* CHANGING FACES On January 1, 2000, Doug Geoga will step down as president of Hyatt Hotels to assume management responsibility of a new hospitality industry financing venture for the Pritzker family, which owns Hyatt. Geoga will be succeeded by Scott Miller, who is executive vice president of Hyatt Development Corp.
Peter J. Bonell has joined Colonial Williamsburg Hotel Properties Inc. as the new vice president of hotel sales and. Bonell was most recently managing director of sales and marketing for Hershey Resorts in Hershey, Pa.
Don Welsh has been named senior vice president of sales at Wyndham International Inc., based in Dallas. Welsh comes to Wyndham from MGM Grand Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, where he was responsible for all sales and marketing for the MGM Grand Las Vegas and the new MGM Grand Detroit.
Lori Fujishige has joined Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, based in Los Angeles, as corporate and group sales coordinator for the western region of the United States and Canada. Fujishige was formerly sales coordinator for the national sales office of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide in Los Angeles.
Stephen Weber has been named national sales director, Eastern region, at Dolce International, based in Montvale, N.J. Weber most recently served as director of sales for Harrison Conference Services in Tarrytown, N.Y.
Rachel A. McKenna has been named national sales manager at LaPlaya Beach Resort in Naples, Fla. She will be responsible for sales throughout Washington, D.C., Virginia, and the Midwest. McKenna was most recently sales manager for the Fairmont Hotel Dallas. Also at LaPlaya, Wendy E. Coulson was appointed national sales manager, responsible for sales in the Northeast, including New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. Coulson previously was sales manager for the Westin Resort in Hilton Head Island, S.C.
Leandro A. Cruz has been appointed director of sales at Abbey Hotel, a boutique hotel in Miami Beach. Cruz was previously in the sales department at Premier Resorts and Hotels' flagship property, Casa De Campo, in the Dominican Republic.
At The Colony Beach & Tennis Resort in Longboat Key, Fla., Hilary Rosenthal has been named director of sales. Before joining The Colony, Rosenthal was corporate sales manager for the Hyatt Regency in Greenville, S.C.
Barry Wolfert has been named director of sales at the Hilton Lake Lanier Islands Resort, near Atlanta. Wolfert was previously director of sales at the Atlanta office of the Puerto Rico Convention Bureau.
Rick Reed has joined the Sheraton Suites/Galleria Area Hotel in Houston as director of sales and marketing. Reed has held similar sales positions in several of Houston's hotel properties.
Nicole Wilson has been appointed sales manager at The Westin Portland (Ore.), where she will manage corporate travel sales. Wilson was previously executive conference manager at the Benson Hotel in Portland.
Melisa A. Novick is the new director of sales at Trump International Hotel & Tower in New York, where she was promoted from the position of director of corporate accounts.
At Miramar at Waikiki, Richard Oshiro has rejoined the property as director of sales and marketing. He was formerly regional director of sales for WestCoast Hotels. Also at Miramar, Myra Kamihara is sales manager, responsible for the corporate market. She was previously sales manager for Ala Moana Hotel, also on Oahu.
Denise L. Hunter, CHME, has been promoted to vice president of the New York office at the Krisam Group. She will be responsible for corporate and association business in the Northeast. The Krisam Group is headquartered in Washington, D.C.
* GOING PLACES The Barnsley Inn and Golf, Georgia's newest luxury resort, recently held a grand opening celebration that included horse-and-carriage rides, strolling antebellum characters, and tours of the resort and its 18-hole Jim Faziodesigned golf course. The property, built as a 19th-century village with 45 individual buildings, was designed with small, high-level incentive conferences and executive retreats in mind. The 33 one-, two-, and four-bedroom cottages make up a total of 70 suites. They feature private porches with rocking chairs overlooking private gardens, wood-burning fireplaces, cordless phones with dataports, and other amenities. The Pavilion, in the heart of the resort's pedestrian village, offers meeting facilities, as do two club-like boardrooms and a gallery for pre-function and break gatherings. In addition to the golf course, the site, at the foothills of the Appalachians, has tennis courts, a full fitness area with pool, a health spa, and 4.5 miles of hiking trails. The resort is in Bartow County, one hour from downtown Atlanta, in the Barnsley Historic District.
Wyndham Hotels and Resorts has converted the Arlington Marriott Hotel to the Wyndham Arlington DFW Airport South Hotel in Arlington, Texas. The 310-room hotel is the brand's first property in the city. As part of the conversion, Wyndham is putting $46 million into a two-phase renovation, first to redo all first-floor public space and landscaping by the end of this year and then to redo all meeting facilities. The property's guest rooms, which were completely renovated 18 months ago, will also be updated with new interior designs. The hotel offers 21,000 square feet of meeting space, including a 6,000-square-foot ballroom and 4,000-square-foot outdoor plaza with private yacht club. Also available: a full-service health and fitness center, full-service business center, and jogging trails.
Marriott recently added four properties to its Meetings Network, a collection of meeting hotels and resorts in the United States, Mexico, and the Caribbean that cater to groups with distinctions such as "Rooms that Work," Marriott's business-traveler-oriented guest room.The new properties are: Tampa Marriott Waterside, a 717-room hotel adjacent to the 600,000-square-foot Tampa Convention Center and opening in early 2000; Memphis Marriott Downtown, a 400-room hotel in the midst of a $14 million renovation program that will redo guest rooms and the hotel's 10,000 square feet of meeting space; the 1,338-room Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, Washington, D.C., undergoing a $100 million renovation to be completed at the end of the year; and the 295-room Williamsburg Marriott, close to Colonial Williamsburg and Busch Gardens and offering 45,000 square feet of meeting space.
* BEYOND BORDERS Hilton International will add 1,022 guest rooms to its London inventory by early 2001.
By October 2000, the company will add 373 guest rooms and 37 meeting rooms to its Hilton London Metropole property. After the addition, the hotel will be the largest international convention hotel in Europe, with 1,073 guest rooms. The hotel's fitness center also will be completely upgraded.
The company has taken over management of the 163-room Hilton Hotel at Green Park, which will undergo a major renovation.
Construction is under way on the new 355-room GWR Hilton Paddington, set for completion in late 2000. The luxury hotel will feature extensive meeting facilities.
Finally, the Hilton on Trafalgar Square, previously earmarked as a Stakis property, will now be managed by Hilton International. The new 131-room hotel will open in the fall of 2000.
This brings the total number of Hilton hotels in London to 17, and total guest rooms to 5,752.
Next month, the exclusive Casa de Campo Resort in La Romana, Dominican Republic, which has been closed since Hurricane Georges, will reopen after a $24 million renovation. The 300-room resort will offer a full-service business center and a new safari-themed restaurant. Guests will be able to golf on the Pete Dyedesigned courses and visit the Altos de Chavon artists' village. American Eagle flies to the resort's own airport.
Hilton Boston Logan Airport The Hilton Boston Logan Airport, with 600 guest rooms--and space to expand by another 300 rooms--recently opened, almost three months ahead of schedule. The $100 million hotel offers a quiet respite (No, I really mean it!) in the middle of the seventh busiest international gateway to the United States. All guest rooms have extra-large windows with soundproof glass and casings, which provide spectacular views of Boston's skyline, harbor, and airport without its noise. Rooms feature dual-line phones with voice mail, data ports with high-speed Internet access, and conference call capabilities. The top floor of the hotel is Hilton's 75-room Executive Level.
The grand and junior ballrooms share a reception area covered by the hotel's sweeping 65-foot skylight, which also soars above the spacious lobby. All 30,000 square feet of meeting space is on one level, and many meeting rooms feature city views. An on-site conference manager is available, as is a fully equipped business center and a 6,600-square-foot European-style spa and fitness center.
Best of all, the hotel is a short walk via skybridge (with moveable walkway) from terminals A and E (the international hub). "Zip in" check-in means guests with reserved rooms board a private van at the arrival gate, present their credit cards during the five-minute ride to the hotel, and receive their room keys upon stepping off the van.