Grabush new COO for Schulte; more people on the move

Schulte Hospitality Group has named longtime hotel executive Sam Grabush to its COO position, while Playa and Sandpiper have made leadership changes.

Schulte Hospitality Group names new COO
Schulte Hospitality Group has appointed Sam Grabush as COO. He oversees operations for the company’s nearly 175 hotels across the U.S.

Most recently, he served as president of operations for Highgate Hotels, where he spent the last 14 years overseeing the company’s 118 “legacy” properties in the U.S. and CALA and led a team of more than 20 senior operations leaders. He also served as SVP, operations at Highgate, overseeing the company’s New York City portfolio of 40 hotels. Prior to joining Highgate, he spent nearly 14 years with Hilton, where he worked in various property-level leadership positions for several of Hilton’s marquis properties in both New York and Boston, including the original Waldorf-Astoria on Park Ave. and the 2,000-room Hilton New York on the Avenue of the Americas.

Playa Hotels & Resorts makes organizational changes
Playa Hotels & Resorts, a leading owner and operator of all-inclusive resorts in Mexico and throughout the Caribbean, has promoted Fernando Mulet to chief investment officer.

While maintaining his current property acquisition and project development duties, Mulet is expanding his role to lead The Playa Collection—Playa’s in-house membership program debuting later this month. He also oversees the company’s growing third-party resort management operations and serves as the central point of contact for a growing network of third-party owners that rely on Playa’s management. Additionally, he will assume asset management duties, which include oversight of capital investment and project management.

Additional staff changes include the departure of Kevin Froemming, former chief commercial officer/EVP. As part of this transition, Dean Sullivan has been promoted to SVP and leads Playa’s sales and marketing efforts.

Danny Rose has been elevated to SVP with an expanded role of ecommerce, marketing and advertising oversight.

Eeva Lindroos, who has been responsible for Playa’s strategy of driving the highest RevPAR within Playa’s competitive set, has been promoted to SVP, revenue management & distribution.

Sandpiper Hospitality promotes Cruz to VP, business development
Sandpiper Hospitality, a Virginia-based hotel management company, has promoted Victor Cruz to serve as VP, business development. In this role, he is responsible for developing third-party management opportunities and earning new management contracts for the company.

He joined the Sandpiper Hospitality team in 2016 and most recently served as the VP, revenue management. He previously held positions at Winegardner & Hammons Hotel Group, Shaner Hotels, Highgate Hotels, Interstate Hotels & Resorts, Sage Hospitality and The Prococcianti Group.