InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has appointed Julienne Smith as senior vice president, Development in the Americas region.
In the role, Ms Smith will lead a team responsible for increasing IHG’s presence in the US, 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 and Asset Management team, which is focused on growing and enhancing IHG’s relationship with owners and their hotels.
Through direct and focused engagement with current and potential IHG owners, Ms Smith and her team will drive new management and franchise agreements, as well as the renewal of existing agreements, to enhance value for owners and achieve IHG’s distribution and system size goals.
She is based at IHG’s Americas headquarters in Atlanta.
Joel Eisemann, chief development officer, Americas, said: “During her years in the industry, Julienne has built strong relationships based on establishing trust and delivering successful results.
“We are extremely pleased to welcome her to IHG. Julienne’s demonstrated performance leading a hotel development team will be a tremendous asset to our company.”
Ms Smith commented: “I am excited to join IHG, where there is such a strong opportunity for growth across the company’s entire brand portfolio.
“I am looking forward to being part of a team of dynamic leaders, who are committed to working with passionate and dedicated owners.”
Ms 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.
She earned her bachelor’s degree from Boston University and is active with several industry organisations, including the American Hotel and Lodging Association (AH&LA)’s Women in Lodging, the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), the Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) and the Urban Land Institute (ULI).
Ms Smith also sits on the board of Chicago-based nonprofit organisation Kaleidoscope.