Expotel Hospitality names new COO

Expotel Hospitality, a full-service third-party hotel management company, has promoted Bret Chittenden, formerly the firm’s EVP, operations, to become its new COO.

In this role, he leads the company’s owned and managed portfolio, establishing policies that promote the company’s culture and vision, as well as, overseeing operations of the company. He is also responsible for managing and assisting development of the firm’s executive leadership team; working closely with the Expotel development and real estate investment committee; and serving as Expotel Hospitality’s liaison to brand partners and industry groups.

Chittenden has more than 26 years of experience in the hospitality industry, including serving currently on the board of directors of the Greater New Orleans Hotel & Lodging Association, the board of directors of the Jefferson Parish Convention & Visitors Bureau and the IHG Owners Association Operations Committee for North America. He currently serves as chairman of the board of the Louisiana Hotel & Lodging Association.

He has been with Burrus Investment Group (1996-1999) and Expotel (1999-present) since its inception. He has been part of the core team and was instrumental in building an initial portfolio of eight owned properties managed, which subsequently grew to include more than 20 third-party-managed hotels in 10 states.

“I’m honored to take on this role in support of Expotel Hotels, partners, team and the owners that we represent,” Chittenden said. “We are currently operating in challenging times in the hospitality industry. Our core principles must remain the same throughout, clean and comfortable rooms, operating mechanicals, outstanding customer service and valuing our team members.”

George Newton, chairman, Expotel Hospitality, said, “Bret has consistently demonstrated excellence in positioning hotels and efficient operations, team building and understanding the brand’s needs and contributions to hotels. He has grown tremendously in his time with us and has been instrumental in our success and has effectively been the head of operations for some time, now he has the appropriate title.”