FRHI Hotels & Resorts, the leading luxury hotel management company that operates Raffles Hotels & Resorts, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts and Swissôtel Hotels & Resorts, is pleased to announce several management-level appointments at its properties and locations in Asia Pacific recently.
Pieter Van Der Hoeven has been promoted to general manager of Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor and Raffles Hotel Le Royal in Cambodia. He has more than 25 years of experience in the industry, spanning brands such as Grand Hyatt, Anantara, The Peninsula and Six Senses. Van Der Hoeven sees his position of general manager as constantly innovating and creating experiences for guests that suit their personal journeys.
Within China, Philip Smith moves to Fairmont Chengdu as general manager. A hospitality professional with over 30 years of experience with Fairmont, he was previously the general manager of Fairmont Yangcheng Lake. In his new role, he will be in charge of opening the flagship hotel and luxury residences in 2015, bringing Fairmont’s renowned engaging hospitality and luxury service to one of China’s fastest growing cities. Smith believes that great hospitality not only comes from the heart, but is about having an outstanding team that shares a passion for excellence and has the desire to make each guest experience unique and special.
Jeff Cheng replaces Philip Smith as general manager of Fairmont Yangcheng Lake. Cheng started his career in food and beverage, moving from chef at properties like The Ritz-Carlton and Star City Casino Sydney, to director of food & beverage with the InterContinental Hotel Group. He was most recently the hotel manager of Fairmont Nanjing. To keep fit, he engages in a variety of sports including badminton, jogging, squash, golf and diving.
In the same city, Jesper Vilsoe has been promoted to general manager of Swissôtel Kunshan. Previously the executive assistant manager of the property, he will now be responsible for the overall operations, performance and strategic direction of the hotel. Vilsoe embarked on his food & beverage career after graduation in 1995, where he has held progressive positions in locations such as Romania, Vietnam, London, Jakarta, Warsaw and Kuwait. His philosophy in life is to live like there is no tomorrow and to give 100 percent of himself every single day to guests, staff and owners.
Graham Hewitt, with more than 25 years of hospitality experience, joins Fairmont Nanjing as general manager. Hewitt started his career as director of finance with the Sheraton Hotel group and most recently occupied the position of general manager at the Sheraton Nanjing Hotel & Tower. His vision is to make the Fairmont the leading hotel in Nanjing.
Outside of urban China, in the Hawaii of the East, Raffles Hainan welcomes Ugur Talayhan as general manager. A 14-year career with Starwood Hotels & Resorts saw him work in cities including London, Algarve and Dubai. He most recently held the position of general manager at the Westin Xi’an. To start the day, Talayhan visits the heart of house to trade funny stories with his team and set the scene for a positive work environment.
Over in Southeast Asia, Jeff Ross has been promoted to general manager of Swissôtel Resort Phuket. Ross joined Swissôtel the Stamford – a part of the Raffles City complex in Singapore – in 2010 as director of operations, and was later named hotel manager. Prior to joining Swissôtel, he was with Starwood Hotels & Resorts where he held progressive positions from food and beverage manager to hotel manager. In his downtime, he trains in martial arts to sharpen his mind and develop discipline.
Also moving on from the Raffles City complex is Carlos Monterde. Formerly the hotel manager at Fairmont Singapore, he is now the general manager of Fairmont Jakarta. Monterde will be responsible for providing leadership at the hotel, scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2015. Outside of work, he devotes his time to training for triathlons and has participated in the Full Ironman Western Australia.
Replacing Carlos Monterde at Fairmont Singapore is Scott Murray, who has been named hotel manager. He brings with him over 20 years of experience working with hospitality groups including InterContinental and Banyan Tree. Recent roles include hotel manager for One&Only Royal Mirage and general manager for Hayman Island. He looks forward to solidifying the property’s niche in the thriving hospitality landscape, following its multi-million dollar renovation project.