The general manager of the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park in London is leaving today after working at the five-star hotel for just over two years.
Christoph Mares, who has worked at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group since 2000 holding roles in Munich, Paris and London, is joining Dubai-based Emaar Hotels and Resorts as chief operating officer on 14 July.
German-born Mares, who has previous experience in the Middle East, said that when the opportunity came up for him to join the group, a joint venture with fashion house Giorgio Armani, he "couldn't turn it down".
"I will be returning to Dubai and learn new skills through asset management and building the brand up. These points combined made me take the position," he said.
"But London has always been good to me, and one day I'll be back."
The first Armani/Emaar hotel is destined to be in the Burj Dubai and the company is also launching a new design-led brand The Address, a five-star brand of hotels and resorts.
The company plans to roll the Address brand out later this year with the opening of its flagship hotels in Downtown Burj Dubai and another property in Dubai Marina.
By Gemma Sharkey