NEW YORK—Starwood Capital Group, a global private investment firm focused on real estate and energy, has promoted Arash Azarbarzin to CEO of its subsidiary company, SH Hotels & Resorts, effective immediately. Azarbarzin succeeds Starwood Capital chairman/CEO Barry Sternlicht, who will remain chairman and continue to be involved with the organization .
Azarbarzin has more than 30 years of industry experience, including leadership roles at St. Regis Hotels, W Hotels and Four Seasons Hotels, and as a founding member at Sbe hotel group, among others. As president of SH Hotels & Resorts, his strategic vision, leadership abilities and operational expertise continuously fueled the growth and performance of the SH portfolio, including 1 Hotels, Baccarat Hotels and Treehouse Hotels brands. Together with Sternlicht, Azarbarzin has displayed outstanding performance and leadership throughout one of the most challenging times for the company as well as the industry, according to the company. In 2020, he joined the board of directors of the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) and the Amaala development advisory board.
“I am delighted to promote Arash to the role of CEO of SH Hotels & Resorts to help lead the growth of the company and its brands across the world,” said Sternlicht. “Over the last year, the industry has experienced tremendous upheaval and Arash has shown steady leadership and helped position us for a bright future. I am confident that under his leadership, we will continue to see significant increases in guest satisfaction, build excellence in SH Hotels & Resorts, as well as true advocacy for our overall mission of sustainability in everything we do.”
In Azarbarzin’s three years as president of SH Hotels & Resorts, he spearheaded the successful openings of 1 Hotel West Hollywood and 1 Hotel Haitang Bay in China, and launched the Treehouse Hotels brand. Staying true to the company’s core values, he has made tremendous headway in reducing overall climate impact for the entire organization, including the establishment of real-time energy monitoring, decrease in resource use, and certification as a Carbon Neutral Organization—all while continuing to give back to local and global communities in alignment with the brand’s collective mission of commitment to sustainable practices and to offsetting our carbon footprint, the company reports. With a robust pipeline ahead, Azarbarzin is poised to lead the company to new heights with international expansion in cities like Paris, London, Copenhagen, Toronto and Manchester, U.K., as well as domestic expansion in San Francisco, Miami, Nashville,TN, and Kauai, HI.