This Week’s Comings and Goings

Comings and Goings

Real estate investor and operator Waterton is welcoming Matt Mering as executive vice president, hospitality, and he will grow investment strategies, asset management, and investor relationships. Before Waterton, Mering was director of development for Graves Hospitality, where he managed acquisition opportunities and food and beverage operations. 

Armin Molavi is now vice president of global media strategy and execution for Hilton. In this newly-created position, Molavi’s goals are to transform Hilton’s media teams and partnerships to build out its media center. Before Hilton, Molavi served as North American head of strategy for Havas Media.

Wyndham Grand Hotels has promoted Marty Miles to complex general manager, and he is responsible for the brand’s three Galveston hotels: Hotel Galvez & Spa, The Tremont House, and Harbor House Hotel & Marina at Pier 21. Before his promotion, Miles was hotel manager and complex food and beverage director at The Tremont House since November 2009.

Vaughn Davis has been named general manager of Dream Hollywood. Davis will be leading operations and development, as well as growing six on-site food and beverage outlets. He also has experience with Dream Hotel Group, previously serving as director of guest services of Dream Downtown in New York City from 2013-2015.


The AC Hotel Los Angeles South Bay, which opens this summer, has named Ahmed Elassy general manager. Prior to joining the AC property, Elassy was director of operations for the Los Angeles Marriott Burbank Airport, where he led both the hotel and convention center since 2015.

Andy Welsh is now general manager for Provenance Hotels’ Hotel Lucia in Portland, Ore. In this position, Welsh will lead daily operations, revenue generation, and quality management. Last year, Welsh was responsible for launching Lora in Stillwater, Minn., and The Revolution Hotel in Boston, Mass., both Provenance hotels.

The Clift Royal Sonesta Hotel in San Francisco, Calif., has appointed Euan Taylor to general manager. Taylor comes to the property from New Zealand, having managed three Super Lodges in the country. In addition to his global experience, he also knows the California region, working at Hotel Vitale, Hotel Shattuck Plaza, and Cavallo Point. 

Pascal Forotti is managing director of The Watergate Hotel and will lead operations, strategic marketing, and brand development. Forotti has 26 years of global hospitality experience, working in countries including Costa Rica, England, and Canada.

BD Hotels has named Rani Gharbie head of acquisitions and development for The Pod Hotels, a micro-hotel concept by BD Hotels. Gharbie will put a new business model in place for potential new areas for the micro-hotel brand, like Miami, San Francisco, and Nashville. Before BD Hotels, Gharbie led development and acquisitions in North America for Virgin Hotels.

SaltRock Southwest Kitchen at the Amara Resort & Spa in Sedona, Ariz., welcomes Lindsey Dale to lead culinary operations as executive chef. Dale hopes to introduce local and sustainable ingredients to the restaurant’s menu, which currently features light and traditional ingredients from the southwestern United States.

Elizabeth Dinice is executive chef for The Lord Baltimore Hotel. Dinice will run all culinary outlets, including the property’s LB Bakery, LB Tavern, Skybar, banquets, and private functions. She will also ensure ingredients are supplied from the Chesapeake region, sourcing sustainable and season products.

Hotel San Luis Obispo is opening in June 2019 and named Ryan Fancher executive chef. Fancher will manage the property’s two restaurants: Piadina California and Italian cuisine, and Ox + Anchor steakhouse. Fancher most recently led the culinary team at Barndiva in Healdsburg and opened El Dorado Kitchen in Sonoma.

Ryan Wollman is joining the Los Angeles Airport Marriott executive team, serving as director of group sales. Wollman will maximize group revenue through guestroom sales, coordinating group sale activities, and assisting with the development of new sales and marketing strategies for the resort.

Benchmark has appointed Michael Botha to regional director of revenue management for the company. At the property level, Frank Casarez Jr. is general manager for The Nautical Beachfront Resort in Lake Havasu City, Ariz., and Angel Quiles is director of facilities for The Kartrite Resort & Indoor Waterpark in Monticello, N.Y., both Benchmark Resorts & Hotels properties.

Kelley Weidner is leading the hospitality division for Serta Simmons Bedding. Weidner is supervising the Serta and Beautyrest brands and overall operations. Weidner started at Serta in 2006 as a contract national account executive, and has taken new positions in leadership roles in the sales, support, and product development divisions.

James Colquhoun is vice president of finance and chief financial officer for RoomIt by CTWÒ, the hotel distribution division of CWT travel management platform. Colquhoun worked with Hyatt for over 10 years in business development, finance, operations and marketing, and partnerships.


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