Hilton has announced the appointment of Guy Hutchinson as president for its Middle East and Africa region. Hutchinson is expected to commence in the new role in early 2024.
Currently, Hutchinson serves as the president and CEO of Abu Dhabi-based hotel management company Rotana, having worked there for nearly a decade.
His previous experience includes 16 years at Hilton, spanning across the Middle East, Europe, Japan, China, Australia, and India, where he served as vice president of Operations until 2014.
His latest appointment at Hilton comes a few months after the sudden passing of Jochem-Jan Sleiffer (widely known by his initials JJ) in April 2023. JJ had worked at Hilton for over 33 years rising to the position of president of the Middle East, Africa and Türkiye at the time of his demise.
Hutchinson will be based at Hilton’s Regional Office in Dubai and report to Simon Vincent CBE, EVP and president for Europe, Middle East and Africa at Hilton.
Vincent said, “Finding the right individual to propel our Middle East and Africa region forward has been of the utmost importance as we considered this pivotal leadership position. Guy brings regional operations expertise, genuine passion for hospitality, and a leadership style aligned with our Hilton culture. Amidst a period of unparalleled growth and performance in MEA, under Guy’s leadership I am confident we will continue to build on the significant momentum achieved in the region.”
Hutchinson added, “I am delighted to return to Hilton to lead the Middle East and Africa region and continue the incredible work that my friend JJ spearheaded. I started my career with Hilton in Amsterdam and have always admired this iconic hospitality brand and its superb culture. I look forward to leading Hilton’s next chapter in MEA and working with a team known for delivering incredible guest experiences and best-in-class results.”
Hilton currently has a presence of 285 hotels, either operational or under development, across the Middle East and Africa region, across 11 brands, supported by a workforce exceeding 29,000 individuals.
In 2023, Hilton opened several new hotels, including Hilton Skanes Monastir Beach Resort and Hilton Kinshasa, and secured agreements for destinations including Ghana, Nigeria, Tunisia, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia will be a major focus for Hitlon going forward. It recently revealed plans to quadruple its presence there. It currently operates 16 hotels in Saudi including Waldorf Astoria Jeddah – Qasr Al Sharq, Conrad Makkah, and Hilton Riyadh Hotel and Residences. It plans to open over 50 new hotels across 10 of its brands within the kingdom. It will include the introduction of new brands like LXR Hotels and Resorts, Canopy by Hilton, Embassy Suites by Hilton, and Hampton by Hilton to Saudi.