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People & Places Presented By Association News (April 2017)
Los Angeles, CA – April 2017 / Newsmaker Alert / Each monthly issue of Association News contains information from state and regional associations, convention bureaus, hotels and hotel chains and other meeting facilities.

People & Places Presented By Association News (April 2017)David Clark has been named president and CEO of Visit Mobile (Alabama). Clark brings to his new role 29 years of industry experience, previously serving as general manager of The Beach Club in Gulf Shores, Alabama. Before that, he worked with Marriott International for 25 years.

Michael Larragueta has been named vice-president of sales at the Reno-Sparks (Nevada) Convention & Visitors Authority. Larragueta most recently served as executive director of sales at the Silver Legacy, Eldorado and Circus Circus properties in Reno.

Connie Kopecky has been appointed sales account executive at Visit Milwaukee. Kopecky has more than 20 years of experience at GMR Marketing, where she most recently served as director of travel, corporate events, meetings and hospitality.

The Greater Birmingham (Alabama) Convention & Visitors Bureau has promoted Steve Pierson to director of convention sales and has hired Carman Atchison as sales manager for the Northeast territory and the arts and culture markets. Pierson previously served as the bureau’s national sales manager and, prior to that, was vice-president of sales for convention bureaus in Knoxville, Tennessee; Rochester, New York; and Houston. Atchison most recently served as sales manager for Westin and Sheraton properties in Birmingham.

Hosts & Suppliers

Blake Henry has been named general manager of both the Owensboro Convention Center and the Owensboro Sportscenter in Owensboro, Kentucky. Henry most recently served as director of operations at the Baton Rouge Convention Center in Louisiana.

Paul Cardona has been appointed general manager of Le Méridien/Chicago- Oakbrook Center in Oak Brook, Illinois. Cardona has more than 22 years of experience; he previously held executive positions with Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, the Park Hyatt/Chicago and the SLS/ South Beach in Miami Beach, Florida.

Mike Burton has been named general manager of the Westin/Jackson, which is scheduled to open in August in Jackson, Mississippi with 203 guest rooms and 10 meeting spaces. Burton most recently served as general manager of the Westin/Chicago Northwest in Itasca, Illinois.

Marco Tabet has been named general manager of the Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort in Mexico, where he served as director of food and beverage from 2007 to 2012. More recently, Tabet was general manager of the Hilton/Lima-Miraflores in Peru.

Robert Purdy has been appointed general manager of the Hyatt Regency Lake Tahoe Resort, Spa & Casino in Incline Village, Nevada. Purdy most recently served as general manager of the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort & Spa in Colorado.

Nail Task has been named general manager of the Big Cypress Lodge in Memphis, Tennessee. He previously was assistant general manager of the Titanic Deluxe Bodrum hotel in Turkey.

Noni Hughes has been appointed general manager of the Kimpton Hotel Vintage in Portland, Oregon. Hughes previously served as assistant general manager for six years at the Skamania Lodge in Stevenson, Washington.

Vincent Bucci has been named managing director of the Hilton Marco Island Beach Resort & Spa in Florida, which recently completed a $40 million transformation. Bucci most recently served as general manager of the Hyatt Regency/ Westlake in Westlake Village, California.

Jeff David has been named managing director of the Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C. David previously served as managing partner of the Greydon House in Nantucket, Massachusetts.

David Arraya has been named resort manager of the Four Seasons Resort/ Lanai in Hawaii. He previously held a number of senior management positions at resorts across the United States and Asia, including the East/Miami and East/Hong Kong hotels, the Fontainebleau/ Miami Beach and the Pierre in New York City.

The 128-room Park Hyatt/St. Kitts, scheduled to open late this spring on the Caribbean island with 7,000-square-feet of event space, has hired Julian Moore as general manager and Mark Guthrie as director of sales and marketing. Moore most recently served as general manager of the Park Hyatt/Hadahaa in the Maldives. Guthrie comes to the property with experience as director of sales, marketing and events at the Park Hyatt/ Washington, D.C.

The Omni Hotel at The Battery Atlanta, scheduled to open early 2018 with 264 guest rooms and more than 12,000-square-feet of meeting space, has named Ramon Reyes as general manager and Jennifer Mayo as director of sales and marketing. Reyes previously served as director of rooms and operations for the Omni Royal Orleans in New Orleans. And for the last 12 years, Mayo was the director of sales and marketing at the Omni/Charlottesville in Virginia.

The Arizona Biltmore in Phoenix has named Ryan Fitzgerald as resort manager and Carey Shindler as senior sales manager. Fitzgerald most recently served as hotel manager of the Loews/ Philadelphia. Shindler comes to the Arizona Biltmore from the Arizona Grand Resort & Spa in Phoenix where she served as national sales manager for more than three years.

The Statler Hotel in Dallas, which is undergoing a $225 million redevelopment expected to be complete this spring, has appointed Evan Danziger as general manager and Jennifer Wasserman as director of sales and marketing. Danziger previously served as general manager of the Embassy Suites/Denver International Airport and as assistant general manager of the Embassy Suites/Phoenix-Scottsdale. Wasserman has more than 20 years of hospitality experience and most recently served as director of sales and marketing at the Highland Dallas.

Brad Lyles has been named director of sales and marketing at two properties in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin: the Grand Geneva Resort & Spa and the Timber Ridge Lodge & Waterpark. He most recently served as corporate director of sales at Marcus Hotels & Resorts in Milwaukee.

Paul Romero has been named director of sales and marketing at the Kimpton Hotel Zamora in St. Pete Beach, Florida. He most recently was a senior sales executive at the Hilton/St. Petersburg Bayfront, also located in Florida.

Alan Fabris has been named director of sales and marketing at the DoubleTree Resort by Hilton/Myrtle Beach Oceanfront in South Carolina. Fabris most recently served as area director of sales and marketing for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, overseeing 14 properties throughout the Midwest.

Katie Rooney has been appointed regional group sales manager at the Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa in Rancho Santa Fe, California. Rooney previously served as senior national sales manager for the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe, also located in town.

Construction & Expansion

The 241-room DoubleTree by Hilton/ Evansville has made its debut in downtown Evansville, Indiana. In addition to having its own 12,000-square-feet of meeting space, the hotel is connected via skybridge to the Old National Events Plaza and the Ford Center, which together offer another 600,000-square-feet of meeting space.

The dual-branded Aloft and Element / Dallas-Love Field has opened just south of Dallas Love Field Airport. The Aloft offers 133 guest rooms, a 24-hour fitness center, free Wi-Fi and a keyless entry system, and the Element offers 91 guest rooms, a complimentary “Bikes to Borrow” program and healthy dining options. The properties share 6,500-square-feet of meeting space.

The Westin/Dallas Park Central has completed a multimillion-dollar renovation. The update included upgrades to all 536 guest rooms, the lobby, restaurant and bar, fitness facilities, rooftop pool and 42,000-square-feet of meeting space.

The 470-room Washington Marriott Georgetown in Washington, D.C., has completed a $28 million renovation. The hotel updated its 18 meeting rooms and added three new rooms, bringing its total meeting space to 22,000-square-feet.

The Sheraton Miami Airport Hotel & Executive Meeting Center has completed a $10 million renovation, which included updates to its pool, 405 guest rooms and 17,000-square-feet of function space. It can host events of up to 300.

The Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa in Paradise Valley, Arizona, has unveiled $2 million in updates, marking the culmination of a two-year renovation project. The property offers 109 guest rooms and event space for up to 250 people.

And Finally…

The 1,360-room Marriott Marquis/ San Diego has partnered with local art dealer Alexander Salazar on a new art program for 2017. The hotel will feature work by artists that will rotate every six months. The new program complements the hotel’s recently installed artwork throughout its 280,000-square-feet of event space, which includes a $107 million convention venue that opened last summer.

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About Schneider Publishing
Schneider Publishing is the parent company of Association News, America’s most-read magazine for association executives, and SportsTravel, the sports world’s event magazine. In addition to Meetings Quest, Schneider Publishing organizes the TEAMS Conference & Expo, the world’s largest gathering of sports-event organizers. TEAMS ‘17 will be held October 30–November 2, 2017, in Orlando, Florida. TEAMS ‘18 will be held October 1–4, 2018, in Louisville, Kentucky. The group travel markets served by Schneider Publishing generate 156 million hotel room nights annually.

For press information, please contact Ann Shepphird, or call 310-577-3700.

Association News, Meetings Quest, SportsTravel and TEAMS are registered trademarks of Schneider Publishing.

Publishing Dates: 04/11/17 – 06/11/17
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