Hyatt restructures Americas organization

Hyatt announced a subregional structure designed to further support Hyatt’s focus on growth, operational excellence and performance optimization within its largest region. Hyatt’s Americas region is now comprised of two subregions: U.S. & Canada and Latin America & the Caribbean (LAC), led by two newly appointed subregional presidents, respectively: Susan Santiago and Gabriel Felip. Both report to Pete Sears, group president, Americas, effective January 2024.

In her new role as president, U.S. & Canada, Santiago is responsible for the growth and performance optimization of Hyatt’s owned and managed portfolio. She is in her 32nd year with Hyatt and has held numerous positions leading operational performance, most recently as SVP of Hyatt’s Lifestyle Division and Miraval brand.

Gabriel Felip, Latin America & the Caribbean for Hyatt Hotels Corp.
Gabriel Felip (Hyatt Hotels Corp.)

As president, Latin America & Caribbean, Felip leads operational performance for all managed and owned Hyatt hotels in the region across all brands, including Hyatt’s Inclusive Collection. Felip is an industry veteran with more than 30 years of hospitality and tourism experience and previously served as Hyatt’s group president of Inclusive Collection Global Operations.

“Our new Americas structure enables us to further support our hotel teams and owners in more customized, regionalized ways—and this is designed to help us continue driving strong results through intentional and sustainable growth for the region,” Sears said in a statement. “With these changes, we continue our momentum in positioning Hyatt as the preferred hospitality brand, delivering meaningful and memorable experiences for guests and driving results for our owners.”

Included in the Americas’ new subregional structure are three newly created roles within the operations, commercial services and finance functions, respectively: Yvette Martinez-Edwards has been promoted to SVP, field operations, luxury & Miraval, reporting to Santiago; Shyla Gardner re-joins Hyatt as VP, commercial services, Latin America & the Caribbean, reporting to Asad Ahmed, SVP, commercial services, Americas; and Juan Pablo Puerta now serves as SVP, finance, Latin America & the Caribbean, reporting to Liz Bauer, SVP, finance, Americas.

Martinez-Edwards oversees Hyatt’s managed luxury and Miraval hotel portfolio for the Americas region. Most recently, Martinez-Edwards served as VP of field operations where she led a group of full-service Timeless Collection properties in the East region. She also previously led Hyatt’s sales strategy in Latin America & the Caribbean and for the Miraval brand.

Gardner leads a cross-functional LAC commercial services team that provides a specialized commercial strategy for the LAC market and further develops strong brand stories for Hyatt’s full LAC portfolio, including the Inclusive Collection. Prior to this role, Gardner acted as VP of sales & marketing for Playa Resorts and previously served as an area director of sales and marketing in Mexico for Hyatt.

Puerta is responsible for leading the finance function and driving property performance optimization throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Puerta also continues to lead the function for Hyatt’s Inclusive Collection in the region. Prior to this role, Puerta served as the CFO of Apple Leisure Group.