5 things to know: 29 May 2019
5 things to know: 29 May 2019
29 MAY 2019 8:42 AM

From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:

  • Four Seasons appoints president and CEO
  • Wynn Resorts won’t appeal gaming commission decision
  • New hotels highlight two Boston districts
  • Tourists turned away by strike at Paris Louvre
  • Ohio hotels join fight against opioid crisis

Four Seasons appoints president and CEO: John Davison, who had been serving as the company’s interim CEO since late 2018, has been appointed president and CEO at Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, according to a news release.

Davison has been with Four Seasons for 18 years, previously serving as chief financial officer.

Isadore Sharp, who founded Four Seasons in 1960 and serves as chairman of its board of directors, said in a statement he is “extremely pleased” with Davison’s appointment. “Since John assumed the interim role, Four Seasons has earned record financial results. But just as importantly, over the years he has proven his dedication to advancing the vision and values of our company, earning the trust and respect of the entire board and management team as well as his colleagues throughout the world,” he said.

Davison said in the news release that the company is “poised to capitalize on the many opportunities we see in the global market, while remaining true to our world renowned culture and the exacting standards of excellence that have come to define Four Seasons the world over.”

Wynn Resorts won’t appeal gaming commission decision: In a statement issued Tuesday, Wynn Resorts’ board of directors said it will not appeal, though it disagrees with, a decision by Massachusetts regulators that CEO Matt Maddox violated company policy in addressing sexual-misconduct allegations against former chief executive Steve Wynn in 2018.

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission ruled that Wynn Resorts executives, under Maddox, had “run a sophisticated cover-up to protect Mr. Wynn from allegations by employees that he had engaged in sexual misconduct,” The Wall Street Journal reports.

The commission imposed a $35 million fine on the company, and a separate $500,000 fine on Maddox, which Wynn’s board says it paid. Wynn Resorts faced a deadline of Friday to appeal the decision.

“The board of directors disagrees with a number of the commission’s comments and conclusions regarding Matt (Maddox), and believes they are not supported by the evidence,” the board said in a statement in the release. “Therefore, we would support his decision to exercise his rights and appeal the fine imposed upon him, and believe he would rightly prevail in his appeal. However, that appeal would delay the final conclusion of this matter, and therefore we appreciate Matt’s decision to forego an appeal in order to allow closure for the company.”

New hotels highlight two Boston districts: New developments, particularly in the city’s Seaport District and South End neighborhood, are adding rooms inventory to the Boston hotel market, which boasts room rates and occupancy that are higher than the national average, writes Hotel News Now contributor Danny King.

Highlighting this hotel development in Boston’s Seaport are Hilton’s dual-branded Hampton Inn/Homewood Suites and a 294-room Hyatt Place set to open next year, and the 1,055-room Omni Seaport, set to be the state’s fourth-largest hotel when it opens in 2021. Recent openings in South End Boston include the 205-room AC Hotel Boston Downtown and the millennials-focused Revolution Hotel, which repurposes a former YMCA and hostel.

Tourists turned away by worker strike at Paris Louvre: Security and reception staff at the Louvre in Paris went on strike this week, citing “unprecedented deterioration of conditions” due to overcrowding at the museum, NPR reports. As a result, “hordes of tourists” were left “outside amid its famous glass pyramids,” according to the news agency.

The museum reported a 25% year-over-year increase in visitors in 2018, to a record 10.2 million, which has led to a situation that is “untenable,” according to the Sud Culture Solidaires Union, which represents the striking workers.

“The Louvre is suffocating,” the union said in a statement. “While the public has increased by more than 20% since 2009, the palace has not grown.”

Ohio hotels join fight against opioid crisis: Four hotels in the city of Green, Ohio, will install naloxone kits behind their front desks and train staff to administer them in the event of an opioid overdose on property, The Akron Beacon-Journal reports.

The effort, led by city government and a nonprofit organization, follows the overdose of a 16-year-old boy at a Green hotel three years ago that garnered national attention, the newspaper reports. The program is considered the first of its kind in Ohio, and city officials said they hope it catches on elsewhere.

The opioid crisis in Ohio has swelled in recent years, with a study showing that as much as a quarter of opioid overdoses involve transients who are staying at hotels or stopping at businesses along Interstate 77, according to The Beacon-Journal.

The participating hotels–a Super 8, a Cambria Suites, Steve’s Motel and a Hilton Garden Inn—represent about half of the city’s hotel inventory.

“It’s about saving lives,” said Shawn Danko, GM of the Cambria, who welcomed the program, including upcoming staff training. “If we have an opportunity to save one person, I would love to have that chance to save that one person.”

Compiled by Robert McCune.

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