Welcome to the latest feature in our hospitality leadership series! As the Sonesta portfolio has grown, we have welcomed new leaders and added new roles to help take us into our next chapter as one of the nation’s largest hotel brands.
This past April, Brian Quinn joined #TeamSonesta as Chief Development Officer to lead franchise growth effort. He brings more than 20 years of senior development and sales management experience to the Sonesta team, including nearly three years as Chief Franchise Sales Officer at Red Lion. A member of United States Travel and Tourism Advisory Board, Brian is a frequent speaker and commentator at leading hotel industry conferences and in leading lodging trade publications.
Sonesta, now with 15 diversified brands, more than 1,200 locations, and 100,000 plus guest rooms, continues to grow. As such, Brian has recently expanded the franchise and development team to include the following hospitality leaders. Our franchise team is focused on being Game Changers with our approach to franchising and beyond.
- Mike Castro joins as a Senior Vice President of Select Service Brands (SSB). Castro comes to Sonesta with extensive experience in both franchise sales and hotel operations. Having spent much of his career at RLH Corporation, Mike’s familiarity with the brand is a welcome and powerful advantage.
- Keith Biumi joins as a Senior Vice President of Upscale Brands (USB). Biumi began his career in hospitality operations and sales and marketing identifying promising B2B opportunities, an experience to which he believes established the foundation for his successful tenure in development in hospitality that has taken him from IHG, Choice Hotels, Marriott, and now Sonesta.
- Chris Leiser joins as a Regional Vice President of USB. Leiser is adept at working with Full-Service, Upper Scale Brands, previously at Wyndham Hotels Group and Choice Hotels International. Chris is bringing well-rounded experience to his new position.
- Ahmer Naushad joins as a Vice President of Analytics and Administration. Naushad is a seasoned industry professional, holding diverse, global positions in operations, strategy, investment, and asset management for a range of hospitality and real estate organizations such as Gencom, Miral Asset Management, and Majjd Al Futtaim Properties.
- Mike Higgins joins as a Regional Vice President of USB. Higgins has comprehensive experience working across a broad spectrum of property types and executing strategic development plans for franchise and management growth, proven through his prior positions at IHG, Choice, and Domio.
Our franchise team was happy to gather again in person at the AAHOA annual convention in Dallas, sharing our vision for the future and paving the way for ongoing growth.
To learn more about our growth and Game Changing approach, be sure to keep an eye on our news page.