There have been a number of big changes for executive appointments in the travel industry this week, including the retirement of some key industry figures.
This week Apple Leisure Group and The Mark Travel Corporation announced that Alex Zozaya would lead the newly combined company as CEO. Following the joining forces of the two major travel companies, Bill La Macchia and Bill La Macchia, Jr. will serve on the combined company’s Board of Directors.
In tour operator news this week, Harry Dalgaard, founder, president and CEO of FIT provider Avanti Destinations, announced that he will retire effective June 30. Industry veteran Paul Barry, founder of Europe Express, is now sole owner and executive chairman, supported by the executive team of COO Mark Grundy, CMO John Hanratty and CFO Susan Marra.
Cruise event pioneer Josephine Kling also announced she would step down this week as president of Landry & Kling Global Cruise Events, effective April 27. Kling co-founded the company, which pioneered hosting events on cruise ships, 35 years ago with Joyce Landry, who will assume the expanded role of president and CEO.
In other tour operator news, this week Pleasant Holidays and its luxury brand, Journese, announced the appointment of three new business development managers to their sales teams. Karen Paul, based in Philadelphia, will focus on the Mid-Atlantic region, while CJ Rogers, based in Los Angeles, will cover southern Nevada, Los Angeles and Ventura and Santa Barbara counties in southern California. Based in Dallas, Karen Seiler will handle Texas, Arkansas and Oklahoma.
In resort news, Club Med named Josie Bielmeier as the new director of sales strategy for the East region of the United States this week. In her role Bielmeier, who has been with the company for 20 years, oversees the creation and execution of the company’s sales strategy, and will manage the field sales teams in the U.S. market.
In other hotel news, G6 Hospitality LLC, the parent company of the Motel 6 and Studio 6 brands in the U.S. and Canada, announced that company President and CEO Jim Amorosia is retiring after 33 years with the company. Rob Palleschi, currently G6’s chief development officer, has been appointed to the position of interim president and CEO, effective immediately.
Also this week Hard Rock International promoted Todd Hricko to senior vice president and head of global hotel development. Hricko, who has more than 20 years of property development experience, will now oversee the development of hotels for the entire brand, working directly under Hard Rock International’s Chief Operating Officer Jon Lucas.
Hotels worldwide also made a number of appointments to their leadership teams this week:
- The newly renovated Grand Summit Hotel, A RockResort in Park City, UT, welcomed Chuck Randles as senior director of lodging operations for Park City and general manager of the hotel.
- The Courtyard Marriott Long Beach Airport in California named Troy Karnoff its new director of sales and marketing.
- Bürgenstock Hotels & Resort Lake Lucerne made a number of changes this week. Two new executives have joined: Bettina Haeberle as area director of sales and marketing and Jonas Reif as communications manager, while two long-serving staff members have been promoted. Martina Kessler moves up to director of marketing, and Lauriane Zosso has been promoted to communication specialist, international markets.
- The Shelbourne Hotel Dublin appointed JP Kavanagh as general manager.
Finally, in cruise news this week, Seabourn announced the expedition team for this summer’s season in Alaska and British Columbia. They are expedition leaders Juan Carlos Restrepo and Chris Srigley; assistant expedition leader Nicki D’Souza; assistant expedition leaders and lecturers Natasha Hanson and Adam Jenkins; lecturers Meredith Bass, Jennifer Fought, Lisa Baldwin, Will Wagstaff, Brent Houston and Joe Cockram; and Zodiac operators and naturalists Captain Al Barnard, Bill Fletcher and Ross Ellingwood.