Miami-based Desires Hotels, the boutique division of Tecton Hospitality, is crossing borders into new markets as they tactically launch Desires Hotels International (DHI), in turn appointing Gary L. Sims executive vice president/partner of this new division.
The launch of DHI emphasizes expansion into Mexico and South America with projects in Cozumel, Mexico, and Medellin, Columbia. Across the Atlantic, a development on the Algarve in Portugal will be the first European outpost, and the Cape Verde Islands will take DHI to the west coast of Africa to a former Portuguese colony.
With the recent inclusion of two properties in Bermuda, DHI looks to expand this portfolio to an additional 15 managed properties by 2010.
"Over the course of the past year, the demand has increased exponentially to provide management services outside of the United States," says Raul Leal, president/partner of Tecton Hospitality/Desires Hotels. "Based on our success, hotel owners and developers understand that a partnership with us is financially rewarding. We are able to create a sustainable business model in the current economic climate, and exceed owner expectations when the economy is booming."
Many of the properties joining Desires Hotels International will join the Desires Hotels portfolio, recognized for delivering unexpected amenities in stylish settings. As a member of this modern boutique hotel collection, Desires Hotels maintains the owner’s vision while providing individualized strategies through sophisticated marketing techniques. Through a variety of strategic partnerships, and an innovative Web site and loyalty program, owners and developers are able to take advantage of the well-established benchmarks of other properties within the collection.
Gary L. Sims, who will take on the role of executive vice president/partner of Desires Hotels International, wields a proven track record in managing hotels and developing projects in Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, and the Middle East, and provides an expertise that matches the company’s latest global initiatives.
"The ability to expand in this current economy and focus on future growth and penetration into new markets is very enticing," Sims says. "I look forward to bringing my expertise to DHI to further develop an international base of clientele."
With 30 years of hospitality experience, Sims’ career is highlighted by his appointment as hotel general manager at the age of 24. Moving to Starwood Hotels and Resorts in 1996, he held senior positions in operations and development and served as area managing director for the Northeast region, participating in acquisitions and brand conversions.
In 2001, the multimillion dollar Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa hired Sims as GM, producing in excess of US$125 million in revenue-exceeding EBITDA by US$5 million in the first year of operation. In 2006, he was appointed President and CEO of Nikki Beach Hotels & Resorts and was responsible for development and operation of the brand worldwide. Sims is currently the president and managing partner of Asmayda Holding Group.