Guy Hutchinson replaces Kaddouri as Rotana COO

Hilton recruit fills vacancy after Dubai based group appoints new CEO

Guy Hutchinson, Rotana's new chief operating officer.
Guy Hutchinson, Rotana's new chief operating officer.

Ex-Hilton vice president Guy Hutchinson has been appointed to replace Omer Kaddouri as COO of the Dubai-based Rotana Hotels.

The appointment comes after Kaddouri was chosen to replace the company's CEO, Selim El Zyr, who stepped down on January 1, 2014 with El Zyr continuing to sit on the board of the company in a consultancy role.

Commenting on his new role Hutchinson said: “[Taking on the role] was probably the hardest decision I’ve ever made. I was with Hilton for ten years but you’re never going to be able to shape the future of that company, you’re always going to be in the corporate space. One of the reasons I left the Hilton is that it in a multinational company you lose the buzz that got you into the business in the first place, and I missed that.

“Rotana is really involved with their owners, really involved with their guests, they’ve really got their fingers in the business. Even if the company grows it won’t lose these values. The worst thing that could happen is that in five or six years the Rotana is unrecognisable from the Marriott, or the Hilton. That would be our biggest mistake.”

Hutchinson, who has moved from his role as vice president of operations for Hilton India, brings strong experience of expansion to the role, having worked across a range of markets including Japan, Australia, China and India.

The new appointment came into motion eight months ago when Hutchinson met Selim El Zyr for the first time. An industry veteran, EL Zyr stepped down from his role as president & CEO of Rotana in December 2013, handing over leadership to Omer Kaddouri to take forward the company’s plans expand its portfolio to 100 hotels by 2020.

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