HOK Names Galioto President … and More

News for the week of May 1, 2017

Boutique Design

HEADLINE ITEM
HOK has promoted Carl Galioto to president. Galioto, who joined the global design, architecture, engineering and planning firm in 2009, most recently served as managing principal for its New York and Philadelphia offices. He also serves on the firm’s board and leads its technical board, which includes HOK buildingSMART, a virtual design and construction initiative.

HIRINGS/PROMOTIONS/EXECUTIVE CHANGES
BLINK Design Group has named Rengy John and Clint Nagata (the firm’s founder and a 2006 Boutique 18 honoree) co-ceos. John joins the Bangkok-based luxury hospitality design firm after 14 years at Wilson Associates, where he most recently served as managing director of its 200-person team in Singapore and Shanghai.

Kalisher has promoted David Winton to president of the North Carolina-based hospitality art company. Winton had been the acting president since January and served as vice president, creative director prior to that. The Mississippi native joined Kalisher in 2008 as the company’s second employee, serving in the role of print production manager. Since then, the company—led by co-founders Helen and Jesse Kalisher—has grown from a staff of four to a 100-person team.

The Los Angeles office of international architecture/design firm Perkins+Will has appointed Yan Krymsky as design director. Krymsky—whose portfolio includes such projects as the UC San Diego Health Jacobs Medical Center in La Jolla, California; CJ Blossom Park in Seoul, South Korea; and the University of Utah Lassonde Studios in Salt Lake City, Utah—assumes the role that had been held by Nick Seierup. Following a sabbatical, Seierup will return to the practice as design principal.

sbe has hired Peter Chambers as chief information officer to oversee the lifestyle hospitality company’s info-tech strategy, operations and data security programs. He will be based in Miami. Prior to joining the Los Angeles-based company, Chambers was vice president of technology at Viceroy Hotel Group.

GRAFF, a Milwaukee-based manufacturer of kitchen and bath products, has hired Ryan Paul as regional sales manager for the western U.S. In addition to his 20-year-career in the luxury kitchen/bath industry, Paul serves as secretary of the Decorative Plumbing and Hardware Association and sits on the executive committee of its board.

Choice Hotels Intl. has appointed Eleonora Tarzibachi as head of brand development and management for Ascend Hotel Collection, a soft brand of independent boutique and historic hotels and resorts. Tarzibachi was previously Choice's senior director of international strategy and business performance.

OPENINGS/RENOVATIONS/BRAND NEWS
Ledunfly Hospitality, part of Dona Bertarelli’s family enterprise, has unveiled the name of its latest development project in the Bahamas’ Exuma district: Atabey. Built on private islands, the property is named after the Taino goddess known as the “mother of waters.” The luxury destination is under construction and slated for completion in 2020.

MANAGEMENT CONTRACTS/ACQUISITIONS
RLJ Lodging Trust and FelCor Lodging Trust Inc. have entered into a merger agreement under which Texas-based FelCor will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of RLJ, which is headquartered in Maryland. Post-merger, RLJ will have a total enterprise value of $7 billion, creating the largest pure-play public REIT dedicated to the ownership of focused-service and compact full-service hotels, and the combined company will have ownership interests in 160 properties. The Dallas Business Journal reports that the $1.18 billion all-stock transaction is expected to close by the end of the year.

BUSINESS BRIEFS
Galaxy Glass & Stone announced that Cooney Design Consultants LLC will be representing the company in the Chicago area and the rest of Illinois, along with Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin. Bridget Cooney, principal at Cooney Design Consultants, together with Tom Brassell of Brassell Design Consultants and Andrea Russell of ARA Design Collections LLC, will be responsible for developing relationships with architects and designers throughout the region, according to Galaxy.

AWARDS
The 266-key Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa in Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman, has been named Development of the Year for 2016 by Burba Hotel Network (BHN), host of the Caribbean Hotel & Resort Investment Summit (CHRIS). The announcement was made April 28 at the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel in Miami.