Virgin Hotels Nashville Adds to Leadership Team

USA, Nashville, Tennessee. July 20, 2021

Virgin Hotels, the lifestyle hotel brand by Sir Richard Branson, is pleased to welcome three new members to its Nashville property's leadership team: James Garrido as Director of Food & Beverage, Joshua Schaeffer as Director of Experience, and Shane Fortner as Director of Sales.

James Garrido joins Virgin Hotels Nashville as the new Director of Food & Beverage. Garrido will oversee the Food & Beverage department to deliver a Virgin-branded experience that seamlessly incorporates fantastic food, delicious drinks, and superb service. Prior to joining Virgin Hotels, Garrido spent four years managing the Food & Beverage Operations team at the Kimpton Aertson Hotel in Nashville. During his time there, he oversaw the opening of Henley Nashville which won Eater Nashville's "Restaurant of the Year" Reader's Choice Award in 2018 and Nashville Scene's "Bar Program of the Year" Critic's Choice Award in 2019, and the Greater Nashville Hospitality Association award for Best Restaurant Manager in Nashville for 2019.

Prior to this, Garrido was the General Manager of multiple outlets at the Chicago Athletic Association and served as the Treasurer on the Executive Board at Slow Food Middle Tennessee. He remains deeply passionate about serving the Nashville community and supporting organizations that deal with inequality and food insecurity in the area.

Joshua Schaeffer joins Virgin Hotels Nashville as the new Director of Experience, managing the hotel's Guest Services and Housekeeping departments that aim to provide exceptional guest experiences while performing within financial guidelines. Schaeffer started his hospitality career in Santa Monica, California with Fairmont Hotels and Resorts, later managing top hotels including the San Ysidro Ranch, the Sorrel River Ranch Resort and Spa, the Hermitage Hotel, the Hyatt Greenville and the South Seas Island Resort in positions of Director of Guest Services, Guest Relations Manager and Director of Operations.

Nashville native Shane Fortner brings 15 years of experience in the Nashville hospitality industry to his new role at Virgin Hotels Nashville as the new Director of Sales. As Director of Sales, Fortner will oversee and supervise the Sales and Catering team at Virgin Hotels Nashville and ensure revenue goals for the property are met.

Prior to joining Virgin Hotels, Fortner served as Area Sales Manager for Loews Hotels in Nashville where he supervised a team of sales managers to grow business for the property. Additionally, Fortner gained experience serving in senior sales manager roles at the Hilton Nashville Downtown and the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.

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Architecture & Design: Wellness is Key


Like every other facet of hotel operations, architecture and design firms are adapting their work to ensure the safety and well-being of both guests and staff. New ways to bring Wellness into hotel spaces are being explored and these solutions are taking on many forms. Hotel designs are incorporating more open floor plans, open air spaces, high ceilings, outdoor areas and operable walls into their spaces. Guests no longer want to be packed into tight areas. More "biophilic" elements are also being incorporated, offering guests the sense of being outdoors. Another trend is the reimagining of guest rooms to support remote work capabilities. Some hotels are converting empty guest rooms into office spaces, complete with effective lighting and suitable backgrounds for video conferencing. Dedicated Zoom Rooms are also becoming increasingly popular. The main goal is to provide guests with a positive experience in a space that feels safe and comfortable. These are some of the architecture and design subjects that will be covered in the November issue of the Hotel Business Review.