* CHANGING FACES Mike Mason has been promoted to vice president of sales and marketing for Opryland Hotel Florida, scheduled to open in February 2002. Mason was previously director of sales for El Conquistador Resort and Country Club in Puerto Rico. Also at Opryland Hotel Florida, John P. Caparella Jr. has been appointed senior vice president and general manager. Caparella has served as executive vice president, planning, development, and administration, and president of PlanetHollywood.com for Planet Hollywood International Inc. in Orlando since September 1997.
At Hilton Hotels Corporation, in the Chicago office, Rachael Martinez has been named director of sales, worldwide accounts, managing corporate and association accounts in the Midwest, including Kansas City and Indianapolis.
Christine Pennel-Jones has been named director of national accounts for the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel, which will open in February. Pennel-Jones was senior sales manager for the Marriott O'Hare in Chicago; she will work with associations in the Midwest, Northeast, and West Coast.
Laura Walker has joined Boca Resorts Inc. as sales manager. She is responsible for meetings of 40 rooms or fewer for the Registry Resort and the Edgewater Beach Hotel in Naples, Fla. Walker was previously sales manager for corporate and association groups at the Radisson Beach Suite Resort in Marco Island, Fla.
Jaralea Oulliber has been named executive meeting manager at Sawgrass Marriott Resort, located between Jacksonville and St. Augustine in Florida. Most recently, Oulliber was front desk manager at the same property.
The Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers has appointed Mark D. Tunney director of sales and marketing. Before joining the Sheraton Chicago, Tunney was vice president of sales for SeminarSource.com, a start-up company headquartered in San Diego, Calif.
Michael Valentino has been named national sales manager, responsible for the Northeast region, at the Arizona Biltmore Resort & Spa in Phoenix. Valentino was formerly director of Northeast sales at the Wigwam Resort in Litchfield Park, Ariz. Also at the Biltmore, Charlotte Steele has been named director of Biltmore Destination Services, the in-house destination management division. Formerly, Steele was operations director for Mountain River Adventures in Kernville, Calif.
The Pointe South Mountain Resort in Phoenix has named Andre Fournier as director of sales and marketing and Dan Sierka as director of group sales. Fournier returns to Arizona from his most recent Destination Hotels & Resorts post as director of marketing for the Vail Cascade Resort in Colorado. Most recently, Sierka was the associate director of sales at The Boulders Resort in Carefree, Ariz.
Deborah Donaghey has been appointed national sales manager, responsible for California and Texas, at Loews Santa Monica Hotel, and Steven Boswell has been promoted to director of sales. Donaghey was formerly cluster director of sales and marketing for Marriott Hotels and Resorts in Rochester, NY. Before coming to Loews, Boswell held management positions at the Starwood Hotels & Resorts.
Dieter F. Schneider has been named director of destination services at The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel, in Dana Point, Calif. Schneider joins The Ritz-Carlton from PRA Destination Management Inc., where he directed the operations of the Orange County and Los Angeles offices.
* GOING PLACES The Spa at The Hotel Hershey is scheduled to open this month in the town built on chocolate. The 17,000-square-foot spa will encompass three floors between the west wing and the original hotel. Don't miss the chocolate fondue wrap or the whipped cocoa bath. The 210-room Hotel Hershey offers 23,500 square feet of meeting space, and is two hours from Philadelphia, two-and-a-half hours from Washington, D.C., and a 12-minute drive from Harrisburg International Airport.
La Quinta Resort & Club in La Quinta, Calif., recently opened The Cosgrove Clinic, where guests can undergo a variety of diagnostic tests from nutritional assessments, to biological age assessments, to measuring hormone and stress levels. At the end of an assessment, the guest receives a personal prescriptive strategy for optimizing his or her health. La Quinta Resort offers 640 rooms, more than 66,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor function space, and the 23,000-square-foot Spa La Quinta.
Destination Hotels & Resorts is the new management company of the Pointe South Mountain Resort (formerly the Pointe Hilton South Mountain Resort) in Phoenix. The 640-suite resort has embarked on a number of embellishment projects, including construction of an elaborate public promenade and a 2,000-square-foot suite, the West Pointe Penthouse. In addition, all guest rooms will be renovated by next summer. Pointe South Mountain offers 95,000 square feet of meeting space, including the 20,000-square-foot Grande Ballroom and the 20,000-square-foot Exhibit Pavilion, and the 38,000-square-foot Phanton Horse Spa & Fitness Center.
Hyatt has been selected to manage the new $217 million headquarters hotel across the street from the Colorado Convention Center. The 1,100-room hotel will serve the center, which is expanding to 600,000 square feet of contiguous exhibit space. The Hyatt at the Colorado Convention Center will have a 30,000-square-foot ballroom, a 15,000-square-foot junior ballroom, and 25,000 square feet of additional meeting space. It is projected to open in September 2003.
Pala Mesa Resort in north San Diego County, Calif., has put the finishing touches on a renovation of all 133 guest rooms, meeting space, and public areas in a romantic Spanish Mission of Old California motif. The resort offers 17,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor meeting space, including a 3,685-square-foot ballroom. Also on property is an 18-hole championship golf course, four lighted tennis courts, swimming pool, spa, and exercise room.
The Garden of the Gods Club, at the foot of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado Springs, Colo., is now under the management of Destination Hotels & Resorts. Long a private club, set on a mesa offering remarkable views of the red rock spires that comprise Garden of the Gods Park, the facility is now actively courting corporate group business. It offers 120 rooms, suites, and cottages, a variety of meeting rooms, fitness facilities, and gourmet dining. The championship 27-hole Kissing Camels Golf Course is part of the club complex.
* BEYOND BORDERS The Ritz-Carlton, Toronto Hotel and Residences will open in 2003 as Canada's tallest residential building, at 60 stories. The 228-room hotel will be part of a skyscraper that also houses corporate suites and private residences. The first seven floors will feature the lobby, ballroom, meeting space, and restaurants, while a luxury spa and fitness center will take up the 36th and 37th floors.
The Presidente Inter-Continental Monterrey, Mexico, has opened with 305 rooms in the Valle business district. The hotel offers eight banquet rooms that hold up to 800 attendees, a fitness center, Inter-Continental Club floors, and 14 Business Rooms with fax, printer, and copier.
Two luxurious Orient-Express properties in Africa, the 226-room Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town and the 120-room Westcliff Hotel in Johannesburg, recently unveiled new business wings. Guests staying in these wings will have access to a complete range of executive services plus "IT butlers," information technology experts on hand 24 hours a day. Business lounges, multilingual administrative assistance, and improved in-room technology are also features of the new business wings.
Sofitel Hotels and Resorts has opened the Sofitel Royal Angkor, near one of Asia's most significant cultural sites, the Angkor Wat archaeological complex in Cambodia. The 175-room hotel features a Grand Ballroom divisible in half, a library, a technologically advanced business center, a free-form outdoor pool, and the luxury Angkor Spa.
Enchantment Resort, Sedona It's easy to understand why Sedona's red rock canyons were considered sacred ground by many Native American tribes. The towering, jagged terra- cotta outcroppings, spiked with patches of green, pulsate against the bright blue Arizona sky. This is where you'll find Enchantment Resort, tucked into Boynton Canyon, one of Sedona's most beautiful spots. It's a two-hour drive north of Phoenix, but it feels like you've stepped back in time.
The adobe buildings that make up Enchantment's 222 casitas resemble traditional Indian dwellings. But inside, there's nothing primitive about the skylit bathrooms, wood-beamed ceilings, and kiva fireplaces in many of the guest rooms. In the morning, fresh-squeezed orange juice and a newspaper are delivered to every guest.
Opened in 1999, The Village meeting complex includes a 5,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art meeting room divisible into three; three Patio Homes for receptions or breakouts; and two outdoor terraces.
On-site recreation includes four swimming pools and Jacuzzis, a croquet court and putting green, seven tennis courts, hiking trails, and a spa and fitness center with not only 19 inside treatment rooms and a full fitness facility but also four Native American-styled structures for outdoor massages, a lap pool and a "watsu" massage pool, 16 luxury guest casitas, a restaurant, and even a skylit crystal grotto that reflects Sedona's New Age sensibilities.
Two 18-hole golf courses are located nearby: the Sedona Golf Resort course and the Oak Creek Country Club course.