Belmond has announced the appointment of David Grossniklaus as Senior Director of Development, Middle East, Africa and India, effective December 1, 2016.
Based in Belmond’s newly-opened development office in the heart of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Grossniklaus will focus on growing Belmond’s footprint across the region with new hotel developments and conversion opportunities.
Kenneth Hatton, Senior Vice President, Global Development, Belmond, said, “David joins Belmond at an exciting time of growth as we move forward with the strategic plan to double the company’s footprint by 2020. We are keen to pursue acquisition and management opportunities across the Middle East and the Indian Ocean. The experience and expertise that David brings to the role will be valuable assets to this endeavour and a tremendous springboard for the launch of our first office in the region.”
David Grossniklaus said of his appointment: “I am very pleased to be opening Belmond’s development office, contributing to the expansion of the Belmond brand in the Middle East, Indian Ocean, Africa and India. I believe Belmond is well recognised by both travellers and investors as the leading luxury owner and operator of hotels, trains, and cruises, and our future developments will continue to create memorable and unique travel experiences for our customers.”
With more than 16 years of hospitality industry experience, Grossniklaus joins Belmond from Starwood Hotels & Resorts, where he was Associate Director, Acquisitions and Development for the Middle East and Africa. During the course of his three years at Starwood, he closed a number of prominent deals across the GCC, Ethiopia, Lebanon and South Africa.
Having first worked with Belmond during an internship as eDistribution Manager in 2002, while studying at Ecole Hoteliere de Lausanne, Grossniklaus has since taken on roles with Deloitte/STR Global as well as Fairmont-Raffles Hotels International, working on new development for Swissotel.
Grossniklaus previously relocated to Dubai in 2008, when he joined Nakheel Hotels/Istithmar, a DP World entity, where he was actively involved in analyzing new acquisitions, joint-venture valuations, equity investments and existing assets performance.