Emaar Properties PJSC today announced the appointment of Olivier Harnisch as the Chief Executive Officer of Emaar Hospitality Group, its hospitality & leisure business. Olivier brings to Emaar over 30 years of international experience in the hotel and tourism industry. He joins Emaar from Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group in Brussels, where he was Chief Operating Officer, responsible for a portfolio of over 350 leased, managed and franchised hotels in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
Olivier has acquired in-depth expertise in all aspects of the hospitality business through multiple leadership roles across four continents. His experience will be a significant asset for Emaar in delivering ambitious growth plans for its hospitality business. Emaar has over 35 new hotels and serviced residences in the development pipeline in the UAE and international markets.
Mohamed Alabbar, Chairman of Emaar Properties, said: “Emaar Hospitality Group has created exceptional experiences for guests through its portfolio of hotels. We are now taking the operations of our hospitality group to the next level, to meet the aspirations of the next generation of travellers, and to drive Dubai’s growth as a global tourism hub. Olivier Harnisch’s significant regional and international experience in both hotel and restaurant operations will be an asset in driving our onward growth, with a focus on bringing innovative and value-added guest experiences, and managing our growing number of hotels that serve distinct market niches.”
Olivier Harnisch said: “Emaar Hospitality Group has set a high standard with its portfolio of innovative hotel brands. The brand identity of Emaar and its commitment towards offering memorable guest experiences are strong foundations to take the hospitality business to a new era of growth. Going forward, we will focus on further enhancing guest experiences, implementing new strategies that create long-term value for all stakeholders, and expanding our footprint within and outside the UAE.”
Olivier started his career in 1986, and was initially associated with individual hotels, food & beverage operations and airlines for over 13 years. This enabled him to gain strong insights in classic hospitality and in developing compelling guest experiences. He then worked at Hilton Worldwide for over 14 years where he held the position of Vice President for Northern and Central Europe, before joining Carlson Rezidor Group in 2012. Having worked across the globe, Olivier is fluent in six languages.
He holds an MSc in Organisational Labour from the University of London, an MBA in International Finance from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh and a Degree in Hospitality Management from Berlin School of Hotel Administration.