathom has named Jason Maltais as the company’s East Coast senior sales lead. In this role, Maltais will be responsible for marketing and business development supporting sales of Carnival Corporation’s Fathom brand that is pioneering the new category of social impact travel. Maltais joined the company in July reporting to David Drier, vice president, sales for Fathom.
Maltais joins the Fathom team from Norwegian Cruise Line, where he was program manager responsible for building programs that maximized revenue from online travel agencies and provided strategic and tactical direction aligned with corporate and departmental goals. Additionally, Maltais served as account executive for Royal Caribbean Cruises, where he was responsible for creating and executing marketing initiatives and projects while managing the marketing and incentive budgets. Prior to that, he served as the BDS for Royal Caribbean International where he partnered with assigned BDM’s and travel partners to create and exceed sales goals.
Stanton South Beach Appoints Manzari as General Manager
Stanton South Beach is pleased to announce the recent appointment of Mike Manzari as its new general manager.
With more than 26 years of sales, marketing, and hospitality experience, and a long-standing history working with the Marriott brand, Manzari brings his creativity, innovative thinking, and customer-focused dedication to his new role at the boutique beachfront hotel.
Most recently, Manzari was general manager for Florida Group Sales representing more than 56 Marriott hotels across the Sunshine State. Prior to that, Manzari served as the dual general manager for the Westin & Le Meridien in Philadelphia and as the general manager for the Marriott at Centerpoint in Pontiac, Michigan.
Manzari’s background is rounded out by four director of sales & marketing positions with other Marriott, Ritz Carlton, and Doubletree properties in San Francisco, Santa Barbara, and Marina del Rey, so he’s eager to put his dynamic range of skills to work with the goal of enhancing Stanton’s unique guest experience.
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