Home' Hotel Management : HM APRIL 2015 Contents STARWOOD’S
Starwood Hotels and Resorts’ Frits van Paasschen has
resigned by mutual agreement with the Board of Directors
as President, Chief Executive Officer and a Director.
Adam Aron, a Starwood Director since 2006, has been
named Chief Executive Officer on an interim basis while
the Board conducts a search for a permanent CEO that
will include both internal and external candidates.
“I’m proud of Starwood’s accomplishments and the
growth we’ve seen around the world and across all nine of
our brands,” van Paasschen said.
“ We have challenged ourselves to deliver on bold plans
while continuously finding new ways to provide better
experiences for our guests, and it’s clear from our progress
that Starwood is now in a strong position for the future.
“Creating this powerful global platform would not
have been possible without the talented team of
associates I have been honored to work with, and I am
confident that Starwood will enjoy continued success for
many years to come.”
Starwood has announced van Paasschen will continue
with Starwood as a consultant to assist in the transition.
“Frits has made many important contributions over the
past seven years to Starwood’s successful evolution into a
global company with leading lifestyle brands that possess
distinct competitive advantages,” said Bruce W. Duncan,
Chairman of the Board.
Aron has been a director of Starwood since 2006,
serving at various times on the Audit Committee, Capital
Committee, Corporate Governance and Nominating
Committee, and Compensation and Option Committee,
which he chaired.
Amalgamated Holdings Limited’s (AHL)
hip regional and city fringe brand Atura
has made its debut in Albury on the site of
the former Rydges Hotel on Dean Street.
The mid-market Atura brand, which
carries the same DNA as big sister
QT Hotels and Resorts, adds some
flavour to Albury through exposed high
ceilings, an American-inspired bar and
restaurant, lobby with a snooker table,
a pool with new decking, a quirky grab
and go at reception and rooms with
The 140-room property, originally
opened as a Travelodge in 1973 by then
Prime Minister Gough Whitlam, is also
a local star for events and the refurbished
meeting spaces are already a hit with
bookings for local conferences, meetings
Speaking exclusively to HM at the
launch of Atura Albury on January 30,
Atura Hotels and Resorts’ Director of
Operations and Development, Geoffrey
York, said having this calibre of property
was a “game changer for the region” and
the new-look hotel was “already proving
popular for locals and visitors like”.
The opening of Atura Albury was
officiated by Albury Mayor Kevin Mack,
who praised AHL for investing in the city
and bringing the former Rydges hotel up
to a world-class standard.
He said the debut of Atura Albury
“couldn’t come at a better time”, with
the city significantly investing in new
infrastructure including the Albury Art
Gallery, which is undergoing a AUD$10.5
million renovation and is set to be the
largest art exhibition space in New South
Wales outside Sydney.
The Gallery, set to re-open in mid-
2015 is expected to have some of the most
renowned permanent collections and
travelling shows ever seen in an Australian
regional town, according to Mack.
The hotel’s makeover was undertaken
by leading designer Nick Graham, who
was given a brief to create “urban, high-
energy and art-inspired public spaces”
by AHL and the Group’s Managing
Director, David Seargeant, said that ’s
exactly what ’s been achieved.
“Atura Hotels brings a fresh approach
to the Australian accommodation industry
and is definitely something new for
regional NSW,” he said.
“ The Atura brand is part of a growing
global trend towards design-driven hotels
offering guests a unique experience –
Atura does this with even more value.
“ We’ve been delighted at the response
to the properties launched and indeed
the awards won by our flagship Atura
Blacktown property and look forward to
launching more Atura Hotel properties
throughout Australia over the coming
years,” he said.
Atura Albury is the third property
for the brand, alongside hotels in
Blacktown outside Sydney and
Dandenong near Melbourne.
AHL debuts the hip Atura Albury
Starwood’s Frits van Paasschen has resigned
The hip Atura Albury lobby
and exterior (above)
10 HM The Business of Accommodation
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