TORONTO—Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts has promoted Christopher Norton to the newly created role of EVP, global product and operations.
Effective April 1, 2014, the position includes responsibility for worldwide hotel operations, product, design, construction and procurement. Under Norton’s oversight, product and service delivery will be further integrated to increase opportunities for differentiation as Four Seasons extends its global leadership position.
The appointment builds on Norton’s extensive industry experience, including 25 years with Four Seasons, most recently serving as president hotel operations, Europe, Middle East and Africa, a role that included the operational oversight of all Four Seasons properties in the region.
“Chris is a visionary leader who has helped enhance the quality of our product across the region while staying true to the values that have been central to the company’s success,” said Allen Smith, president and CEO, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts.
In addition, Christian Clerc has been promoted from regional VP and general manager of Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris to SVP, hotel operations, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA).
In his new role based in Dubai, Clerc will lead hotel operations across EMEA and report to Norton, and support the company’s increased focus on product and service differentiation.
Born and educated in Switzerland and a graduate of the Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne in Switzerland, Clerc worked at a variety of hotels in destinations across Europe, including Rome and Paris, before joining Four Seasons Hotel Washington, DC in 2000. In 2003, he became general manager of Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita, Mexico and was promoted to regional vice president in 2006, a role that included regional responsibility for Latin America. Clerc also worked in senior operational roles in Chicago and Washington, DC before assuming the role of general manager of the iconicFour Seasons Hotel George V, Paris in 2013, while also overseeing properties in Geneva, Milan, Florence, Lisbon and Marrakech in his capacity as regional vice president.
Currently representing 30% of the existing portfolio of Four Seasons hotels and resorts, EMEA is a dynamic region poised for considerable growth, according to the brand. Expansion across the region will be marked by several openings scheduled for 2014 including Moscow, followed by Johannesburg, Dubai and Bahrain. Looking further ahead, projects at various stages of development across the region include Abu Dhabi, Kuwait, Madrid and two new Moroccan properties—Casablanca and Taghazhout Bay.
As he moves into his new role, Four Seasons veteran José Silva is promoted to regional vice president and general manager of Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris.