The Ritz-Carlton Amman Announces Opening Management Team

The Ritz-Carlton, Amman, Hotel & Residences, opening on May 1, 2022, announced its management team, led by General Manager Tareq Derbas.

Derbas is continuing the legacy of the late chairman of Al Eqbal Real Estate Development and Hotels, Tawfiq Fakhouri, whose vision brought The Ritz-Carlton to Amman. Derbas brings with him over 27 years of luxury hotel management experience. Before joining The Ritz-Carlton, Amman team, he served as GM of The Ritz-Carlton, Dubai International Financial Centre. He has also led the development of other iconic properties including Burj Al Arab Dubai, Four Seasons Amman and Four Seasons Riyadh.

Director of Residences Behiye Salk arrives to Amman from Dubai, where she served as hotel manager during the successful opening of Caesars Palace, Caesars Resort and Caesars Residences. She launched her 30-year career with the Swissôtel chain, where she served as director of housekeeping at several properties, including at the Watergate in Washington, D.C. Salk and Derbas joined forces in 2002 as part of the Four Seasons Amman opening team. She previously held several managerial roles at Jumeirah Hotels & Resorts and was the GM of both The House Hotel Collection Istanbul and Wellborn Luxury Hotel, Kocaeli, in Turkey.

Executive Chef Joergen Sodemann has over 20 years of experience in fine dining. His arrival at The Ritz-Carlton Amman marks his return to the Ritz-Carlton brand. It was at The Ritz-Carlton, in Berlin, that he was first promoted to executive chef before moving to Muscat to help open the new Al Bustan Palace, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel. Thus began his global career with Marriott International, which most recently took him to The Tokyo EDITION, where he oversaw a range of restaurants, including the Jade Room and Garden Terrace, which he ran alongside two-Michelin-starred Chef Consultant Tom Aikens, with whom Sodemann previously worked during the launch of The Abu Dhabi EDITION.

The hotel’s new director of food and beverage, Emmanuel Nelo, has accrued 15 years of dedicated service to the Ritz-Carlton brand. He has managed the dining and banquet experiences of the chain’s exotic destinations, including Bali, Jakarta, Aruba, Santiago, Cancun, and even Muscat, where he worked with Sodemann at Al Bustan Palace.

Director of sales and marketing, Antoine Hobeika, arrives from Paris, where he previously served as Marriott International’s cluster director of sales. Prior to that, he was at the Dorchester Collection hotel, Le Richemond, Geneva. He also played a key role in the opening of the Jumeirah Messilah Beach Hotel & Spa in the UAE. Hobeika has also managed business development and sales for several Hilton hotels and Waldorf Astoria in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and France. His adept move into sales and marketing first took place during his tenure at Disneyland Resort Paris.

Abdelaziz Salhab, director of finance, has been loyal to Marriott International for 20 years, serving as the Levant area director of finances and overseeing finances for the group’s hotels in Jordan and the Levant region, with rich experience at the Sheraton Amman Al Nabil Hotel.

The most recent recruit, director of revenue, Rajvi Damur, is a tech-savvy strategist who is making his way to Amman from his current position at The Ritz-Carlton, Bahrain. Damurearned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in International Hotel Management from Vatel while working for Marriott International properties in Mauritius.

Local additions to the property’s management team include Majd Haddad, director of human resources, who comes from W Amman. She began her career in the hospitality sector at Le Meridien Amman, where she was eventually promoted to assistant human resources manager. As director of engineering, Hazem Albedawi will ensure everything runs smoothly at the property. His industry experience includes key positions at The Boulevard Arjaan by Rotana, Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea, and the Grand Hyatt Amman Hotel.

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