Hilton has appointed Noha Abdalla as vice president of social media marketing. In this newly created role, Abdalla will lead the global, enterprise-wide strategy for content, campaigns, and community development. She most recently served as vice president, digital brand strategy, and social media at Capital One.
Here are more of this week’s notable hospitality comings and goings:
Graham Perry has been appointed managing director of Best Western Hotels & Resorts, Australasia, following Best Western International taking management control from the Motel Federation of Australia. He will work to boost the level of services Best Western provides properties such as increasing revenue management capabilities and growing Best Western Rewards. Perry was most recently CEO of Inland NSW.
SalesBoost, a web-based sales training tool for hospitality, has promoted Andrea Christopherson to the company’s chief innovation and engagement officer. She will develop and design the company’s sales training and coaching technology solution along with the continuous new course curriculum. Christopherson most recently managed sales training, a sales recognition program, and corporate sales and marketing initiatives for Omni Hotels & Resorts.
The Plasencia Group, a lodging investment advisory firm, has announced two promotions: Robert E. Wiemer, Jr., based in the firm’s Houston, Texas, office, has been named senior managing director responsible for the company’s Southwest region. Since joining the firm in 1994, he has managed the successful execution of over 100 transactions on behalf of The Plasencia Group’s clients. Additionally, John S. Plasencia, based in Charlotte, N.C., has been named a vice president with the firm. He joined the firm in 2014 as senior financial analyst, and will now be focusing on transaction advisory services for the firm’s clients.
Cetin Sekercioglu has co-founded online upselling platform Upgrading.cc and taken on the role as its chief executive officer. With three decades of experience in the hospitality industry, including as EVP of Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts and Asia Pacific president of Millennium Hotels & Resorts, Sekercioglu will spearhead the platform’s development, oversee the management of partners and consumers, as well as market expansion.
Hotel management software company Quore has hired Richard Bradbury as vice president of strategy and alliances. In this role, Bradbury will develop and guide Quore’s long-term growth strategies. Bradbury brings nearly 30 years of experience in hospitality product management and business development. He most recently served as director of product management for InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG).
Hotel management company HP Hotels has hired Tyler Atchison to serve in the position of regional director of revenue management. In this role, Atchison will be responsible for creating and implementing strategies and analyzing business segments, searching for innovative ways to increase revenue. For almost 10 years, Tyler has worked for several major brands including IHG, Marriott, and Hilton.
Hospitality solutions platform FCS Computer Systems (FCS) has welcomed Allan Galatolo to the team to head up sales for the Americas. Galatolo is now responsible for enhancing FCS’ business development and customer service, with a focus on increasing market share in the region. Prior to joining FCS, Allan worked for leading hospitality brands including Hyatt, Marriott, and Hilton, most recently as opening general manager of a new Hilton property in Washington, D.C.
Laurens Zieren has been appointed general manager of The Diplomat Beach Resort Hollywood, Curio Collection by Hilton in Hollywood, Fla. A veteran Hilton leader for almost 20 years, Zieren returns to Hilton after a regional vice president role for a hotel management company. In his new role, he will oversee operations of the 1,000-room oceanfront hotel.
Four Seasons Hotel Chicago has named Jan Valasek as its new hotel manager. Valasek most recently was director of food and beverage at Four Seasons in Anguilla. He started his career with Four Seasons as a houseman in 2001 in Prague, his birthplace. Since then, he has worked for seven Four Seasons hotels and resorts in six countries.
Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort has appointed industry veteran Kathryn Day as the property’s new general manager. In this role, Day will leverage her expertise in customer service and internal operations to lead the path for success at the 374-room full-service residential resort. Prior to joining Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort, Day served as general manager of The Drake Chicago.
Halcyon has appointed of Kim Corrigan as general manager of the 154-room hotel in Cherry Creek, a Denver neighborhood. With over three decades of management experience in the hospitality industry, Corrigan will be responsible for the overall operations, performance, and strategic direction of the hotel while bringing authenticity, exclusivity, and individuality to the guest experience.
Roedel Companies has named Danielle Ducharme as general manager of the new Homewood Suites by Hilton in Berlin, Mass. Ducharme will oversee all aspects of the 105-room hotel, including the maximization of financial performance, guest satisfaction, and staff hiring, training, and development. She most recently served as GM of the Candlewood Suites in Burlington, Mass.
Le Pavillon Hotel added Parker Sams as general manager. Drawing on more than a decade of hospitality experience, Sams will direct all operations of the historic, remodeled 226-room hotel, elevating service standards and enhancing the guest experience. Sams most recently served as general manager for Crescent Hotels & Resorts within a few of their properties, including The Adolphus in Dallas, Texas.
The Woodlands Resort, located 30 miles north of Downtown Houston, appointed Ryan Adams as general manager. Drawing on nearly two decades of experience in luxury hospitality, Adams will oversee all day-to-day operations of The Woodlands Resort, including accommodations, food and beverage outlets, guest services, and recreational programs. He previously held the position of resort manager at Chatham Bars Inn Resort and Spa in Chatham, Mass.
James Sheets has joined The Standard, Downtown LA as director of sales. Sheets has two decades of experience in the hospitality business. Most recently, he was consulting for Hammer Ventures, a San Diego-based real estate developer that was converting historic office buildings into exclusive luxury residences in La Jolla.
Salamander Hotels & Resorts has appointed Darin Riggio as director of sales and marketing at Reunion Resort in Central Florida. Riggio will oversee sales and marketing strategies, including driving business, revenue, and overall brand awareness to the resort. Riggio joins Reunion Resort from Hyatt Regency Coral Gables, where he was director of sales and marketing.
Benchmark has made several announcements. The company named Alesha Newman director of sales for Forest Suites Resort at Heavenly Village in South Lake Tahoe, Calif. Previously, Newman supported Forest Suites Resort’s food and beverage, sales, and conference services departments and has also served in the property’s revenue management, banquet, and restaurant operations, as well as wedding & special events services. Benchmark also named Lloyd Van Horn general manager of Topnotch Resort, a Gemstone Collection property located in Stowe, Vermont. Van Horn served as the resort’s manager from 2006 to 2009 and has more than 25 years of experience in hotel management. The company also named Robin Hess controller of Marenas Beach Resort, a Gemstone Collection property located in Sunny Isles Beach, Fla., just north of Miami. Hess previously held the position of controller for Sole On The Ocean Resort. Benchmark also appointed Jon Conching director of sales and marketing for Turtle Bay Resort on Oahu’s North Shore in Hawaii. Conching previously held the position of director of sales and marketing for the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort & Spa.
Terranea Resort has announced four executive promotions. Mark Adams has been promoted to senior director of sales from director of sales. Adams has led the strategic direction for his team of sales managers and administrative assistants in developing and implementing experiences for Terranea’s meeting planner clients for more than five years. Mark Kaussner was promoted to senior director of catering, conference, and destination services at Terranea Resort. With 30 years experience in the hospitality industry, he previously led the catering and conference services teams. Maynor Alberto rises to the role of director of IT from IT manager. Alberto joined Terranea in 2013, and has since elevated the organization’s technology platform, improving systems, and supporting associates and their IT needs. Robert Boyd has been named director of rooms for Terranea Resort. Boyd joined Terranea in a consulting role after a devastating hurricane closed the El San Juan Hotel in Puerto Rico, at which he served as rooms division director.