Alumni Newsletter May 2014

Dear HVS Alumni,

Riding on the coattails of the successful 2013 US Hotel Marketing Connections, HVS will present Global Hotel Market Connections, scheduled for Wednesday, June 18, 2014. This series of hotel intelligence seminars, scheduled in 10 cities around the world, will deliver critical insights from a panel of local experts on issues facing the hospitality industry in that specific region. The common theme throughout all the sessions will focus on the topic of threat or opportunity of new supply in that particular market. Other discussion items include: trends in hotel lending and valuation; up-to-the-moment snapshots of hotel values, transactions, cap rates, and operating trends in each location; and a forecast of global hotel values through 2017 and beyond.

HVS Connections seminars will be held in Athens, Bangkok, Chicago, London, Miami, Mexico City, New York, San Francisco, Toronto and Vancouver. – Wednesday, June 18, 2014.

Specific topics in the respective Connections locations include:

  • Hotel Supply & Demand in the Chicago Market, and a Review of Proposed New Supply and Major Changes for the Future.
  • Value Trends & Investor Interest. What is Keeping NYC Afloat?
  • What’s the Upside From Here? Ownership and Operational Perspectives in the San Francisco Bay Area
  • What are Some Developer and Operator Perspectives of South Florida’s Hotel Market?
  • Focus on China: How does the Chinese Market Impact Hotel Investment and Performance in Vancouver?
  • What is the Supply Outlook for the Hospitality Market in Greece?
  • Effective Design Solutions and Innovations – Destination Thailand: Are we prepared for the next 25 million tourists?

Immediately following the event, every participant will receive a summary of the salient discussion points on all the participating markets. Everyone will be provided with a unique real-time snapshot of what is happening in the lodging markets throughout the world.

Registration fees and agendas vary by location. For more information about your specific market event, and to register, please visit  

Dorothy Jennings  

Kate Lutfy  

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Alumni Newsletter April 2014

Dear HVS Alumni,

Please join HVS Toronto May 5th, 2014 at the Park Hyatt Toronto’s roof salon for a cocktail party.

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Alumni Newsletter August 2013

Dear HVS Alumni,
Stay tuned, we are planning several exciting Alumni events in 2014! These include receptions in New York, Berlin, Toronto, Dubai, Singapore, and Houston.

  • On Jan 13, 2014, HVS New York is planning an alumni get together in the evening at STOUT. (133 West 33rd Street, New York, NY). The event is from 6 -8pm: light refreshments, wine, and beer will be served.
  • In Jan 2014, HVS Dubai is planning an alumni get together.
  • On March 5, 2014, HVS London is planning an alumni reception at the Berlin Conference. Please stay tuned for details.
  • HVS Toronto is planning a spring reception concurrent with the 2014 Canada Hotel Investment Conference; details to follow.
  • In April 2014, HVS India is planning an event during HICSA. Details to follow.
  • In April 2014, HVS Singapore is planning an alumni event concurrent with China Hotel Investment Conference (CHIC). Details to follow.
  • In August 2014, HVS Houston is planning an HVS Alumni Event. Details pending.

Our alumni news for the second quarter of 2013 include:

  • Several HVS alumnus participated in the US Hotel Market Connections events across the nation on May 1, 2014. Picture above from HVS Los Angeles, a new office launched in the past year.
  • Don’t be shy, share your most recent news with us and the HVS alumni network! Please email, and we pass along the good news!
  • Earn a referral fee from the Newport, RI Office; HVS Alumni can earn referral fees from HVS Hotel Management & HVS Asset Management! Details available on the website or for more details, contact Jeffrey Crowley at
  • Where in the world do HVS alumni go? Have you heard from Basil Chan, Jiahao Zhang, Elana Bader, Philip von Bodman, and Helene Ko ? We are seeking contact information and updates.
  • We invite you to view the recently updated HVS Alumni website and enjoy the latest personal and professional updates of your fellow alumni. These updates are showcased on our “Home” page and archived on our “Alumni News” page.

As we connect with HVS alumni living across the globe, we ask those who are in touch with fellow alumni to contact us and share updates. Our recently updated HVS Alumni directory allows for increased ease of use and promotes continued networking and social interaction amongst our alumni base.

We look forward to hearing from you and seeing you at one of our many events and conferences. In closing, we wish all HVS alumni and industry colleagues a bright and prosperous New Year.

All the Best,
Emily Sze
Consulting and Valuation, HVS San Francisco

On behalf of the HVS Marketing & Communications Team

Register with us at to download research publications and articles from the HVS Library. There is no charge to utilize the HVS Library.

Please follow HVS on Facebook, Twitter, Linked In and YouTube.

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HVS Alumni Update – San Francisco and Los Angeles

US Hotel Market Connections Event May 1 in San Francisco

From left to right: Panelist Moderator & HVS Senior Vice President Elaine Sahlins; Wells Fargo Securities Vice President Michael Harrison Brown; The Rim Corporation President & CEO Mark F. Burden; HFF Managing Director & HVS Alumnus Holden Lim; The Kor Group Principal Brian De Lowe. Photo by Kathryn Gritt.

US Hotel Market Connections Event in Los Angeles

From left to right: Wyndham Worldwide Vice President of Development & HVS Alumnus Brian K. Rodgers; Wells Fargo Vice President Stefani Turner; Ashford Hospitality Trust Vice President & HVS Alumnus Mitchell Roberts; RobertDouglas Principal & HVS Alumni Stephen E. O’Connor; HVS Senior Managing Director Suzanne R. Mellen. Photo by Shannon Okada.

Daniel Taccone, HVS Alumnus & current Marketing Manager at Expedia, also attended the Market Connections event in LA.

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Earn a referral fee from the Newport, RI Office...

HVS Alumni can earn referral fees from HVS Hotel Management & HVS Asset Management!

Referral fees for hotel management and asset management are potentially the largest referral fees available in HVS and alumni are eligible for this program too! For each month we have a contract that you’ve referred to us, we will send you a check for 5% of the base fee. On a $10,000 a month base fee that works out to $6,000 a year. There is no time limit or cap.

For all other assignments we pay 10% of the fee for the assignment excluding any incentive fees a contract might include, but are not limited to: Hotel Situation Analysis; Litigation Support / Expert Witness; Operations analysis and consulting; Brand or Management Company Searches and Contract Negotiations; and, any other type of work. Fees for these types of assignments generally range from $20,000 to $75,000 resulting in referral fees of $2,000 to $7,500 per referral.

Referral fees are paid as the retainer and fees are collected and sent to your home address. For more details contact Jeffrey Crowley at

We'd love to hear from you soon!

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HVS Alumni Reunion

On Monday, January 14th, the New York office hosted its first alumni reception at Stout’s Pub in New York City with over 50 attendees consisting of both alumni and current associates. Stephen Rushmore, Jr, HVS President & CEO. welcomed everyone and gave a short update on what is going on at HVS. In addition, he briefly discussed our new initiative where we will be hosting a concurrent conference across 15 different markets in the United States on May 1st. Branded as US Hotel Market Connections, all the different locations will be connected via webinar so attendees can efficiently capture both the local and national perspective.

Gisle Sarheim of Hilton Worldwide is married to a former HVS London associate, Lara Sarheim, and the Sarheim’s and their two children are thoroughly enjoying life in Singapore. He and Roland deMilleret swapped many interesting C&V anecdotes. Wendy Pong, who recently joined Denihan Hospitality, was delighted to greet her old friends. Wendy maintains a vacation home in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania which her children delight in visiting. World traveler, Anjali Mansukhani, will soon be traveling to India for a few weeks, hasn’t lost her enthusiastic sense of fun, and has had several humorous articles published on her life’s experiences. After traveling extensively through Israel and India, Shira Amrany has transitioned into the specialty cake decorating business.

Kate Henriksen of RLJ Lodging is enjoying Virginia farm life with her husband and two children. She feels it is worth the hour commute to the office to reap the benefits of the pastoral setting. Jasmine Chay stopped in to chat with her former colleagues, and was on her way to inspect some of Wyndham’s properties throughout the United States. In addition to a full-time schedule at GB Lodging, Dionis Rodriguez is quite active with extracurricular activities, including planning many Harvard Social events.

One of our first HVS associates, Dan Lesser, stopped by to reminisce and commented that he acquired a phenomenal education during his first year of employment listening to Steve Rushmore’s telephone conversations while sharing a small office. Gene Ference continues to globe trot while pursuing assignments for Ference Leadership & Strategy, and Bruce Ostroff of Hotel Dynamics is working with his father, Allen Ostroff. Sue Griffan is actively pursuing new hospitality ventures, and Ryan Meliker, formerly of the Boulder office, is Senior Analyst Equity Research of MLV & Co. in New York City. Ian Davis is pursuing his keen financial instincts at Lodging Capital Partners, LLC. Kelly Fitzpatrick is indulging her culinary passion, and is also asset managing a Florida property recently acquired by her family. She had such a great time at the New Orleans Roadfood Festival last year that she is hoping to include it on her itinerary once again in March 2013. Matt Melville is still involved in the consulting side of hotel appraising. Stephen Chan, a San Francisco alum, was happy to mingle with the crowd as was Pamela Mathiowetz and Larry Carrozzella. Teresa Lam still maintains her New York City address, and is working for Global Hospitality Cushman & Wakefield Capital focusing on debt, structured finance and markets equity.

Stout’s food offerings were sumptuous with cheeseburger sliders, superb chicken wings, crab meat cakes, spicy shrimp skewers, spring rolls, and guacamole to die for and everyone’s favorite – “pigs in a blanket”. Though the gala was slated from 6:00 to 8:00 pm, it was evident everyone was enjoying the evening since many did not depart until well after 9:15, and continued on to other venues. And many eagerly inquired as to the next HVS Alumni event – it was decided this will become an annual gathering.

Roland deMilleret and Gisle Sarheim

Stephen Rushmore, Jr. and Larry Carrozzella

Jasmine Chay, Kate Henriksen, Keith Kefgen and Bob Flapan

Dionis Rodriguez, Anjali Mansukhani and Wendy Pong

Chu Xu, Katharina Kuhnle, Cassaundra Brownell, Dorothy Jennings, Erin Kim and Shira Amrany

Gene Ference and Susan Griffan

Court Williams, Katharine Kuhnle, Parris Jordan, Nicole Roantree, and Lacey Hagen

Teresa Lee and Leora Lanz

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Alumni Events

The San Francisco office is in the process of planning an Alumni Reunion. Kindly prepare your calendars’ and wait for more details to come.

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U.S. Hotel Market Connections

Hundreds of hotel stakeholders. Fifteen markets. Three extraordinary hours. One memorable event. HVS invites hotel investors, owners, brokers, and experts to make connections and experience a revolutionary delivery of local and nationwide hotel market intelligence.

On Wednesday, May 1, 2013, HVS will host U.S. Hotel Market Connections, an interconnected hotel intelligence seminar series held simultaneously in 15 local markets from coast to coast. Through a network of telecommunications connecting each market, the local seminars will deliver critical insights from a panel of experts on issues regarding the hospitality industry in their respective locations; Issues include: trends in hotel lending and valuation; up-to-the-moment snapshots of hotel values, transactions, cap rates, and operating trends in each location; and a forecast of nationwide hotel values through 2016.

“We wanted to provide a unique information experience, unlike any other existing conference – a highly efficient way to present local market intelligence across the United States at the same time” comments HVS CEO and President Stephen Rushmore, Jr. “U.S. Hotel Market Connections will deliver insights about the present and future challenges and opportunities in each city while connecting delegates to other industry professionals throughout the country. Attendees will have an efficient means to network and learn over a period of three hours.”

Rushmore will present a simultaneous address to all 15 seminar sites to share results from the latest HVS-STR Hotel Valuation Index (to be released May 1), including national hotel trends, statistics, and analysis. Experts from HVS, in conjunction with panels of leading hotel stakeholders from each region, will draw on their own extensive, on-the-ground expertise to present insights and projections about trends, challenges and opportunities in their markets.

U.S. Hotel Market Connections offers a novel exchange of critical hotel intelligence, along with the opportunity to network with other national, regional, and local hotel analysts, consultants, investors, financiers, owners, and insiders. The event is designed to help hoteliers seeking funds for a new project, investors looking for viable opportunities in hotel markets across the U.S., and stakeholders eager for insights on the dynamics of the U.S. hotel industry in 2013 and beyond.

Registration is open now at Breakfast or lunch (according to local times) will be served at each location.

Contact Information

For more information on U.S. Hotel Market Connections, please contact Leora Lanz at or Jennifer Pope at

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Andrew Reed

Andrew Reed

HVS Office: Miami

Years with HVS: 3 years

Fun facts about yourself: I enjoy playing competitive volleyball, basketball, and going backcountry skiing with my dog, Lloyd.

Personal and/or Professional Update: Andrew has decided to join Destination Hotels & Resorts in Denver, Colorado after three wonderful years with HVS. Andy will assist in underwriting investment opportunities in key urban and resort markets across the United States, the Caribbean, and Mexico. Please join me in wishing him well in this new endeavor.

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HVS Events on the Horizon

3-4 April 2013
Grand Hyatt Mumbai, India

17-19 April 2013
Grand Hyatt Shanghai, China

US Hotel Market Connections 2013
1 May 2013

11-12 April 2013
Fairmont Grand Hotel Kyiv, Ukraine

7-8 May 2013
Ritz-Carlton Pacific Place, Jakarta, Indonesia

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Where will you be on January 14, 2013? Will you be in New York City? If so, then pay close attention and JOIN US...

HVS President and CEO Stephen Rushmore, JR. and the New York Office cordially invite you to our HVS ALUMNI REUNION Monday, January 14, 2013 for drinks and hors d’ouevres at The Greene Room at Stout - 133 West 33rd Street New York, NY (north side of 33rd between 6th and 7th; right by Madison Square Garden and Penn Station).

At The Greene Room at Stout 133
West 33rd Street
New York, NY
Phone +1 (212) 629-6191
Website: here

Be on the lookout for an E-VITE so you can register. Encourage your HVS ALUMNI friends to come as well. in the meantime if you have questions feel free to email Leora at

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Richard Williams

Richard Williams

After an impressive and diverse career spanning several decades, Dick Williams, who heads up the HVS Food and Beverage Division, is enthusiastically charting a course for the next exciting stage in his life as he retires in December.

Dick is a graduate of the Cornell Hotel School where he took every food and beverage course offered. This included studying international hotel cuisine, restaurant management, small quantity cooking, and quantity cooking. After graduation from Cornell, he did an apprenticeship as a sous chef at the Café Promenade, the best restaurant in Denver in 1970. Immediately following his apprenticeship, he was lured away by a fine French establishment, Chateau Pyrenees, where he assumed the role of executive chef. In 1978, a unique opportunity presented itself for Dick to utilize “sweat equity” to re-open the Buckhorn Exchange as managing partner. The Buckhorn Exchange is still going gangbusters and has been featured on the Travel Channel’s Man vs. Food, Steak Paradise, and other television shows.

After many years in the restaurant business, Dick joined Coldwell Banker Commercial in its downtown Denver office as a retail broker specializing in the sale and leasing of shopping centers. This eventually led to Dick’s becoming a hotel appraiser. Dick initially worked with Bill Hopping, MAI. Dick joined HVS in 1993 when Greg Hartmann opened an HVS office in Boulder. In 1994, Dick started the Food & Beverage division.

The HVS Food & Beverage Services division has served a variety of clients over the years, performing both food and beverage consulting, and appraisals and market studies. As a result of Dick’s experience as a property tax hearing officer and arbitrator for several Denver area counties, the Food & Beverage division had a successful sideline of preparing real estate tax appraisals for property tax protests of large full-service hotels.

Dick is not saying “goodbye” to his colleagues, and already has plans to be available for the HVS Miami office on specific assignments and special projects.

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Office Buzz

HVS Executive Search’s film “The Power of Advice” has been selected as a winner at the prestigious Cannes Corporate Media & TV Awards in the online film category. The awards ceremony will be held in Cannes on October 18th, where the exact award will be announced. Pooja Vir and Keith Kefgen will be attending with Tom Haines, the movie’s director. You can see the full film and bonus features here.

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Alumni Events

The HVS New York office will host an alumni event this upcoming January 14th, 2013. Kindly mark your calendars’ and wait for more details to come.

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Brian Guernier

HVS Office: San Francisco

Years with HVS: 3 years

Fun facts about yourself: After 25+ years of hotel real estate related work, I finally changed the direction of my career. I recently became LEED accredited, and combined with my BS in Natural Resources Management, I am focusing my efforts on green initiatives.

Personal and/or Professional Update: I just launched Pillow-Fresh to service the hospitality industry. Pillow-Fresh provides a sustainable alternative to pillow replacement, at a fraction of the cost of purchasing new while significantly reducing landfill waste. Go to for more info.

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Sandra Lien

Sandra Lien

Personal and/or Professional Update: Sandra, who worked for HVS in San Francisco, is currently working with Pinnacle Advisory in their new West Coast office. Sandra joins Karen Johnson, who is President of Pinnacle Advisory, after working alongside her at Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels. Sandy will assist Karen in asset management, appraisals, and general hospitality consulting assignments. Please join me in congratulating her and wishing her well in this new endeavor!

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Gustav Bjoern

Gustav Bjoern

HVS Office: New York

Personal and/or Professional Update: Gustav, who worked for HVS in New York, has decided to establish his own advisory firm, G.C. BJOERN. Located in Copenhagen, G.C. BJOERN, focuses on hospitality dept and restructuring and origination. The move comes after four and a half years as Vice President of Hotel Finance at Aereal Bank, of which two years spent commuting between Frankfurt and Copenhagen to see his wife and two boys. Please join me in wishing him well in this new endeavor!

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Paul Soblik

Paul Soblik

HVS Office: New York

Personal and/or Professional Update: Please join me in congratulating Paul Soblik with the arrival of their baby girl, Amelie. She was born on March 21st and is quite healthy and full of life. Professionally, Paul is working with Credit Suisse in Zurich purchasing hotels for one of the bank’s many funds.

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Laurent de Kousemaeker

Laurent de Kousemaeker

HVS Office: London/Madrid

Years with HVS: 6 years

Fun facts about yourself: In the 6 years with HVS, there were a lot of market trips, lots of GM interviews, lots of research, analysis and RNA/FxVAR modeling (damn Simon wouldn’t let us get away with any shortcuts nor assumptions!) but also lots of fun memories: Dominique with his “funny walks”, Gerard fantasizing about starting his Yotel idea, and storming out of the annual bonus discussion meetings, playing jokes on Justin in the library… and many laughs at the local corner pub on Fridays with Bernie, Michael (O’Hare or was it Hehir?), Carine, Philippa and many others. Also great to see how well Sophie did at HVS after helping me start-up the Madrid office, from its inception, renting corner space at the DTZ Madrid office. I always enjoy reconnecting with my ex-colleagues and friends from the HVS times.... see you soon.

Personal and/or Professional Update: Laurent currently leads the hotel development team for all the brands for the Caribbean, Mexico, Central America and South America, which includes Bulgari Hotels & Resorts, Edition, JW Marriott, Renaissance, Courtyard, AC by Marriott, Marriott Executive Apartments, Residence Inn, Fairfield Inn and the Autograph Collection. Prior to his current position, Laurent was Senior Vice President for the same region and, prior to that, vice president development for Spain and Portugal, based in Madrid.

He started at HVS in London in 1999 as a consultant & valuation analysts in, where he grew to become senior associate, to then move on to open up the HVS Madrid office, which he lead from 2002 to 2005. Prior to that, he worked in a range of hotel operation divisions for a number of years in Europe and the Caribbean. Having grown-up in Africa, Asia and Europe, he is fluent in Spanish, French, Dutch and English. He and his wife, Paula, now live in Bethesda (MD) with their son (Sascha) and a daughter (Felicia).

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Animesh Pandey

Animesh Pandey

HVS Office: Dubai

Years with HVS: 2 years

Personal and/or Professional Update: Animesh recently accepted a position in Real Estate Development with Emaar, The Economic City. Emaar.E.C, established in September 2006, is a Saudi joint stock company managed by Emaar Properties PJSC, one of the world’s largest property developers, and a number of investors.

Emaar.E.C leads the master-planning and development of the 168 million sq m King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC), a project being built on a pristine location off the Red Sea in the north of Jeddah. SAGIA (Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority), the body responsible for inward investments into the Kingdom, is the prime facilitator for KAEC.

KAEC, a New Age City being built today for tomorrow’s generation of Saudi citizens, has six components – sea port, industrial valley, educational zone, central business district with commercial, mixed-use, retail outlets and financial island, resorts and residential area.

The mega-project works closely with the Kingdom’s on-going drive to expand the economy create employment opportunities for its youthful population and function as a catalyst to attract foreign investment, global trade, commerce and industry. Based on initial forecasts, the project and its several components will create up to one million employment opportunities in the various industries and service-oriented companies that will open in KAEC. It will also be home to 2 million residents.

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Zubin Saxena

Zubin Saxena

HVS Office: New York

Years with HVS: 7 years

Personal and/or Professional Update: Please join me in congratulating Zubin in his new role as a proud Dad! On August 13, Vandana and Zubin were delighted by the arrival of their daughter, Zara. Both Vandana and the baby are doing quite well.

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Holden Lim

HVS Office: San Francisco

Years with HVS: 2 years

Personal and/or Professional Update: Holden is the Managing Director in the San Francisco office of HFF and is primarily responsible for institutional-grade hotel and resort property transactions throughout North America. During the course of his 23-year career, Mr. Lim has completed more than $3.5 billion in real estate transactions, representing a variety of structures that include dispositions, debt financings and equity recapitalizations.

Mr. Lim joined the firm in November 2010. Prior to HFF, he was President of Hospitality Link, a real estate advisory firm specializing in the hospitality sector. Previously, Mr. Lim was Senior Director with Cushman & Wakefield Sonnenblick Goldman for 11 years. Some of the deals with which he was intimately involved include the sale of the Westin St. Francis, JW Marriott San Francisco and San Diego Hilton Gaslamp Quarter, the financing of the Ilikai Hotel (currently The Modern Honolulu Hotel), Montage Beverly Hills Hotel, Spa & Residences, AMANGANI, Beverly Hilton, Hilton Los Cabos Beach & Golf Resort and the Palomar Hotel Philadelphia, and the joint-venture equity raise and financing of the OHANA Waikiki Beachcomber. Mr. Lim also has hotel operations and consulting experience, including a variety of management positions with Westin Hotels and HVS International in San Francisco.

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Emily Lustig

Emily Lustig

HVS Office: Chicago

Years with HVS: 1 year

Personal and/or Professional Update: Emily has decided to join Jones Lang LaSalle after one wonderful year with HVS. Her new role consists of strategic advisory and research. Please join me in wishing her well in this new endeavour.

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Upcoming Conferences and Events Hosted by HVS

TRE - TOURISM REAL ESTATE - CONFERENCE AND EXHIBITION: HVS is pleased to announce the third edition of TrE, the Tourism real Estate event dedicated to hospitality and tourism related real estate developments, set against the marvelous scenery of the city of Venice. TrE will focus on the Mediterranean area's and Italy's hotel development, investor climate, and many of the current issues facing the industry. It will also open windows on some emerging countries by hosting delegates, exhibitors, and showing the ongoing trends.

Produced by Tre-Expovenice, at its 3rd edition, TrE will see HVS, as a partner, hosting some of the main conferences and supporting the internationalization of the event. TrE involves the top players in the hospitality and tourism real-estate community (including local and international investors, lenders, developers, hotel groups, public authorities, consultants, lawyers, architects, region’s decision makers, and opinion leaders) to address the current opportunities and challenges in the industry. TrE will provide a great platform for delegates to share views, insights, and proposed strategies for advancing the hospitality and tourism sectors in the region. Last year numbers showed: 1,200 participating companies and institutions, 15 countries represented, 100 exhibitors, 5,000 visitors, 200 speakers, 40 conventions, and workshops.

This year, TrE will be held October 3-5 in Venice. For more information, visit To benefit from the HVS friends and family discount of 10% enter the promotion code "HVS" when completing the registration form.

LIFESTYLE/BOUTIQUE HOTEL DEVELOPMENT CONFERENCE 2012: Join us in Miami at the fabulous Fontainebleau for the 4th annual Lifestyle/Boutique Hotel Investors Conference. This exciting conference is a two-and-half day conference which focuses on the growing lifestyle and boutique sectors of the lodging industry. Major topics include all aspects of development and the unique aspects of operations and marketing in this special segment. This conference is produced by Lodging Hospitality in affiliation with HVS Hotel Management.

This year, Lifestyle/Boutique Hotel Investors Conference will be held October 17-19 at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach. For more information, visit

2012 U.S. HOTEL APPRAISALS HOSPITALITY CONFERENCE: Join U.S. Hotel Appraisals at its third-annual hotel and hospitality conference at the Embassy Suites Washington, D.C. Convention Center hotel. The conference is dedicated to helping limited- and select-service hotel owners, lenders, investors, managers, and other stakeholders make new connections and plans for realizing goals for their hotels in the coming year.

A focus of the upcoming conference bears on recent trends and projections for performance and values of limited- and select-service hotels, as well as the current market for financing, selling, and buying properties in these asset classes. Other topics on the agenda include the potential impact of the upcoming presidential elections on the U.S. hotel market and panel discussions on current trends, opportunities, performance strategies, and market updates for U.S. limited- and select-service hotels.

This year, U.S. Hotel Appraisals Hospitality Conference will be held October 18th at the Embassy Suites Washington, D.C. Convention Center hotel. For more information, visit

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Power of Advice


"Advice is a part of what you get from people – it’s part of the food that feeds you. Without it, you’re alone."
Michael A Leven, President & COO, Las Vegas Sands in the film The Power of Advice produced by HVS Executive Search

On our journey to becoming trusted advisers, HVS Executive Search explored what business leaders are looking for in an advisor. We asked the question: "What is the power of advice?"

Our 12-month enquiry transformed into a film called The Power of Advice. Directed by British filmmaker Tom Haines with an original score by French composer Jean-Gabriel Becker, the film features twenty of the most successful hospitality leaders from around the world. It explores themes surrounding the giving and receiving of advice and offers exclusive insight into the careers of some of the hotel industry’s brightest minds.

We shot the film in London, New York, Las Vegas and Hong Kong and interviewed the heads of companies such as MGM Hospitality, Hilton Worldwide, Wyndham Hotel Group, Four Seasons, Loews Hotels and Las Vegas Sands. The film’s the stars divulge their greatest sources of advice, along with the people who have encouraged and advised them in their journey to the top of the hospitality industry.

“My partners and I thought the Power of Advice was a theme worthy of further exploration. Rarely is the role of advisor discussed, and yet most successful business leaders seek advice on a regular basis. We are extremely pleased with the quality and message of the film and hope that it proves to be thought-provoking for our viewers,” Keith Kefgen.

Patrick Imbardelli, President and CEO Pan Pacific Hotels Group was one of the hospitality chiefs who stars in the film. He commented: “I am delighted to be part of this great initiative by HVS Executive Search. Sharing my own experiences for this film really made me reflect on the importance on advice, coaching, mentoring and leadership - and all the people in my career who did that for me. It also reminded me of the very positive and instrumental role I could, and should play, in providing advice, a sounding board, professional insight – and in so doing shape someone else’s career, even enhance or broaden a particular worldview.”

The first screening of The Power of Advice took place last week at the HVS Hotel Investment Conference South Asia (HICSA) in Mumbai this year. The first film will be followed by further five-minute films scheduled for release over the next 12 months. All can be viewed at

You can watch the film at and do follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

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  • The 3rd HVS UHOF (Ukrainian Hotel Operations Forum), hosted by HVS Executive Search in Kiev was a tremendous success and saw a 100-strong attendee list from all the major local and international players currently building their portfolios in the Russia and Ukraine hotel market. Amongst the most popular subjects of discussion was the upcoming EURO 2012 event and its projected impact on trade and tourism.
  • New hires: Kristina Nikolaeva as intern
  • Both HVS ES and HVS C&V under Tatiana’s supervision in Moscow are having an extremely busy year and are looking to add to our current 6-person team at least 3-4 new associates between the two services.
  • Picture (left to right) of the HVS ES Moscow team: Galina Kuzmina (sitting), standing – Varvara Ivanova, Mikhail Taratynov, Tatiana Veller, Kristina Nikolaeva.
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  • HVS Moscow will organize the 1st CIS Investment Conference in Baku, Azerbaijan in September 2012. The aim of this event is to gather the finance institutions, hotel brands, investors and developers interested in doing business in the untapped market of the CIS countries.
  • HVS Moscow participated in a charity event together with major Russian hoteliers. In March we ran a clothing drive to support an orphanage located in the hardship locations of Russia. Also in April, together with the Ararat Park Hyatt Moscow, we organized a charity Sunday brunch that featured an art auction. We helped raise more than $5,000 for a charity that helps orphans in Russia.
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Carter Wilson

Carter Wilson

In addition to working for STR Analytics, Carter Wilson has been a writer for many years. Carter landed an agent with his first novel, but it wasn’t until his fifth completed work that he finally made a sale. In June 2012, Vantage Point Books published FINAL CROSSING: A NOVEL OF SUSPENSE, which is available in bookstores and online. Carter’s books are all thrillers to some degree, and FINAL CROSSING is his first work where he explored the mind of a serial killer. In the book, a man named Rudiger is obsessed with the concept of the End of Days, and he believes he can bring about the end of the world if he finds the right person to crucify. Only he doesn’t know who that person is, so he uses clues provided by his deranged mind to select his victims. The protagonist—a Senator’s Chief of Staff—knew Rudiger in the Army, and enlists the help of a psychic criminologist to help stop Rudiger.

If you would like to learn more about Carter or the book (and links to buy it online), please visit his website at

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Upcoming Conferences and Events Hosted by HVS

HVS Regional Hospitality Valuation Summit Series: Whether you’re a hotelier seeking funds for a new project, an investor looking for variable opportunities in hotel markets across the U.S., or a stakeholder eager for insights on the present and future dynamics of the industry, join us for a series of enlightening discussions on the state of the U.S. hotels in 2012 and beyond. Each summit will deliver critical insights from a panel of experts on trends in hotel lending and valuation. You’ll also receive an up-to-the-moment snapshot of hotel values, transactions, cap rates, and operating trends for hotels in your region, as well as a forecast of hotel values through 2016.

Portland, OR - Portland Downtown Waterfront Marriott – July 12th
Orlando, FL – Embassy Suites Hotel, Lake Buena Vista – July 20th
Columbus, OH – Westin Columbus – July 26th

Midwest Lodging Investors Summit (MLIS): The Midwest Lodging Investors Summit is a leading conference for lodging industry owners, developers, operators, lenders, consultants and brand company marketers. Now in its fifth year, MLIS is expected to bring together 400 hotel industry executives to Chicago in July to listen, learn, share and socialize. This year, MLIS will be held July 16-18 at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place.

Hyatt Regency McCormick Place – Chicago, IL – July 16-18th

South American Hotel & Tourism Investment Conference (SAHIC): Following the 2011 Edition held in Santiago, Chile, and attended by over 450 participants from 20 countries around the world, this new SAHIC will be once again the "perfect place" to promote investment opportunities in the hotel and real estate-related business in the region. Key industry players, executives from major international holdings, and investors will again meet to explore new projects, make contacts, and conduct business.

Westin Lima Hotel & Resort Convention Center – Lima, Peru – September 10-11th

CIS & Georgia Hospitality Investment Conference (iCON): HVS is pleased to announce the first CIS & Georgia Hospitality Investment Conference (iCON) which will focus on the region's hotel development, investor climate and many of the current issues facing the industry. Scheduled for September 18-19, 2012 at the brand new JW Marriott Absheron Baku, iCON will bring together international investors and operators as well as some of the region’s decision-makers, governmental representatives and opinion leaders to address the current opportunities and challenges in the industry. iCON will provide a great platform for delegates to share views, insights, and proposed strategies for advancing the hospitality and tourism sectors in the region.

JW Marriott Absheron Baku – Baku, Azerbaijan – September 18-19th

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Lucienne Anhar

Lucienne Anhar

Lucienne, who worked for HVS in New York, was recently wed to Aloisio. Her wedding was held in Istanbul, Turkey and was featured on the cover of "Martha Stewart’s" Turkish magazine. She has a beautiful 9-month old daughter named India. Lucienne is currently working along with her family Bali and Java with Tugu Hotels Group ( Tugu Hotels Group operates four luxury boutique hotels and four restaurants throughout Indonesia.

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Saurabh Chawla

Saurabh Chawla

Saurabh, who worked for HVS in London, has decided to join Louvre Hotel Group (Starwood Capital) after six exciting and rewarding years with HVS. His new role consists of overseeing investment based developments and acquisitions opportunities outside Europe. His new role also involves swapping fish and chips for frog legs as he will be relocating from London to Paris.

Message from Saurabh: “It really was a pleasure to collaborate with you all and to have worked on various exciting projects with you. This world of ours is really small and I have no doubt that our paths will cross again soon. I look forward to being in touch and to (hopefully) working with you on other opportunities.”

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Marah Hutcheson

Marah Hutcheson

Marah, who worked for HVS in Las Vegas and San Francisco, has decided to join Orbit Medical after two wonderful years with HVS. Her new role consists of promoting durable medical equipment. She joins others in the effort to provide thousands the opportunity to regain their independence and receive medical supplies in the future. Please join me in wishing her well in this new endeavour.

Message from Marah: “It has been a wonderful privilege to have been given the opportunity to work with such a talented bunch of people. I wish you all great success, and your future endeavors.”

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Nevius Glussi

Nevius Glussi

Nevius, who worked for HVS in New York and Singapore, has decided to join New World Hospitality as Corporate Director of Development. New World Hospitality is an international hotel management company that operates an expanding collection of properties under three distinct brands, including the ultra-luxury Rosewood Hotels & Resorts, deluxe New World Hotels, and select-service pentahotels brands. Please join me in congratulating him

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Greg Perry

Greg Perry

Greg, who worked for HVS in Dubai, has decided to join IFA Hotel Investments. IFA Hotel Investments is a wholly owned subsidiary of IFA Hotels & Resorts and provides strategic direction to its operational assets and works to expand its portfolio. IFA Hotels & Resorts portfolio operational portfolio includes hotels, hotel condominiums, commercial, retail, and food and beverage ventures. IFA Hotel Investments also oversees the IFA Collection, which manages the company’s private residence clubs as well as yacht ownership club.

Fun Facts: - Advanced Open Water certified SCUBA diver – Learned how to drive at the age of 10 – Never lived in the same city more than 6 consecutive years – President of two student organizations in college – Once flew 12,500 km just to attend a friend’s wedding.

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Rodolfo Carlos

Rodolfo Carlos

Rodolfo has been selected by the London Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) to be among the torchbearers who will carry the Olympic flame as it journeys around the United Kingdom. He will be passing on the Olympic toch in Willenhall on June 30. Carlos, who works as a lead investment analyst at InterContinental Hotels Group in Atlanta, was chosen for this honor through LOCOG’s “Moment to Shine” campaign, which encouraged members of the public to nominate someone with an inspiring personal story or who has made a real difference in his or her school or local community. After suffering from thyroid cancer, Carlos began practicing Filipino martial arts as a way to rebuild his strength. He has been active in promoting their practice and sharing his knowledge with various branches of military, police, and community watch volunteers.

Carlos was also honored in March with two awards at the IHG the Americas conference. He was presented with the Aim Higher Award, and the President’s Award, the company’s highest honor.

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Anand Halankar

Anand Halankar

Nevius, who worked for HVS in New Dehli, has decided to join Red Planet Hotels. Red Planet Hotels Limited (RPHL) is a regional hotel investment company focused on Asia’s emerging markets. Please join me in congratulating him.

Fun Facts: "I love traveling, and Red Planet’s focus on Tier 2 cities in Asia has given me a chance to see some unique places such as Iloilo and Bacolod in the Philippines! Looking forward to more exciting travel!"

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Social Media Updates

We are pleased to share with you that HVS has entered the social media realm as another outlet to maintain our outreach and relationships. Please friend us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, join our HVS Global Hospitality Services group on LinkedIn, and subscribe to our channel on YouTube:

Facebook –
Twitter – @HVS_Consulting
LinkedIn –
YouTube – HVS Consulting
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Will Lee, formerly HVS New York

We regret to share the sad news that our friend Will passed away in his sleep November 1, 2011. For those whose lives were touched by Will and would like to send their condolences, you may reach out to Will’s widow Christina at Will was a bright light here at HVS and his intelligence , enthusiasm and smile will surely be missed by all.

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Terry Bickhardt, formerly Co-President of HVS Hotel Management

Terry recently joined Colwen Management, based in Nashua, NH as Senior Vice President. In Terry’s current role with Colwen he is primarily responsible for their hotel operations which include 20 properties - a mix of select and full service hotels, scattered around the New England states. Terry specifically oversees all the Marriott branded hotels in the company’s portfolio; Colwen also manages several Hilton select service brands.

Terry shared that his “time with HVS was very beneficial and educational to his career, specifically the Hotel Performance Analysis and Hotel Situation Analysis consulting and various asset management assignments” he was involved with. He learned much greater attention to detail with respect to hotel operations and hotel management while working with the HVS Hotel Management.

When he is not traveling around New England, Terry enjoys spending as much time as he can with his family and friends, playing his guitar barefoot so he can “feel the music,” and enjoying his lake house.

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Paul Rosenberg

Paul Rosenberg, formerly HVS Dubai

Since joining Hilton Worldwide in October 2009, Paul supports the Middle East Development Team by driving the Hilton portfolio of hotel brands’ growth throughout the region. Born into the hotel industry, Paul studied hospitality management at the Ecole Hôtelière de Lausanne, Switzerland. His financial specialism brought him to Dubai as a Consultant at HVS Dubai, earning him a thorough understanding of the Middle Eastern and North African hotel markets.

Passions for football, F1, archaeology and learning languages (six is his current tally) all vie for Paul’s attention in his spare time.
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HVS Couples News: Gisle and Lara Sarheim, formerly HVS London

Proud Papa Gisle was thrilled to share with us that on October 1, 2011, Lara (on maternity leave from HVS London) "gave birth to our second son, Alexander Christian, in the UK. Alexander was a healthy boy weighing 3,840g (8.4 lb), and a warmly welcomed addition to the family. Only 6 weeks thereafter we packed our household and set course for Singapore, where we are now settling in. Lara will tend to baby Alexander and Phillip (who is now three years old) for the immediate future, while I have changed roles within Hilton. Formerly a Director with Hilton’s Real Estate & Asset Management group based at Hilton’s international headquarters in the UK, I have now taken on a dual role as Senior Director, Feasibility & Investment Analysis | Real Estate & Asset Management. In my new capacity I will look after Hilton’s owned, leased and joint venture portfolio in Asia/Australia, as well as head up the Feasibility & Investment Analysis group in Asia Pacific and the Middle East, based at Hilton’s Asia Pacific office in Singapore. The family will be spending a warm holiday season in our new home country."

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HVS Couples News: Gisle and Lara Sarheim, formerly HVS London

Proud Papa Gisle was thrilled to share with us that on October 1, 2011, Lara (on maternity leave from HVS London) "gave birth to our second son, Alexander Christian, in the UK. Alexander was a healthy boy weighing 3,840g (8.4 lb), and a warmly welcomed addition to the family. Only 6 weeks thereafter we packed our household and set course for Singapore, where we are now settling in. Lara will tend to baby Alexander and Phillip (who is now three years old) for the immediate future, while I have changed roles within Hilton. Formerly a Director with Hilton’s Real Estate & Asset Management group based at Hilton’s international headquarters in the UK, I have now taken on a dual role as Senior Director, Feasibility & Investment Analysis | Real Estate & Asset Management. In my new capacity I will look after Hilton’s owned, leased and joint venture portfolio in Asia/Australia, as well as head up the Feasibility & Investment Analysis group in Asia Pacific and the Middle East, based at Hilton’s Asia Pacific office in Singapore. The family will be spending a warm holiday season in our new home country."

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And Lara added...

"Greetings from Singapore! It has nearly been three weeks since we arrived in Singapore and nearly one month since my last visit to the office. The past few weeks here have been exciting and I am glad to report that everything will soon settle down. We have found an apartment and are moving in as soon as our furniture arrives. The joy and glamour of living out of a suitcase with baby and toddler in hand are starting to wear off! As I did not have a chance to see everyone before leaving, I wanted to share my contact information for the future ( My life with HVS has been an exciting, eye-opening, challenging, learning, memorable, life changing, and definitely never boring, and most of all a pleasure to work with each of you."

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Julie Bourque Crawford recently shared with HVSAN (HVS Alumni News)

"I've been working on my master’s degree (M.A. in Teaching / Secondary Education) for a little over a year, and starting in January I’ll be student teaching. I’ll graduate in May, and I’m hoping that by this time next year I’ll be teaching high school English and Theatre.

I have really enjoyed working with you and all the other HVS’ers over the past twelve years, and I wish you the best!

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Jin Lee

Jin Lee currently serves as Chief Investment Officer and Managing Director for Thayer Lodging Group, based in Annapolis, Maryland. Jin enjoys negotiating, problem solving, and setting strategic direction using techniques learned throughout his 20-year career. Prior to Thayer, Jin gained extensive hotel investment experience at HEI Hotels & Resorts as Senior Vice President of Acquisitions and Development, at Kimpton Hotel & Restaurant Group as Vice President of Acquisitions and Development, at Marriott International as Director of Development Planning and Feasibility, and at HVS as a Vice President. He worked in the HVS San Francisco office for five years, where he completed feasibility analyses, market studies, and valuations of hotels, resorts, and mixed-use developments. Jin is a graduate of Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration and has an MBA from the University of California, Irvine. He is a member of the Urban Land Institute and the Cornell Hotel Society.

Outside of work, Jin is devoted to his family, enjoys fine wines and cooking, and fancies a good poker game.
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Michelle Russo

Michelle Russo grew up surrounded by the hospitality business and listening to stories from her father, an executive in the industry. Inspired by her surroundings, she studied at Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration. Following graduation, she worked in the HVS Mineola office for six years before transitioning into hotel asset management at John Hancock. Because of HVS, Michelle was able to maximize the value of hotels that she managed by effectively and efficiently identifying operational opportunities, conducting contract negotiations, and performing ROI analyses. She then moved to Wall Street as an analyst covering lodging and leisure stocks.

After advising many hotel owners, she looked for opportunities to leverage her skills against hotels that she owned and began to acquire roadside motels throughout New England. Concurrently, industry professionals sought her help with their own hotel assets. As a result, Michelle started her company Hotel Asset Value Enhancement ( in 2003. The company has grown to be one of the largest independent hotel real estate asset management firms in the country, with over $2 billion of assets currently under management and advising on over $4 billion of hotel real estate annually. She also co-founded StepStone Hospitality Management ( in response to client requests to be an operating partner. Because of this success, she was recently named a New England semi-finalist in Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year award.

On the personal side, Michelle is devoted to her family; spending time with her children relieves the stress of work. Before children and HotelAVE, she was an avid cyclist, having competed in the PanMass Challenge for 14 years and riding across Italy and Iowa. She has taken up the sport once more and now enjoys riding with her family.
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Suzanne Frey

Suzanne Frey is delighted to share the arrival of her baby boy, Savin, on June 3, 2011. Savin stands 1 foot, 7.75 inches tall and weighs 7 pounds, 14 ounces. He is complete with a mix of genes that has him showing up early like a Swiss (12am for a 5pm C-section), crying like a French, bossing his parents around like a German, demanding his mama like an Italian, eating every two hours like an American, and sitting on his diapered tush waiting for bribes like an Indian.
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Michelle Weiss

Michelle Weiss is currently part of the hotel team at Aareal Bank AG, one of the leading debt financing providers within the hospitality industry. The bank currently holds a portfolio of approximately €4 billion of hotel financing in more than 25 countries across Europe, North America, and Asia.

She worked in the HVS London office at the start of 2006, but after two months of training, she transitioned into the HVS Madrid office. While in Madrid, Michelle conducted feasibility and market studies and performed hotel valuations for major hotel clients in and outside of Spain. In June of 2007, she joined the brokerage team at HVS Hodges Ward Elliott in London and focused on the financing and sale of hotels as well as operator searches within Europe and the Middle East.

Prior to working at HVS, Michelle gained insights in international luxury hotel operations by working in various departments at the Grand Hotel Heiligendamm in Germany and the Hôtel de Paris in Monaco. However, her first experiences in hotel operations came much earlier in her life, observing and assisting as a little girl at her parents’ hotel in Bern, Switzerland.

Michelle graduated from Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL) in 2005 and holds a Bachelor of Science in International Hospitality Management. She has served as President of the Great Britain Chapter of the Alumni Ecole hôteliàre de Lausanne (AEHL) and remains involved with the alumni network in Frankfurt.

Michelle recalls her time with HVS and HVS Hodges Ward Elliott as a great experience, having had the opportunity to work in such an international environment, and is looking forward to staying in touch with the HVS team. The HVS Madrid office hopes to welcome her back to Madrid again very soon to share some delicious Spanish tapas and wine, which she enjoys and misses greatly.
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Tommy Nigro

After leaving HVS, Tommy Nigro joined Stonebridge Companies as Development & Portfolio Manager. Stonebridge Companies is a hotel developer / owner / operator based in the Denver metro area. Currently, Tommy is the Vice President of Real Estate at Stonebridge Companies. To learn more about this company, please visit the website at
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Lasse Ristolainen

Based in Cape Town, South Africa since July of 2011, Ristolainen is responsible for sourcing new management and franchising opportunities for the growth of Hilton Worldwide portfolio of brands throughout Central, Eastern, and Southern Africa. Prior to this role, Lasse was part of the pioneer team of Hilton Worldwide’s Feasibility and Investment Analysis for Europe & Africa; later, he directed the team in the Middle East and Asia Pacific. He earned an MBA from Cornell University and IMHI-ESSEC Business School in Paris and has previously worked in both consulting and general hotel management roles.

A former competitive boxer, Lasse enjoys yoga, wakeboarding, and exploring new destinations.
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Carter Wilson

Carter is a thriller writer, and his debut novel FINAL CROSSING is scheduled for release in June 2012 by Vantage Point Books. In addition, Carter is currently Director with STR Analytics in Boulder. STR Analytics leverages the unparalleled STR database of hotel performance metrics to provide new analytics, reporting tools, and advisory services to their clients.
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Christian Yang

Christian has been occupied with his wonderful family and entrepreneurial adventures, as he owns and operates multiple restaurants. His passion for the culinary arts has led him to open three restaurants to date; in the process, he has gained an appreciation for all the work it takes to open and operate his own business. On a personal note, Christian is dedicated to his wife Judith and his daughter Amberlie. Christian looks forward to the adventures that lie ahead and sharing them with his family.
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Ekaterina Gill

Ekaterina has continued her career outside of the hospitality industry as a Deputy Manager with Norilsky Nickel investment fund leasing division. Norilsky Nickel is the world’s largest producer of nickel and palladium and one of the leading producers of platinum and copper. Continuing her interest in physiology and training, Ekaterina is in the process of completing her intensive neuro-linguistic programming course and will soon be awarded the certificate needed to organize trainings throughout Russia.
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Michael Pajak Michael Pajak currently serves as Manger of Feasibility and Investment Analysis for Hilton Worldwide, based in McLean, Virginia. Michael recently joined Hilton Worldwide and is quickly settling into his role.
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Saurabh Gupta

HVS Alumnus Wins HICSA Award
Former HVS India Associate Director for Consulting and Valuations, Saurabh Gupta, was honored at the HICSA conference held in Mumbai April 7th and 8th.

Saurabh is the General Manager of the first Premier Inn in India in Bangalore. In his current role, he has been responsible for the pre-opening of the hotel and is actively involved with the strategic decisions of the group. Prior to joining HVS, Saurabh was with the Taj Group in various hotels and also tried his hand as an entrepreneur. He has written numerous articles on the hospitality industry in India, some of which have been widely quoted. Congratulations, Saurabh!

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Erik Warner and Rebecca Ruf
Erik and Rebecca here writing to touch base with everyone since we moved on from HVS in 2001 and 2000, respectively. As many of you know, Rebecca went off to Starwood and worked in their international development group under Karen Rubin, and I was hired by Art Adler of Jones Lang LaSalle to do national hotel brokerage. Fast forward to 2003, and I was hired by a Cargill-backed entity called RHF to oversee hotel investment underwriting, and then in 2004, Rebecca left Starwood to pursue her masters in International Development and Advanced International Economics at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) in Bologna, Italy.

By then, Bec and I had been dating for over three years, and our relationship was put to a test as bi-monthly travels to and from Europe became routine. As the saying goes, absence makes the heart grow fonder, and by 2007, we were married in a little town in California called Napa at a little property called Auberge du Soleil. Within a year, we had our first child, Jakob, and moved out of Tribeca to our current home in Brooklyn, near the Brooklyn Bridge.

Presently, I am still with RHF but now as a partner (our outstanding portfolio of hotel investments stands at about $200mm). Our business plan has evolved from being a lender to the industry to a buyer. Over the past four months, we have actively bid on over ten deals and $500mm of hotel assets; sadly, not converting any of those bids to purchases.

Rebecca switched gears a bit and is now in the capital markets group of Women’s World Banking (“WWB”). Her organization is the godmother of women’s micro-finance initiatives, supporting a network of 40 microfinance providers and banks in 28 countries that provide financial services to low-income women. What is extremely interesting about WWB is that through loans the size of less than $500, her group has been able to serve over 20 million women, helping them move out of poverty.

In general, we are both doing well and look forward to hearing from those of you we have not spoken to in awhile. Should you want to reach us our websites are: and

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Gustav C. Bjoern

Hooked, Booked and Soon to be Cooked
HVS New York alumni Gustav C. Bjoern and fiancé Alexandra, a doctor in general medicine working in Copenhagen, have known each other since play school. Romance finally bloomed over New Year’s Eve champers in 2006 when he returned from Boston for Christmas with the family. Gustav and Alexandra have spent much of their courtship in two different cities but all that is set to change after their wedding in May 2010 when Alexandra will move to Wiesbaden where Gustav is currently VP Property Finance with Aareal Bank.
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Susanne Frey

New York Nuptials
HVS New York alumni Susanne Frey and Sunil Hariani tied the knot on July 11, 2009. They are now back in New York after a honeymoon filled with bicycle rides in Maine. The happy couple is looking forward to Honeymoon Part Deux in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam over the forthcoming Christmas holidays.
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Carine Bonnejean

Welcome Baby Hugo!
HVS London alumni Carine Bonnejean and husband Guillaume Thevenot are delighted to share the arrival of their son Hugo who was born on 3rd July. Mummy and baby are doing very well!
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  Karen Rubin

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. has appointed Karen Rubin SVP/Global Development-Feasibility and Development Policy. She now works with Starwood's divisional development, finance, legal, franchise operations and global brand teams and reports to Simon Turner, president/Global Development. Since joining Starwood in 2000, Karen has held both divisional and global leadership roles in feasibility. Most recently, she supported Starwood's North American division with it feasibility needs. Prior to joining Starwood, Karen worked in a number of senior roles during her 18-year tenure with HVS in New York.
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  Linda Yang

HVS New York Alum Linda Yang married Garrick Yau in Tarrytown, NY on September 27, 2008. Many HVS alumni were in attendance to help celebrate the big day, including Yoo Mee Pak, Mark Owens, and Alison Tan, as well as Petr Kulic and Lucienne Anhar who traveled all the way from London and Bali. It was a perfect day and the rain held out just long enough to get outdoor photos. After the wedding, the happy couple left for a two week honeymoon, spent at two of Lucienne's amazing Indonesian resorts - Hotel Tugu Bali and her newest resort, Hotel Tugu Lombok. They had a wonderful time and praise Lucienne and her family for their luxury accommodations and amazing hospitality.
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Gisle Sarheim, HVS New York alumni currently working for the Feasibility & Investment Analysis Hilton International team in London, and Lara Sarheim, who works for HVS London are expecting a little baby boy in late November. Gisle and Lara met at the Ecole Hoteliere de Lausanne and married in Norway in July 2004. We wish them all the best in their new adventure!
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In August 2008, Laurent de Kousemaeker was appointed Senior VP Development Latin America & Caribbean for Marriott International based out of the headquarters in Washington D.C. Previously, Laurent was Vice President in charge of development for Spain and Portugal for Marriott International. Before joining Marriott, Laurent worked with HVS for six years. In 1999, Laurent joined the HVS London office, and in 2002 he successfully opened and managed the HVS Madrid office.

On a personal note, Laurent and his wife Paula just had a second child, a baby daughter called Felicia who was born on June 21st. Laurent and Paula also have a son, Sascha, who is about to turn three.
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Gerard Greene, CEO and partner of Yotel recently participated in the Tri For Life inaugural triathlon in the United Kingdom. The event was conceptualized to raise money for several charities that help children who are terminally ill and other worthwhile causes. Some of these charities are Rays of Sunshine Children's Charity, Great Ormond Street Hospital and Teenage Cancer Trust.

Gerard helped raise over £1700 to date! If you haven't sponsored him yet, get online and make your donations at

On a mission to revolutionize the hotel industry and save consumers from expensive and boring hotels, Gerard gave up work after five years as a hotel analyst, sold his home and joined forces with Simon Woodroffe, founder of the YO! Group to develop YOTEL, "the world's most radical hotel". Gerard's vision for YOTEL is to provide a first class experience at an affordable price.

As a director at HVS International, Gerard has worked on consultancy projects throughout Europe, the Middle East and Asia advising groups such as Goldman Sachs and Kingdom Holdings with brands from Four Seasons to Express by Holiday Inn. Previously, Gerard worked at an operational level for Hyatt International, Marriott Hotels & Resorts and Conran Restaurants.

You may find him on his bicycle training for a triathlon, scuba diving or even snooping around hotels, checking out the competition.
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Christopher Balfe (Eco Services, New York) is currently working as a freelancer based on environment initiatives for the hospitality industry clients including Tishman, Mario Battali, Gemstone Resorts, The French Culinary institute among others. He is married with two kids and resides in Bergen County.
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Riikka Moreau (Consulting and Valuation, London) an alumnus of the London Office, returned to work at the beginning of January after six months maternity leave following the birth of her son Alexis. Riikka currently works for Marriott as a manager in their feasibility department, where she works alongside another HVS Alumnus, Nicole Philips.

Nicole Philips (Consulting and Valuation, London) has been married to her husband Ian Philips since September 20, 2008. They are the proud parents of two little boys - Matthew who is 2, and Dennis who is 1 (as of September 2011). Nicole is a Vice President, International Hotel Development Planning Europe & MEA, with Marriott in London.
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Kate Henriksen HVS New York alum Kate Henriksen (Consulting and Valuation, New York ) can now add "mommy" to her list of responsibilities! Kate and her husband Keith Ohlinger are the proud parents of Ms. Gabrielle Marie, born October 2, and weighing 8 pounds 13 ounces. We wish Kate, Keith and little Gabrielle all the best. Kate is with RLJ Development in Bethesda, Maryland, as Director (Development).
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Bogdan Vasilescu (Consulting and Valuation, New York) has been at Starwood in Feasibility for almost 3½ years now and was promoted to Senior Director in August of last year.

On the personal level - most of his time away from work is spent taking care of the boys; that is very labor intensive, so, unfortunately, at the end of the day, he and his wife are too tired to do anything else other than rest.

They took their first vacation together, as a foursome, last June; spent a week at Rocking Horse Ranch, a family-resort in Highland, NY, about an hour NW from Scarsdale. They haven't decided what they want to do this year. His wife, Maura was talking about a Disney cruise with the extended family.
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Phil Golding (Consulting and Valuation, London) formerly an Associate Director with the London Office and now Vice President with Cedar Capital where he works alongside another HVS Alumnus, Ramsey Mankarious, has just returned from his honeymoon. The happy couple were married on 8 December 2007 in St Pauls Cathedral, London and spent their honeymoon in India and Sri Lanka.
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London Office Alumni Philippa Bock (HVS, London) and Justin Lanzkron (HVS, London) are both expectant parents in 2008. For Philippa and her husband Mark this will be their first child, and is due in the beginning of April.

For Justin and Louise its third time around as they already have two boys who were both born on the same day - 31 July - but two years apart ! Their third child is due in the middle of May.

Both former research analysts who worked their way up to be senior consultants, Philippa is currently working as an Investment Manager for Dawnay Day Structured Finance and Justin is now a Development Manager at Louvre Hotels. Both are still based in London.
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  Katerina Giannouka (Consulting and Valuation, London) alumni of the London Office, was thrilled to announce her recent engagement to Patrick Finn. Katerina is currently working at Starwood Hotels and Resorts in Brussels, where she is in charge of hotel development for Greece, Turkey, Cyprus and CEE countries.

Alison Tan serves as an Associate at Cushman & Wakefield Sonnenblick Goldman, specializing in financing and investment sales for hospitality assets. Since 2007 she has advised on over USD $2 billion of transactions representing a variety of institutional and opportunistic investors as well as ownership/management companies.

Prior to joining Cushman & Wakefield Sonnenblick Goldman, Alison worked as a Senior Associate for HVS New York. Her experience includes feasibility analysis, market studies, acquisition due diligence, and the valuation of hotel, resort, and mixed-use developments for a variety of institutional, corporate banking and individual clients. Alison has also held various management positions with Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts at the Four Seasons Hotel New York.

Alison holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the Cornell University School of Hotel Administration and is a member of the national chapter of the Cornell Hotel Society.
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Damien Greenwood came to HVS Boston as a Senior Associate in March of 2006. During his tenure with us he was engaged in many notable assignments. Highlights of his career with HVS included being the point person on a 28-asset portfolio acquisition by Rockwood Capital from Ocean Properties, the appr>aisal of a proposed hotel at the Gillette Stadium (home of the New England Patriots), and the due diligence for a proposed water park hotel in Upstate New York. In May of 2007, Damien left HVS to pursue his MBA at Cornell University's Johnson School of Management. He was a recipient of the Park Fellowship, which is a merit-based, two-year full tuition scholarship and stipend. Selection of this fellowship is based on leadership, professional achievements, public service, and academics. Damien is scheduled to receive his MBA in 2009.

Damien is currently working on a start-up real estate investment fund with several of his peers at the Johnson School. The target fund size is $2 to $3 million. The goal is to teach real estate focused MBA students how to analyze real estate investments in both the public and private markets, with a long term vision of creating a real estate investment fund that allows students to invest in public real estate companies and place direct investments.

We expect great things from Damien and will update you in the future as to his progress!
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Derek Olsen, an alum of the HVS Miami office, is presently a Director with Capital Hotel Management, Beverly, MA. Prior to this he was working as a Director with O'Connell Hospitality Group in Boston and performed portfolio analyses, provided transaction services for major financial institutions, implemented disposition plans of national real estate companies for non-strategic assets, evaluated alternative land uses and sourced financing for hotel and resort acquisitions and development projects.

With HVS, Derek completed consulting assignments involving projects with a market capitalization in excess of USD $3 billion. Derek is also an alum of Cornell University, School of Management (Class of 1992) and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Class of 2000). He co-authored 'The Impact of E-Commerce on Commercial Real Estate'.
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Vice President, Hotel Acquisitions & Development
Loews Hotels

In her role at Loews Hotels, Bali is responsible for growing the company through acquisitions, management contracts and new developments. Most recently these have included the development of the Loews Atlanta Hotel slated to open in 2010, the acquisition of the Loews Lake Las Vegas Resort in Henderson, NV (formerly a Hyatt Regency) and the addition of The Madison, A Loews Hotel in Washington DC to Loews Hotels' managed portfolio. Prior to joining Loews Hotels in 2003, she was a Vice President at Sonnenblick-Goldman Company, a real estate investment banking firm where she participated in the marketing, structuring and closing of over USD $2 billion dollars in hotel capital transactions. Earlier in her career, Bali focused on appraisal and valuation work at the private hospitality consulting firm HVS International, as well as hotel operations with Hyatt Hotels. Bali is a graduate of the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University. She has recently completed her third year of teaching a graduate level Hotel Market Analysis class at NYU's School of Continuing and Professional Studies. Professional affiliations include New York Commercial Real Estate Women (NYCREW Network), where she served on the Board for five years, as well as Women's Hospitality Investment Network (WHIN), where she is a member of the leadership committee. Bali lives in Brooklyn, NY with her husband Fred Holland.
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George Comitos an alumnus of the HVS San Francisco office, is presently a senior analyst (commercial real estate appraiser) at Integra - San Francisco, San Francisco, CA. George is a California State Certified, Commercial Real Estate Appraiser. Prior to his current position, George was employed at Washington Mutual Bank, Specialty Finance Group, and Hulberg & Associates, Inc. (a San Francisco Bay Area commercial appraisal firm). George received the Appraisal Institute’s MAI designation in 2009, and appraises a variety of commercial real estate property types, including: retail; office; industrial; and of course, lodging and hospitality properties.

Thanks to Susan Mellen, and Stephen Rushmore, both fellow MAIs, for the chance to enter this profession and to follow in their footsteps!

While at HVS, George completed numerous appraisal, and appraisal consulting assignments and wrote several articles involving hospitality and lodging properties located within nine-county San Francisco Bay Area. George is also an alum of Cornell University (SHA Class of 1999 - the last graduating class of the 20th Century).

George A. Comitos
CA OREA #AG029752
Integra - San Francisco
East Bay Office
200 Pringle Avenue, Ste. 325
Walnut Creek, CA 94596
(925) 938-2600, ext. 102
(925) 930-6880 FAX
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Kimberly Moffitt Hehir has served as Vice President of strategic planning for The Leading Hotels of the World Ltd. since 2003. She is responsible for managing the company's 11 joint ventures and ancillary businesses, and acts as a liaison between each department within the organization to ensure that all goals are consistent with the company's strategic plan. Kimberly is also responsible for sourcing and evaluating new business opportunities and implementing those which yield a substantial return on investment, deliver value to the shareholders, enhance member benefits, and will achieve the company's overall goal of becoming an all-inclusive provider of goods and services to the luxury marketplace. Prior to joining The Leading Hotels of the World, Ltd., Kimberly was a Senior Investment Analyst at Shaffer & Company, which owned and asset managed over USD $1 billion of luxury hotel properties.

Kimberly was a senior investment analyst at Shaffer & Company, which owned and asset managed over USD $1 billion of luxury hotel properties, many of which are members of The Leading Hotels of the World. Prior to that, she was the global director of marketing and corporate communications for Sonnenblick-Goldman Company, an international real estate investment-banking firm averaging USD $10 billion in annual transactions. Before joining Sonnenblick-Goldman, Kimberly was the director of strategic marketing for HVS International.

Recently named as one of Travel Agent Magazine's "Most Powerful Women in Travel," Kimberly has authored numerous articles; lectured at various universities, including Cornell University, Pennsylvania State University, Sacred Heart University and NYU where she was an adjunct professor; spoken at a number of conferences, including the World Congress for Tourism, the NYU Investment Conference, the Lodging Conference, the AH&MA Annual Conference, European Leisure Real Estate Symposium and the Relais & Châteaux Annual Conference; and organized large industry events including the Asia's Hotel Investment Conference and the United Nations Conference for Tourism.

A graduate of Cornell University's School of Hotel Administration, Kimberly is a member of the President's Council of Cornell Women, has served as the Cornell Hotel Society's New York City Chapter President since 2003, and is a member of the Board of Directors for HMS World Supply, LLC, a technology company that provides electronic commerce solutions to global companies.

Look out for more updates on Kimberly in this space!
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Linda serves as a director of The Ackman-Ziff Real Estate Group, specializing in financing and investment sales for hospitality assets. Previously with Sonnenblick Goldman, Linda completed USD $2 billion in hotel transactions, representing a variety of institutional and opportunistic investors, in addition to owner/operators. While at HVS International, Linda consulted and appraised in excess of USD $2 billion in hospitality real estate.

Her experience included feasibility analysis, market studies, acquisition due diligence, and the valuation of hotel, motel, resort, and mixed-use developments for a variety of institutional, corporate banking and individual clients. Linda has also held various management positions with Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts at the Four Seasons Hotel in Philadelphia. Linda is a graduate of Cornell's School of Hotel Administration and is a board member of the Cornell Hotel Society's New York City Chapter.
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After graduating with a BSci from the Lausanne Business School of Hospitality Management, Lucienne Anhar worked for HVS in New York, where she was in charge of appraising over 60 hotels and worked on hospitality consulting projects and feasibility studies. After almost three years in HVS, she rejoined her family business in Bali and Java, Tugu Hotels Group ( She developed and operates four luxury art hotels and two private villas in Bali and Java, as well as four independent fine dining restaurants in Jakarta.

For her, Tugu, the group of hotels and restaurants, is very special - They are small but quite well known now for their unique hospitality and artful design. It's really something she is very proud of.
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Mark Owens serves as a Managing Director of Ackman-Ziff and is responsible for the origination and placement of hospitality related transactions, including debt, equity, joint venture equity and transaction sales. Mark was formerly a Vice President at Sonnenblick Goldman and closed USD $3 billion in transactions representing a variety of institutional and opportunistic investors as well as ownership/management companies.

Mark also worked at HVS New York office, where he consulted on more than USD $2 billion in hospitality real estate, including expert testimony, valuations, feasibility analysis, operational consulting and strategic marketing initiatives.

Mark Owens is a graduate of Cornell's School of Hotel Administration, is an active participant in the Cornell Hotel Society's New York Chapter, and has been a frequent guest lecturer at New York University.
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Philipp von Bodman joined the head office of Grand City Hotels & Resorts in December 2008. In his role as Corporate Analyst, he analyses the performance of individual properties within the hotel portfolio on a monthly basis and reports back the results directly to the owners. Furthermore, he also evaluates and assists in the acquisitions process of new properties. The company has shown rapid growth in the last 3 years, starting with 15 properties in 2006 and has now grown to owning and operating 60 hotels under its own brand and under various international franchise brands.

Prior to joining Grand City Hotels & Resorts, Philipp was Asset Manager at Mountain Capital Ltd., a private equity investor based in London with a hotel portfolio of 20 properties within the European market. He also worked at Hotel IQ as a mystery shopper and assessed the quality of more than 120 hotels within the 4&5-star markets in over 120 countries. At HVS London Philipp performed a number of valuations and feasibility studies in Europe and Africa. He describes his time with HVS as this "stepping stone to the hospitality industry".

Philipp graduated from IMHI-Paris in 2004 with an MBA in International Hotel Administration and joined the exchange program with Cornell University's MMH program for one semester in 2003.

Philipp says, "I have fond memories of my work experience with the HVS team in London, which offered me the opportunity to work with and learn from a vast group of young professionals from all over the world."
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Peggy Yip joined the Hong Kong office of Horwath HTL in June 2006. Since that time, Peggy has conducted a number of feasibility and market studies as well as renovation and repositioning studies throughout Mainland China and North Asia. Peggy has also been involved with management selection process for prominent developers in Asia. Prior to joining Horwath HTL's consulting team, Peggy worked at the global headquarters of Hotel Valuation Services (HVS) in New York, United States and has worked on nearly 100 projects ranging from valuations to market studies throughout North America. These projects encompass all industry segments including 5 star city hotels, resort properties, mid-scale regional hotels, budget hotels, and mixed-use developments. Peggy has also authored several hotel related articles in international lodging trade journals. Peggy has a Bachelors and Masters of Science in Hospitality, Tourism and Travel from New York University, New York, United States of America.
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Based in New York, Hehir is Managing Director of Trinity Investments, LLC, a global real estate investment firm with offices in New York, Honolulu, Mexico City and Tokyo. He is responsible for overseeing the firm's investment activities including sourcing and executing investment opportunities, formulating investment strategy, structuring acquisitions and dispositions, and asset management.

Hehir has more than 12 years of comprehensive experience in North American and international real estate investments, primarily hospitality related. While at Trinity Investments, LLC and its predecessor company, Trinity Investment Trust L.L.C. Hehir has executed over of USD $3 billion of hotel/resort and commercial real estate investments.

Prior to joining Trinity, in 1998, Hehir worked for HVS International as a Senior Associate performing in-depth market studies, financial analyses, income and expense projections, valuations and feasibility studies, competitive market and property positioning studies, and operational reviews for hotels ranging from limited service to full service corporate and resort properties.

Hehir, an Irish citizen, was raised predominantly in Botswana and also lived in South Africa, Australia and Switzerland. He holds a Diploma in Hotel Administration from the Hotel Institute Montreux, Switzerland and is a graduate of Cornell University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Hotel Administration.
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Wendy joined the corporate headquarters of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide in August 2004. She currently serves as a Director of Owner Services for the North America Division. Prior to this role, she served in various other roles within Starwood, including positions within Real Estate Investment Management, Sheraton Brand Standards & Compliance, and Joint Ventures & Dispositions.

Prior to working at Starwood, Wendy spent a number of years working in both hotel operations and hotel consulting, both domestically and internationally. The hotels in which she has worked include: The Mayfair Regent in New York City, The Regent Hong Kong, Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten in Hamburg, Germany, and La Samanna in St. Martin, French West Indies. Wendy also spent several years working as a Senior Associate for HVS International in Mineola, New York, providing hospitality consulting and appraisal services.

Wendy is a Valedictorian of Brooklyn Technical High School. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University's School of Hotel Administration, where she graduated with Distinction and was named a Cornell National Scholar and a Cornell Tradition Fellow. Wendy also holds a Master of Science degree from New York University's Real Estate School.

Born in Hong Kong, Wendy immigrated to the U.S. at the age of 10 and spent her teenage years growing up in Staten Island, New York. Wendy currently resides in Fort Lee, New Jersey with her daughter Allison and her son Ryan.

Wendy has served as a Board Member of the New York City Chapter of Cornell Hotel Society and has been involved with the Cornell Alumni Ambassador Network. Wendy is fluent in Cantonese and is proficient in German. Her passions in life include food and travel.
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