Category Archives: Movements

Rotana President and CEO shares message of hope for Ramadan

Guy Hutchinson, President and CEO of Rotana, has issued a statement outlining his hopes for the future of the hospitality industry in the wake of the current COVID-19 pandemic. Hutchinson praised the region’s governments, frontline healthcare professionals and other key workers for their decisive response to the global crisis, and urged the public to adhere to social distancing guidelines during the holy month of Ramadan. “Although we will miss our traditional gatherings, this is a sacrifice we must all be prepared to accept for the greater good. By uniting behind this shared sense of purpose, we are coming together as a community in new and profound ways,” commented Hutchinson. He went on to share details of Rotana’s efforts to support guests, staff and communities across the region, which include the adoption of stringent hygiene protocols and extending the use of Rotana properties to governments to assist in their efforts to combat the spread of the virus. The statement ended on an optimistic note, as Hutchinson shared his vision for the industry in a post-crisis landscape, “The hospitality sector will surely recover. Whether our new reality will be the same as before remains to be seen. Speaking as a passionate hotelier, I would like to think there will be some differences. I believe the dark hours we have faced will lead to a heightened appreciation for the joy of travel, making us realise just how privileged we are to serve our guests through this incredible industry. Together, we will reach those brighter days ahead.”

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GNTO appoints Yamina Sofo as its new director

The German National Tourist Office, Gulf countries (GNTO) has appointed Yamina Sofo as its new Director Sales & Marketing. In her new capacity, Yamina Sofo will provide leadership and strategic direction to the Gulf region team, manage a wide range of marketing campaigns and activities as well as work closely with the local and overseas trade partners and industry stakeholders to promote ‘Destination Germany’ as a year-round travel destination throughout the Gulf region. Speaking on her appointment, Sofo commented, “I’m proud to say that Gulf region is among the Top 20 of the most important source markets to Germany and the third largest source market outside Europe. Due to its diversity, Germany is one of the preferred travel destinations for the GCC nationals, whether for wellness and recreation, nature and sightseeing or simply for entertainment and shopping – offering high quality services, great value for money, luxury accommodation and facilities as well as environmentally-friendly transportation links throughout the entire country.” Commenting on the recent lockdown, Yamina said, “In spite of the lockdown, the German National Tourist Board (GNTB) has launched “#DiscoverGermanyFromHome”, a joined communication campaign on all social media channels worldwide to communicate inspiring, emphatic and informative content with tomorrow’s travellers in an engaging and interactive way.”

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Saleh Mohamed Al Geziry is the new GM of ATDD

Ferghal Purcell, COO, Hospitality Management Holding (HMH), welcomed Saleh Mohamed Al Geziry, the new General Manager of Ajman Tourism Development Department (ATDD), at Bahi Ajman Palace Hotel. During his visit,  Geziry met the various team members as well as saw the fabulous facilities at the hotel. Congratulating Saleh Al Geziry on his new role, Purcell said, “It is an enormous privilege to welcome Mr. Saleh Al Geziry at Bahi Ajman Palace Hotel. Over the years we have enjoyed working closely with Ajman Tourism Development Department and are eager to continue our collaboration. In keeping with the vision of the authorities, Mr. Saleh Al Geziry has got exciting plans for promoting Ajman that will further accelerate the demand for this superb destination.  We are thrilled to be part of it and delighted to extend our full support.”

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Sabre promotes Sean Menke to President and CEO

Sabre Corporation’s board of directors has appointed Sean Menke as President, CEO and a member of Sabre’s board, effective Dec 31, 2016. Menke will succeed Tom Klein, who has served as president, CEO and board member since 2013. “After an extensive search of qualified candidates, the board unanimously concluded that Sean is the right choice to lead Sabre. Since his arrival last year, Sean has demonstrated that his strong industry knowledge and expertise coupled with his decisive, results-oriented management style are an effective combination. These traits will help Sabre drive innovation as the travel industry’s technology leader and serve the needs of airlines, hotels, travel agents and travelers alike.  I look forward to working with Sean to make this happen,” said Larry Kellner, executive chairman of Sabre’s Board of Directors. Menke joined Sabre in October 2015 and currently serves as executive vice president of Sabre and president of Sabre Travel Network, Sabre’s largest line of business.  Under Menke’s leadership, Sabre Travel Network has won major new business opportunities, increased global market share and secured Sabre’s position as the leading global distribution system in three of its four major operating regions (North America, Latin America and Asia-Pacific), and successfully extended new multi-year agreements with many of its largest global travel management companies, online travel agencies and travel retailers.  In addition, he has led the innovation that enables the sale of more customized fares and ancillary products through Sabre Travel Network and strengthened the technology solutions that will be offered to travel agencies next year as part of the launch of the new Sabre Red platform.  Prior to Sabre, Menke served as CEO of Frontier Airlines and held senior executive positions at …

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Ramy Khairallah is new GM at Grand Excelsior Hotel Al Barsha

Ramy Khairallah has been appointed as the new General Manager of Grand Excelsior Hotel – Al Barsha. With his expertise in revenue management, sales and marketing, he is now entrusted by Bin Haider Hospitality division of Mohammed Omar Bin Haider Group to oversee the daily successful operation of this 230 rooms property as the leading hotel branch of its brand. His previous appointment includes Louvre Hotels Group and Starwood Hotels and Resorts-The Luxury Collections where he stemmed the passion in developing sustainable environment through sharing his ideas of green initiatives.

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Varghese is new Director of Sales at Millennium Airport Hotel Dubai

Binu S. Varghese joins Millennium Airport Hotel Dubai as the new Director of Sales to further develop their growing portfolio of international, regional and national accounts. Varghese served as Executive Assistant Manager of Operations at Wyndham Dubai Marina. His 19 years’ of experience includes seven years with the Wyndham Hotel Group. He has vast experience over the EMA region as well as pre-openings in Bahrain, Tanzania and Ethiopia for the Wyndham Group.

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Melia Doha gets new GM

Meliá Doha, the first five-star Spanish hotel in Qatar, has appointed Sherief Abouelmagd, an American Egyptian, as its new General Manager. After graduating in December 1988 with a Masters degree from Florida International University, US, in Hotel Management and Food Service, Abouelmagd started his 28 years’ career with Marriott Hotels International in the USA where he held several managerial positions including opening and managing as General Manager the North and South Carolina Courtyard by Marriott hotels.

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Corinthia Khartoum gets new DOSM

Mahmoud Tabbara has joined Corinthia Hotel Khartoum as Director of Sales and Marketing to lead their team in affirming the property’s position as a leading five-star luxury hotel in Khartoum. A Lebanese national, Tabbara has gained experience within the hospitality sector while holding several senior positions with international hotel chains around the world including, Rotana, IHG, Ritz Carlton and Warwick. Having previously worked in Lebanon, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait and Baghdad, he brings with him an extensive knowledge of sales and marketing in the Middle East.

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Olivier Chavy takes over as CEO at Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts

International Swiss hospitality company Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts (MH&R) has appointed Olivier Chavy, as new CEO. Chavy will take over the leadership from Jean-Gabriel Pérès in September 2016. Chavy is a veteran of the hospitality industry with a 28-year track record in hotel operations and brand management. He served as International Head, Global Brand Performance of Luxury & Lifestyle Brands for Hilton Worldwide. His experience in brand building and development in the hospitality industry has led him to his current role as President and Chief Executive Officer of Wilson Associates, the leading global interior architectural design firm. Chavy received his Master in Business Administration from Cornell University, a postgraduate diploma from ESSEC Business School and a BA in Hotel Management from Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines Hotel Management School in France.

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Mandarin Oriental, Bodrum appoints Guenter Gebhard

Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has announced the appointment of Guenter Gebhard as General Manager of Mandarin Oriental, Bodrum. Guenter Gebhard joined the Group in January 2016 from One & Only Hayman Island. Gebhard brings with him over 20 years of experience in the global luxury hospitality industry, with senior management roles at Mazagan Beach & Golf Resort in Morocco, Atlantis the Palm in Dubai, St. Regis, Bangkok and a global role as Director of Operations, Restaurants & Food and Beverage Operations at Jumeirah Group, together with other assignments in the Middle East, Germany and New York. A German national, he speaks a variety of European languages and has a good understanding of Arabic.

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