These are this year's best hotels and resorts in Canada—as voted by readers by CONDÉ NAST TRAVELLER.
PEOPLE Update September 10, 2019
Steve Giblin moves from hotels to cannabis. Ron Pellerine moves to MTCC. Graham Twomey and Heidi Pawlyshyn have new jobs. Julienne Smith now Radisson EVP Development. New hires at InterContintal Montreal. New faces at Centennial College.
Steve Giblin moved from the hotel business to the cannabis industry when he was appointed to the board of directors of TransCanna Holdings Inc. Now he has been named president & CEO and will also continue as an executive director.
Giblin is an accomplished leader in the Global hospitality, technology and real estate industries with a demonstrated track record of value creation. He has strong C suite relationships with Marriott, Hilton, and Radisson brands and he managed the SilverBirch and Delta hotel real estate portfolios for the British Columbia Investment Management Corporation. As CEO of SilverBirch, he grew revenues from $280 million up to $500 million and increased the portfolio value over 50 per cent. He has worked closely with other companies including established brands such as Bentall Kennedy, Great West Life and general contractors, Ellis Don, PCL and Bird.
Ron Pellerine has joined the team at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (MTCC) as its new general manager. The current Shangri-La Hotel, Toronto general manager will officially join the MTCC team on September 16. With more than 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry, Pellerine has worked internationally in the U.S., Europe and Asia, and brings extensive experience in all aspects of facility operations. Prior to the Shangri-La Hotel, Toronto, he held the position of general manager at the Langham Boston and the Chelsea Hotel in Toronto, where he oversaw Canada’s largest hotel.
Graham Twomey has joined CLIQUE Hotels & Resorts as its director of marketing and business development. Twomey’s forte is resort and hotel photography. Capturing the beauty and character of a property is mandatory and his imagery reflects the mastery of his skills. He has over 15 years of resort content creation and over 25 years in the photography and film industry. Twomey’s talents have taken a few different paths over the years. He has a book and video marketed to tourists in Banff National Park called ‘Calgary to Lake Louise a Photo/Video Journey’. His work has been featured in such periodicals as National Geographic, Smithsonian, The Wall Street Journal and many more.
Heidi Pawlyshyn is now vice president, sales and marketing, for Palm Holdings. Pawlyshyn has 20 years of experience in hotel sales and marketing. She comes to her new position from Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel, where she was director of sales and marketing for the largest conference hotel in Canada for almost two years. Prior to that, she spent more than four years as director of sales and marketing at Delta Hotels by Marriott Toronto Airport and Conference Centre during the rebranding of the hotel from the International Plaza to Delta. She has also held director of sales and marketing positions at Metropolitan Hotels and Great Wolf Lodge, Niagara Falls.
IHG has appointed Julienne Smith as senior vice-president, development in the Americas region. In this role, Smith will lead a team responsible for increasing IHG’s presence in the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean for new-builds and conversions to the Crowne Plaza, Hotel Indigo and EVEN Hotels brands. She will also lead the Transactions & Asset Management team, which is focused on growing and enhancing IHG’s relationship with owners and their hotels. Smith brings more than 17 years of development experience to IHG, previously serving in leadership roles at Hyatt Hotels Corporation after starting her career at Marriott International. Most recently, she was senior vice-president, development and owner relations at Hyatt, where she primarily oversaw the growth of Hyatt’s select service hotel brands and grew the company’s footprint through franchise and management contracts.
There have been three new hires at InterContinental Montréal recently.
Christian Lefebvre joined the InterContinental Montréal as director of finance effective May 13th2019. Lefebvre brings over 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry. He began his career at the Quality Hotel Ottawa, occupying multiple roles within the 211 room hotel. Over the years, he has held the positions of general manager and financial controller for hotels in the Greater Montréal Area. In 2009, Christian was appointed financial controller at the iconic Montréal Marriott Château Champlain, where he led the hotel accounting and finance team for 10 years.
Jay Pujol became director of sales and marketing at the InterContinental Montréal effective March 4th2019. With more than 20 years of experience in hospitality, Pujol started at the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth as a receptionist. Throughout the years, he has held various operation positions in Montréal, Western Canada (Vancouver and Whistler), before settling in Montréal, he started his sales career with the SpringHill Suites by Marriott team. His career also includes six years at the Westin Montréal as a senior sales manager, followed by the position of director of sales and marketing at the Courtyard by Marriott in 2016. Then, he was nominated as director of sales and Marketing at AC Marriott Montréal for the hotel’s opening.
Sébastien Gagné became general manager of InterContinental Montréal effective 3rd December 2018. With more than 20 years of experience in the hotel industry, Gagné began his career at the Delta Montréal as a Maître d’Hôtel and climbed the ranks for seven years, moving from director of food and beverage to director of human resources. He was then named director of human resources at the W Montréal hotel, where he distinguished himself and became the director of operations. In 2007, W Montréal was named “the best Starwood hotel in North America” for its financial results and guest experience. In 2009, he became director of experience at the InterContinental Montréal. The repositioning of the hotel following renovations was a success and the establishment has seen many more successes since then.
Friends and colleagues bade farewell to Dr. Gabor Forgacs (centre) on his retirement from Ryerson’s Ted Rogers School of Hospitality and Tourism Management. “We all will miss you Gabor Forgacs Dr! Happy retirement!” said Ryerson HTM director, Dr. Frédéric Dimanche, in a tweet.
Centennial College has added two more exceptional leaders to its team.
Lilian Cardoso joins Centennial College School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts as executive chef, Restaurants and Events. She comes most recently from her executive culinary roles at Toronto’s Zebu Steak + Bar and Los Colibris. Prior to working in Toronto, she spent many years leading kitchens in Montréal and Ottawa at such renowned establishments as Maison Christian Faure, Europea Relais & Chatêau and Mambo Restaurant. Cardoso holds a Master’s degree in cellular biology and a Bachelor’s degree in biology, both from the State University of Campinas in Brazil. She also studied culinary techniques at SENAC in Brazil and culinary arts at École de Cuisine Alain Ducasse. She holds a diploma in culinary and pastry arts from Le Cordon Bleu, as well as her Red Seal designation.
Josh Fraser joins Centennial College School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts as manager of strategic operations. Prior to joining the College Fraser was chief operating officer at Vintage Hospitality in the Okanagan region of B.C. He has held senior food and beverage leadership positions in hotels, casinos, restaurants, golf clubs, spas, wineries and resorts around the world including New Zealand, Australia, Thailand and across Canada. Fraser holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts from York University an Advanced Diploma from the International Sommelier Guild and his Certification from the Court of Master Sommeliers.