Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide has announced the appointment of Michael Wale as president of its Europe, Africa and Middle East (EAME) region.
He replaces Roeland Vos, who has been with the company for 31 years and will take on a consulting role with the company, from 1 June 2013.
Wale began his career with Starwood as a graduate trainee in 1978 at what was then ITT Sheraton. In his most recent role, he was responsible for managing Starwood's operations in Western Europe, leading 54 hotels across eight brands in 13 countries.
Previously, Wale was senior vice-president global operations for Le Méridien, vice-president area director for Starwood Hotels & Resorts, and general manager of several hotels including the Sheraton Park Tower Knightsbridge and the Sheraton Grand Hotel Edinburgh. He also helped create Vita Futura, a graduate training programme which began in the EAME region and has gone on to shape the careers of many leaders throughout Starwood.
Frits van Paasschen, president and chief executive of Starwood, said he grateful for Vos's many outstanding contributions to the company. "One of the most respected operators in the industry, Roeland has overseen Starwood's growth across a diverse region, and during his 12-year tenure leading EAME, we've nearly doubled our hotel footprint in the region and accelerated our business in key fast-growing markets," he explained.
van Paasschen added that Wales's "combination of strategic vision, management experience, relationships with associates and customers, and a global sensibility" made him the ideal person to fill the position.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide currently has 1,134 properties across nine brands - St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, W, Westin, Le Méridien, Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton, Aloft, and ElementSM - in nearly 100 countries.