Hotels hire new GMs in February

A number of hotels across North America have named new general managers since the beginning of the month. Here are a few notable new appointments.


The Ambassador Chicago, a JDV by Hyatt Hotel, has named Keith Cestare as its new GM. Cestare started as a bellman followed by a stint as a front-desk agent and houseman at his first hotel. Before joining Ambassador Chicago, Cestare worked for several hotel properties across the country, including Boca Raton Resort and Club, LondonHouse Chicago and The Porter Portland, Curio Collection by Hilton.  

Also in Chicago, The Gwen, a Luxury Collection Hotel, has named Katharine Degoma GM. Degoma has more than 20 years of leadership expertise in hotel operations management and sales leadership. She has also overseen a number of hotel openings, renovations and brand conversions, most recently creating and executing a plan to convert independent Ambassador Chicago hotel to a lifestyle-boutique hotel as a JdV by Hyatt brand within the Hyatt portfolio.

Washington, D.C.

Sergio Perez has joined the Kimpton George Hotel in Washington, D.C., as GM following roles as the front-office manager and assistant GM at the Kimpton Hotel Monaco in the same city. He most recently held the role of task force general manager at the Kimpton George Hotel.

Perez has spent 20 years working at hotels in Virginia, Chicago, Baltimore and Washington, D.C. Before joining Kimpton in 2018, he was director of front-office operations for the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C. Before that, Perez spent years with Hyatt, including holding the role of director of housekeeping at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill. He also has background in international openings and renovations for the Hyatt Zilara and Hyatt Ziva.

Also in the nation's capital, Nicolas Dubort has been appointed GM of the Mandarin Oriental, Washington D.C. Over the past 25 years, Dubort has worked for the Hotel Bel-Air and The Beverly Hills Hotel in Los Angeles, The Dorchester in London, The Peninsula Chicago, Le Bristol in Paris and the Four Seasons Philadelphia. He was also director of F&B at Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong, overseeing the operations of 10 outlets. He then returned to the United States as director of F&B for Mandarin Oriental, New York before being promoted to hotel manager in Washington, D.C.

New York City

Bastian Germer will be general manager of the upcoming Ritz-Carlton New York, NoMad.
Bastian Germer
​​​​​ (Ritz-Carlton New York, NoMad)

Bastian Germer will be GM of the upcoming The Ritz-Carlton New York, NoMad. Germer has 27 years of experience in hospitality, having started his career in his hometown of Hamburg, Germany. He has worked with Four Seasons, Raffles and The Ritz-Carlton brands in Los Angeles; the Maldives; Singapore; London; Osaka, Japan; Toronto and New York City. Germer was most recently the general manager of the New York Edition.  

Also in New York, Mark Pandaleon will be GM of the new Smyth Tribeca, which is managed by Highgate. Pandaleon has more than 15 years of New York City hotel management experience and joins the Smyth Tribeca team from Highgate-managed Stewart Hotel, where he started as director of housekeeping and worked his way up to GM. Before that, Pandaleon was assistant director of food-and-beverage at The London Hotel New York, director of stewarding at The Drake Hotel in Chicago and spent seven years at The Waldorf Astoria in various operational leadership roles within the rooms and F&B divisions.


Keith Siebenaler is the new GM for the Kimpton Hotel Born Denver, the anchor hotel for Denver’s Union Station neighborhood. Siebenaler comes to Hotel Born from The Kimpton Schofield Hotel in Cleveland, where he was general manager for four years. Before that, he was assistant GM at The Kimpton Gray Hotel in Chicago, where he helped to facilitate the property’s opening. Siebenaler has has also been director of operations at Hyatt Centric the Loop in Chicago; task force general manager and assistant general manager for Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants in Baltimore and San Francisco; director of front-office operations at Fairmont Washington D.C. Georgetown; front-office manager and guest-services manager at Fairmont Orchid in Hawaii; and assistant director of housekeeping, guest-services manager and assistant front-office manager at Fairmont Millennium Park in Chicago. 

Puerto Rico

Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Dorado, Puerto Rico, has tapped Ana Henriques as GM. Henriques has more than 10 years of professional experience in Ritz-Carlton Reserve hotels. She began her hospitality career in 1991 in her home country of Portugal, working in cost control and F&B. She then transitioned to sales and marketing, eventually moving into the director role. In 2005, Henriques joined Ritz-Carlton Hotels as director of sales and marketing of Penha Longa Hotel. In her six years at the hotel, she worked as hotel manager and ultimately GM.

Following this role, Henriques relocated to Asia Pacific in 2011, taking on the role of GM of Phulay Bay, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve, in Thailand. Three years later, she was named preopening GM of Mandapa, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Bali.

Greenville, S.C.

Hay Creek Hotels has appointed Albert Mertz as GM of the upcoming Hotel Hartness in Greenville, S.C. In his new role, Mertz will open and operate the 73-room Hotel Hartness, the fine-dining restaurant Patterson and the property’s full-service spa. Mertz’s 30 years of international hospitality experience includes positions with brands including The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Co. and Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, where he provided strategic planning, financial management and operational support. He has also held leadership positions at Aman Resorts, Loews Hotels and Fisher Island Club.

St. Louis

21c Museum Hotels has appointed JP Roberts GM of the 21c St. Louis, which is scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2023 in the city’s downtown YMCA building. Roberts has worked for both independent hotels and luxury properties within the Dream Hotel Group and Marriott International’s Autograph Collection. Recent positions include general manager of the Dream Nashville property and opening general manager for Hotel Vandivort in Springfield, Mo. 

Scottsdale, Az.

Ralph Scatena is coming back to the JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa as GM and area GM for Phoenix. He is the first returning GM in the 85-year history of the resort. As a 40-year Marriott International veteran, Scatena has held a range of positions across numerous brand portfolios and markets. He was GM of several Marriott properties, including Orlando World Center Marriott in Florida and JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa in Palm Desert, Calif. Scatena has filled a number of above-property leadership positions with Marriott , including regional VP of sales and marketing and regional director of revenue management.

New Orleans

HRI Lodging has appointed Michael Klein  general manager at The Eliza Jane, part of the Unbound Collection by Hyatt. Most recently, Klein was director of operations at the Holston House Nashville, another HRI Lodging property. Before his role at Holston House, Klein was the opening director of F&B at the JW Marriott Nashville, and has held additional leadership roles in Austin, Texas and San Antonio.

Blaine, Wash.

Columbia Hospitality has appointed Matt Skaletsky as GM of the Semiahmoo Resort. Most recently, Skaletsky was GM at Hotel Windrow, a Columbia Hospitality-managed hotel in Ellensburg, Wash. He began his career in Charleston, S.C., where he was ultimately named sous chef at the Boathouse restaurant and the Carolina Restaurant. He then moved on to positions in hotels in the Caribbean; Washington, D.C.; San Diego; Aspen, Colo., and other locations before landing at Maui’s 1,000-room Ka’anapali Ocean Resort Villas as the director of F&B. Skaletsky joined Columbia Hospitality in 2019 as GM at The Finch, a boutique hotel in Walla Walla, Wash.

The Villages, Fla.

McKibbon Hospitality has appointed James House GM of the Home2 Suites by Hilton Wildwood-The Villages. Upon completion, House will be responsible for overseeing all operations of the 96-room hotel, which is slated to open this spring. During his 10-year career with McKibbon Hospitality, House has held a variety of operational leadership roles across several le brands, most recently serving as assistant GM of the dual-branded AC Hotel and Residence Inn Charlotte (N.C.) City Center. Before his stint in Charlotte, House oversaw day-to-day operations of the Residence Inn Tallahassee North/I-10 Capital Circle as GM.

House joined McKibbon in 2013 as operations manager of Aloft Tallahassee (Fla.) Downtown, making the transition from White Lodging, where he served as operations supervisor and then operations manager for two of the company's Tampa, Fla., properties over a five-year period. From 2016-2018, he held the role of assistant GM of McKibbon’s Hampton Inn & Suites Tampa Airport Avion Park Westshore.

Miami Beach, Fla.

Gabriel Perez is a new GM for The Indigo Road Hospitality Group’s Lodging & Lifestyle Adventures division, and will oversee The Alexander All Suite Oceanfront Resort in Miami Beach, Fla. Perez has been the GM at several properties under IHG Hotels & Resorts, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, Hyatt Hotels and Extended Stay America flags. He also served in leadership roles for Highgate, Real Hospitality Group and TPG Hotels & Resorts. 

Anna Maria Island, Fla.

The Compass by Margaritaville, Anna Maria Sound, has named Beth Muzik GM of the 123-room property. Muzik has held leadership roles in F&B and property operations for more than 25 years. Most recently, she converted the Flamingo Hotel in Costa Rica and the Tan Tar A Resort in the Lake of the Ozarks to Margaritaville properties. Before that, Muzik joined Driftwood Hospitality Management in 2012 as corporate director of F&B and was a GM with Aramark Corp. in the sports and entertainment division. Muzik began her career working in a variety of roles at branded hotels with Hilton, Interstate Hotels, Fortune Hotels, Coral Hospitality and GF Management around the country.