The Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas Welcomes Akis Neocleous as New General Manager

US Virgin Islands, St. Thomas. July 18, 2019

The Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas is pleased to announce the appointment of Akis Neocleous as General Manager. Neocleous will oversee the reopening of the resort later this year and head all operations. Most recently, he served as the General Manager of the W Panama, which opened to great fanfare under his direction.

"I am excited to join the Ladies and Gentlemen of The Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas during the reopening of this iconic property," said Neocleous. "My goal is to continue the legacy of excellence with my commitment to exceptional service and the highest level of operational productivity. I look forward to working with the team to maintain loyalty amongst our returning guests while welcoming a new generation of visitors."

A native of Cyprus, Neocleous is a graduate of the Glion Institute of Higher Education in Switzerland. He began his career with InterContinental Hotels & Resorts in Venezuela and has since worked at upscale hotels throughout the Caribbean and Latin America. His extensive experience in luxury includes positions with Relais & Chateaux and Leading Hotels of the World properties.

Much of Neocleous' experience has been with Mexico's top luxury properties, including the acclaimed Las Ventanas al Paraiso, a Rosewood Resort, recognized for its extraordinary guest experience. After several years in the competitive luxury market of Los Cabos, he took on the challenge of joining a small independent hotel in Panama City, the Grace Panama, where he maintained the No. 1 position on TripAdvisor from 2014 through 2017.

In 2017, Neocleous joined Marriott International as the opening General Manager of the W Panama, the brand's entry into the Central American market. In this position he led the team through opening and established the hotel as the place to be for entertainment and culinary experiences in Panama City.

Akis and his wife Cecilia have two children, whom he enjoys spending his spare time with. Akis also has a passion golf and cooking - he is even writing his own cookbook based on his travels.

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Revenue Management: Focus On Profit

Revenue Management is still a relatively new profession within hotel operations and as such, it continues to evolve. One significant trend in this area is a shift away from using revenue as the foundation to generate key performance indicators (KPIs) and to instead place the emphasis on profit. Traditionally, revenue managers have relied on total revenue per available room (TrevPAR) and revenue per available room (RevPAR) as the basis of their KPIs. Now, some revenue managers are using gross operating profit per available room (GOPPAR) as their primary KPI. This puts profit at the center of revenue management strategy, and managers are increasingly searching for new ways to increase the profitability of their hotels. Return on Investment is the objective of any hotel investment, so it is only logical that profitability and ROI will be emphasized going forward. Another trend is an expanded focus on direct hotel bookings. Revenue managers know that one way to increase profitability is to steer guests away from online travel agencies (OTAs) and book directly with the hotel. This tactic also reinforces brand identity and loyalty, and encourages repeat business. In addition, it provides a valuable platform to market the hotel directly to the customer, and to upsell room upgrades or other services to them. Another trend for revenue managers involves automation in their software programs. Revenue management systems with automation are far more desirable than those without it. Automating data entry and logistics increases efficiency, allowing managers to spend more time on formulating strategy. As a bonus, an automated system helps with aggregating and interpreting data. The October issue of the Hotel Business Review will address these developments and document how some leading hotels are executing their revenue management strategies.