Belmond has announced the appointment of Xavier Lablaude as general manager of the Cadogan hotel in London's Chelsea.
Lablaude joins the 54-bedroom hotel from Belmond's Mount Nelson hotel in Cape Town, South Africa, where he worked for almost 10 years as general manager. He will take up his new role from tomorrow when the 54-bedroom property reopens.
He also previously worked as general manager – director of sales and marketing at Hôtel de la Cité in Carcassonne, France, and assistant general manager at Hawks Cay Resort in Florida.
The Cadogan reopened under Belmond management in February 2019, following a four-year, £28m renovation. Klaus Kabelitz was the opening general manager of the Sloane Street property, which dates to 1887, having returned to the UK from Geneva to oversee the launch five years ago. He left the property in February to join the relaunched Biltmore hotel in London's Mayfair.
Robert Koren, divisional senior vice president, Europe, Middle East & Africa, said: "Xavier is an intuitive, hands-on leader with a proven track-record running successful luxury hotel operations that put the guest experience front and centre. During his 10-year tenure, Mount Nelson has garnered growing international acclaim thanks, to a large extent, to Xavier's innate understanding of Belmond's strategic vision. We are delighted that Xavier will now lead Belmond's latest portfolio addition, located in the all-important flagship city of London, as the Cadogan and our company continue to reach new heights under the LVMH umbrella."
Belmond, which also operates sister property Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons in Great Milton, Oxfordshire, was sold to French luxury goods company LVMH for £2.5b a year ago.
Hugh Seaborn, chief executive of Cadogan which owns the property, said: "The Cadogan has a colourful history – and a wonderful future. Belmond has proven to be the perfect partner for us to preserve its unique heritage and character, while evolving into a true retreat for today's luxury traveller and ‘home from home' for locals. We are thrilled that Xavier will be bringing his expertise to bear at a significant moment in the hotel's history and we very much look forward to welcoming guests back on 1 August."