Walters has joined the hotel - set to under-go a soft opening in July prior to a full launch in September - from the InterContinental hotel in Sydney, where he was general manager for five years. He previously spent eight years with the Langham Hospitality Group, including three years as general manager of the Langham London.
Around £70m is currently being spent on transforming what was previously the 373-bedroom Hotel Russell in Bloomsbury into the Principal London. Interior designs for the bedrooms and public spaces have been created by Tara Bernerd & Partners, while Russell Sage has conceived the restaurants and the Gorgeous Group has designed the bar.
A neighbourhood-style restaurant will be operated by a soon-to-be announced third party partner, while Burr & Co will open as a coffee house by day and a wine bar at night. The hotel will also feature a ballroom and eight meeting spaces.
Walters said: "The Principal London is one of the last classic grande dame hotels to be brought magnificently back to life, just as Bloomsbury is one of the forgotten neighbourhoods of London. I am sure the multi-million pound refurbishment will put the hotel and the area firmly back on the map."
Walters will be joined at the hotel by Paula McColgan as director of sales and marketing. McColgan was previously involved in relaunching the Lanesborough hotel following its 18-month refurbishment, having earlier worked for Mandarin Oriental.
Jutta Asta has been appointed from the Dorchester Collection as executive housekeeper. Her earlier experience includes working at the Bulgari hotel and Claridge's in London, as well as the Hotel Adlon in Berlin.
Other key members of the senior management team include Roger Olsson as executive chef, from the Dorchester hotel; Richard Stockton as finance director from the Lanesborough; Melanie Price as people development director (ex-Dorchester Collection); Claire O'Reilly as hotel manager (ex-Doyle Collection and Soho House New York); Amrita Makkar as director of revenue (ex-Carlson Rezidor); and Jeff Hyatt as director of engineering (ex-Bulgari).
Starwood Capital announced in September 2016 the details of its new Principal lifestyle brand across major UK cities. Properties have already launched in Manchester, York and Edinburgh to great acclaim, with future openings set for Glasgow, Leeds, Cardiff and Liverpool.
The Principal hotel brand sits alongside the De Vere collection of event focused properties in primarily rural locations under the Principal Hotel Company.
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