People on the move

Management companies are making new hires, including Sage Hospitality Group bringing back a former executive.

Robert Butler returns to Sage Hospitality Group
Sage Hotel Management, a Sage Hospitality Group company, has revealed that Robert Butler will return to the company on Sept. 12 as EVP, directly overseeing The Upscale and Premier Collections. He left Sage in 2018 after a 14-year tenure in various operational leadership positions, culminating in his role as SVP, operations.

In his new role, Butler will have total oversight of Sage’s Upscale and Premier Collections, which encompass more than 40 soft-branded, branded full-service and branded upscale hotels in 14 states. In addition to directly working with a portfolio of properties, he will direct a team including Brad Robinette, SVP, special projects; Steve Santomo, VP, the Premier Collection; and Maryam Seifi, VP, the Upscale Collection.

“We are beyond thrilled to welcome Robert back to the Sage family,” said Daniel del Olmo, president/COO, Sage Hotel Management. “Robert is a proven senior executive with an impressive track record of delivering results by nurturing relationships with all stakeholders, making him a perfect fit for this newly created role in our organization. As we prepare for accelerated growth and progress on our journey to become the nation’s undisputable lifestyle hospitality company, I am very grateful to have a leader like Robert on our team.”

Butler’s career in hospitality spans more than 30 years. He returns to Sage after spending nearly four years at Crescent Hotels as EVP, operations, during which time he oversaw a portfolio of more than 100 hotels and grew revenue by nearly $200 million in his first year.

“A big piece of my heart has always remained with Sage, and I am happy to be coming back to work with a team of incredibly talented hospitality professionals,” he said. “I look forward to bringing the insights and perspective I have gained in my time away back to Sage. The portfolio has evolved in such a remarkable way, with a noticeable focus on lifestyle and luxury, and I’m looking forward to exceeding expectations for our owners and partners for years to come.”

Twenty Four Seven Hotels appoints Dennis Eichen
Twenty Four Seven Hotels, a third-party hospitality management company for premium-branded, select-service and lifestyle hotel segments in the western U.S., has appointed Dennis Eichen VP, finance and accounting.

In his new position, he oversees the company’s financial and accounting teams, financial systems and banking relationships/financing opportunities, while providing asset management expertise and strategic direction with the executive team to ensure short- and long-term profitability.

“Dennis’ vast experience and background position him as a leader who can make an immediate impact on the financial performance of our hotel portfolio,” said David Wani, CEO, Twenty Four Seven Hotels. “His aggressive approach to utilizing industry leading systems, software and tools for more efficient and effective processing of information will elevate our hotel’s performance.”

With more than two decades of hospitality accounting experience, Eichen most recently acted as corporate controller for The Ruth Group, where he was responsible for all aspects of the accounting and financial analysis function for all properties and ownership groups, including acquisition accounting for new properties. He also has served as senior director of resorts accounting & analysis with Irvine Company and held numerous property-level positions, including director of finance for Marriott’s Newport Coast Villas and multi-site director of finance for Marriott’s Shadow Ridge Resort and Marriott Desert Springs Villas.

“Dennis’ combination of corporate- and property level hospitality finance experience provide the ideal background for this position,” said Drew Hardy, president, Twenty Four Seven Hotels. “As we continue to expand our portfolio, it becomes increasingly important to build an executive team to facilitate that growth. Dennis’ hands-on approach to developing a cooperative, interactive environment will increase retention while also creating opportunities for growth and development within the finance team.”

Ensemble Hospitality makes three new hires
Ensemble Hospitality has appointed Samuel Grant as corporate hotel finance director, Pam Ryan as corporate director, hotel operations and Silvia Villegas as employee experience manager.

Based in Long Beach, CA, Ensemble Hospitality, Ensemble Real Estate Investment’s hotel management division, currently manages eight hotels in California and Arizona with another four in development. Ensemble owns an additional five third-party managed hotels. The new team members have been hired in the management division to strengthen its corporate infrastructure as the company continues its growth.

Grant oversees the finance and accounting functions for the company’s hotel portfolio and ensures accounting practices are compliant, efficient and up to standard operating procedures. He also provides reports for ownership groups and consolidates all financial reporting for the portfolio.

A seasoned hotel finance professional for more than 30 years, he has held finance positions across the nation including high-end resorts, convention center hotels and publicly owned entities. Prior to joining Ensemble, he was VP, finance and accounting for a hotel management company based out of Newport Beach, Calif., overseeing 25 hotels in California, Arizona, Nevada and Utah.

In her role with Ensemble, Ryan works directly with the hotel’s operational teams in the disciplines of the rooms division including housekeeping, front desk, food and beverage, and engineering for the company’s managed hotel portfolio. She also leads the operational hotel teams in improving financial performance and guest stay satisfaction.

Prior to joining Ensemble, Ryan was with Marriott for more than 30 years in a variety of roles including GM at properties from select-service to full-service luxury.

Villegas assists with all human resource-related functions for Ensemble’s managed hotel portfolio and corporate office including maintaining all human resources-related databases, support efforts for talent management, identifies and creates partnerships with new employee resources, creates and streamlines company recognition and rewards programs, creates employee and corporate communication channels, engages employees in community activities to increase stewardship efforts, analyzes training needs to design employee development programs, administers and analyzes employee opinion survey program and serves on Ensemble’s corporate wellness committee.

Most recently, she was human resources manager at Millennium Biltmore Los Angeles. Previously, she was human resources manager at Anaheim Marriott Suites and also worked at Montage International Corporate and Montage Beverly Hills. Villegas began her career at Montage Laguna Beach as a human resources recruitment coordinator.

“Ensemble Hospitality is fortunate to have acquired the talent of these three outstanding individuals that all excel in their respective specialties within the hospitality industry,” said Kristi Allen, SVP, hotels, Ensemble. “With their addition, we are poised for continued growth across the hospitality sector throughout the nation. Our hospitality portfolio reaches across many top-tier brands that will benefit from our management expertise.”