Dubai-based luxury property developer and holding company Seven Tides has appointed the general manager and four senior executive committee members for its latest five-star hospitality venture, DUKES Dubai hotel and hotel apartment project.
Seasoned general manager, Mete Atakuman, will head up the team and brings more than 20 years’ industry experience to the role with emphasis on openings and acquisition.
An Australian citizen, Atakuman, has vast experience of Dubai-based brands, having previously worked with the Jumeirah Group to oversee the takeover of the Jumeirah Bodrum Palace, Turkey as well as managing several high profile pre-opening projects in China and Azerbaijan for the international luxury hotel chain.
“Mete has a proven operational and commercial track record when it comes to spearheading new hotel projects, and his experience of conveying luxury brand concepts will be instrumental to our success as we introduce this uniquely British brand to an expectant market in the region,” said Abdulla Bin Sulayem, CEO, Seven Tides, developer of DUKES Dubai.
Atakuman will lead a seasoned EXCOM team which includes Laetitia Pardo who joins DUKES Dubai as director of sales & marketing. A French national with hospitality industry experience on two continents, she will play a pivotal role in positioning DUKES in the region as well as ensuring a healthy market mix for the luxury property’s leisure, business and MICE segments.
A strong team leader with 17 years’ experience in both the hotel and serviced apartment sector, Pardo has worked for renowned hotel groups such as Atlantis The Palm, Hilton International and Sofitel, as well as iconic properties including The Savoy in London.
Former French naval officer, Richard Mazeau, takes on responsibility for DUKES Dubai’s recruitment strategy as the new director of human resources.
Previous experience includes Anantara Doha, where he oversaw recruitment from pre-opening, the opening of the Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, as well as managing HR and training for One&Only Resorts, Dubai.
The fourth new member of the executive team, director of engineering, Avnish Kumar, has been at the sharp end of the industry in the region for a decade as a pre-opening specialist, working with TIME Hotels, Mövenpick and The Address Hotels amongst others.
Rounding out the appointments list is Navin Shah, the hotel’s director of finance. A qualified chartered accountant with over 15 years’ experience.
He has held a number of executive director positions, and has worked on high profile brand and property launches for Zaya Hotel Management, The Address Hotels and Accor in the UAE, as well as for Millennium & Copthorne covering the Middle East and Africa.
“The success of DUKES Dubai in the UAE is contingent upon its leadership team and their ability to position the brand as a market leader and deliver its distinctly unique character in today’s extremely competitive marketplace,” added Bin Sulayem.
Centrally located on the trunk of Palm Jumeirah, just 10 minutes’ drive from Dubai Marina and Sheikh Zayed Road, and only 45 minutes from Dubai International Airport, DUKES Dubai hotel and hotel apartments is set to add a distinctly British flavour to the city’s luxury hospitality offering.
The 273-room hotel and 227 hotel apartments will offer world-class leisure, conference and entertainment facilities including a stunning private beach, indoor pool, outdoor infinity pool and state-of-the-art gym, along with five food and beverage outlets.