The Caterer

Willy Bauer steps down as chairman of AB Hotels

11 March 2016 by
Willy Bauer steps down as chairman of AB Hotels

Following more than 50 years in the hospitality industry, he has decided to reduce some of his business commitments, while continuing with his charity work and ongoing support of the Gold Service Scholarship, of which he was one of the founders.

Abraham Bejerano, owner of the AB Hotel, which also runs Sopwell House in St Albans and Crowne Plaza Resort Colchester - Five Lakes, said that Bauer has been "an inspirational and extremely valuable asset" to the group.

"The company has been fortunate enough to have benefitted greatly from his vast experience and knowledge over the years.

"His professional integrity, exceptionally high standards and passion for service have been integral in the success of the business and his involvement has been of huge benefit to both the company and staff alike."

Born in Germany, Bauer moved to the UK in 1962 to join the Grand Hotel Eastbourne, before moving to the Grand Metropolitan hotel in London.

Among his many achievements was the rescue of London's Hyde Park hotel in the 1970s. Appointed general manager of the ailing hotel aged just 38, Bauer transformed the fortunes of the property in five years to become Trust House Forte's flagship hotel.

He then went on to Grosvenor House before being appointed general manager and managing director of the Savoy hotel. During his eight-year tenure, he was described by the board as "having brought the Savoy back to past glory". In 1989, Bauer became chief executive of the Wentworth Group.

Bauer's services to the hospitality industry have been recognised by being awarded an OBE in the Queen's 2011 New Year's Honour's list and the Outstanding Contribution Award at the 2009 Hotel Cateys.

There is no plan to replace Bauer as chairman of AB Hotels.

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