What has been learnt in last six months about operational efficiencies that can be carried forward for the future? How can we look at job roles and functions with a hotel differently when we think outside the box?
Donald Bremner Managing Director – Stirling Hospitality Advisors
Managing Director – Stirling Hospitality Advisors
Donald is the Managing Director of Stirling Hospitality Advisors with 20 years of experience in asset management, development and hospitality advisory services, primarily within the Middle East.
Donald has held multiple roles across the industry including Hotel Manager, Asset Manager, Director of Development and Director of Rooms for Jumeirah Group and Operations Analyst, Revenue Manager, Director of Rooms and Director of Food and Beverage for InterContinental Hotels and Resorts.
Donald is the Industry Chair for the Hotel Asset Management Association and has a BSc from Aberdeen University.
In conversation with
Hassan Ahdab President of Hotels Operations – Dur Hospitality
President of Hotels Operations – Dur Hospitality
Hassan Ahdab is the President of Hotels Operations for Dur Hospitality, a leading Saudi grown hospitality company in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. At present, he oversees operations, aligns the company’s overall vision to the growth of the Hotel’s portfolio across the Kingdom and manages 9 operating hotels and 5 hotels currently under development.
Beginning his career in 1979, Hassan Ahdab now possesses over 30 years of rich experience in hospitality and has thereby been recognized as a stalwart and one of the most progressive and energetic leaders in the industry.
Prior to his current role, Hassan Ahdab held several significant positions in the finance and operations sectors including CEO at Retaj Hospitality Group – Doha, Vice President and Regional Director for Africa & Indian Ocean Operations for Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Managing Director on assignment in Seychelles, General Manager for Le Meridien Libreville - Gabon, Complex Manager of Le Méridien l’Habitation and Le Domaine de Longvilliers - Saint Martin, as well as Area General Manager of Le Méridien Hotels in the Caribbean & French West Indies.
Complimenting his multi-faceted skills of hotel operations and management, Hassan Ahdab holds a Bachelor Degree in Economics, Commerce & Accounts Management from Damascus University, and also received the CEHMI (Geneva) honorary title – Executive Doctor for International Relations.
He also holds the 21st rank in the Hotelier Middle East Power 50 List 2019, and has been a continued participant and speaker at renowned industry events such as the Saudi Arabia Hospitality Investment Conference (SHIC) and the Arabian Hotel Investment Conference (AHIC).
Additionally, Dur’s Hotel Operations arm has earned a range of accolades over the years from awarding bodies such as World Travel Awards, Haute Grandeur and HORECA, for its properties operating under its subsidiary brand Makarem Hotels, and those operating under partnership with Marriott International and Intercontinental Hotel Group.
Giuliano Gasparini Senior Vice President – Asset Management, Hospitality & Leisure – Aldar Properties PSJC
Senior Vice President – Asset Management, Hospitality & Leisure – Aldar Properties PSJC
Giuliano Gasparini is Senior Vice-President at Aldar Properties PSJC being directly involved in the asset management of the entire hotel and leisure portfolio of the firm. Prior to that he covered several executive positions in hospitality-specialized consulting firms having been Head of Consulting at PKF in Dubai, Senior Vice-President of JLL Hotels in Madrid and Senior Associate at HVS in Madrid amongst others. Giuliano Gasparini is one of the Chairmans of HAMA MEA (Hotel Asset Management Association) and a full-time professor at both Paris Sorbonne Abu Dhabi, the Dubai Real Estate Institute (DREI) and IE Business School in Madrid. He holds affiliation at the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (FRICS), Counsellor of Real Estate (CRE) and Institute of Hospitality (FIH).
Giuliano has spoken at many regional and local conference on hotel investment and asset management topics and published articles both on line and on Hotelier Middle East regarding hospitality markets in Europe and Middle East as well as Asset Management best practices.
Giuliano graduated in Economics at Bocconi University in Italy and hold two master degrees in Urban Economics and in Tourism Economics by Erasmus University Rotterdam in the Nederland’s and Bocconi University in Italy respectively; as well as a post-graduate certificate on Hotel Asset Management from Cornell University (USA).
Zoltan Kali Senior Vice President – Omran Hospitality
Senior Vice President – Omran Hospitality
Zoltan is an experienced real estate investment professional with over 20 years of industry experience covering multiple managerial and leadership positions across geographies.
With a primary background in hotel investments and asset management, Zoltan has extensive experience with a range of real estate asset classes like office, residential and mixed-use.
He began his career in philanthropic organisations, then continued with KPMG, where he worked for a decade in the Hospitality, Leisure and Tourism team for the Europe, Middle East and Africa.
Previous to joining Omran, where he heads up the asset management and hospitality functions, Zoltan worked at the sovereign wealth fund of Oman (SGRF) where he was responsible for the direct hospitality portfolio and real estate funds.
Zoltan, an engineer by trade, studied social sciences and acquired an MBA from the Weatherhead School of Management, Cleveland, Ohio, specializing in Finance. He is a certified asset manager from Cornell University School of Hotel Administration.
Clive Smith Managing Director - Hotels Division – Al Hokair Group
Managing Director - Hotels Division – Al Hokair Group
Clive is currently Managing Director – Hotels Division, Al Hokair Group. He was previously Director of Operations for Coral Sea Hotels in Papua New Guinea. He has held General Management positions with IHG, Millennium Hotels, Divan Hotels, Autograph Collection by Marriott and Absheron Hotel Group.
Whilst with Absheron Hotel Group he opened four hotels in Azerbaijan and previously one in Iraq for the Divan Group. Clive has over 30 years’ experience within the hospitality industry starting his career in the UK after finishing his Hotel Management studies. He then spent most of his career overseas within the Middle East and Africa, initially as hotel manager at the InterContinental Jeddah.