Janet McNab, Sheraton Grand Sydney Hyde Park

Exclusive: Janet McNab joins Sydney Sheraton

Experienced hospitality leader Janet McNab has taken up the General Manager role at Sheraton Grand Sydney Hyde Park, returning to Australia after more than two decades working in Asia.

In a hospitality career that has taken her to China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Macao, McNab has gained experience across multiple Sheraton brands as well as other prominent brands such as Starwood Hotels and Resorts.

In her most recent role, she served as the Multi-Property Vice President of the largest Sheraton globally, the 4,001-room Sheraton Grand Macao and 400-room St. Regis Macao complex, managing over 2,000 staff.

Following a decision to return to Australia last year to be closer to family, McNab received a call from Marriott that drew her back into the hospitality world.  

“[My husband and I] thought, ‘let’s make this our next adventure’ – and that’s what we’ve done,” she told HM.

Janet McNab, Sheraton Grand Sydney Hyde Park

“I’ve never lived in Sydney. It’s a beautiful city in a beautiful country, which I call home.”

With a track record of success in various General Manager roles internationally, including positions at Starwood Hotels and Resorts South Thailand, Four Points by Sheraton Bangkok and Le Meridien Nirvana Resort and Spa Bali, McNab has experience managing large and complex multi-property hotel operations.

Three months into the role – splitting her time between Sydney and her home in the Sunshine Coast – she is busy putting her global hospitality experience into practice.

“The product has been in the market a long time and it has a great reputation, a beautiful following, a lovely repeat guest factor and a really good team,” she said.

“I see the opportunity to continue to elevate that and to maximise it. Let’s look at all of our unique points and see which one of them is critical to our success, which one of them can’t be imitated, and let’s go down that road and take advantage of what is a really flourishing market.”

McNab was named the General Manager of the Year, Greater China by The Hotelier Awards in 2017, and was awarded the esteemed Marriott International Women in Leadership Asia Pacific 2016 Award.

Passionate about mentoring young talent, she is using her position to support and develop team members.

“There are a lot of youngsters here and I feel that [mentoring] is a really good way to give back,” she told HM.

“I’m starting women in leadership groups across all levels and I’m doing mentor sessions with middle management. I’m getting it all up and running.”

Hilton appoints VP of Luxury Brands APAC

Hilton has appointed Candice D’Cruz as Vice President of Luxury Brands for Asia Pacific. Based in Singapore, D’Cruz takes responsibilty for luxury brands, Waldorf Astoria Hotels and Resorts, LXR Hotels and Resorts and Conrad Hotels and Resorts, across Asia Pacific.

“Candice brings a wealth of industry experience and a profound understanding of luxury and hospitality,” said Hilton Luxury Brands Senior Vice President and Global Head, Dino Michael.

“Her impressive track record in enhancing brand distinctiveness and elevating guest experiences will be instrumental as we continue to strategically expand and enhance our world-class brands across Asia Pacific. I am confident that her expertise will contribute significantly to our ongoing commitment to delivering exceptional luxury experiences.”

Candice D’Cruz, Hilton

With over two decades of experience, D’Cruz joins Hilton from Marriott International, where she most recently served as Vice President of Luxury Brand Management and Marketing for Europe, Middle East, and Africa. Her experience includes roles in Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide, Inc., and Emaar, overseeing various aspects of brand, marketing and communications in diverse markets.

“I am delighted to embark on this journey with Hilton based out of the vibrant city of Singapore,” said D’Cruz.

“My passion lies in shaping distinctive brand identities alongside curated and localized guest experiences, recognizing their pivotal role in ensuring our brands’ enduring success throughout the region.

“Having long championed the development of female leaders and the cultivation of young talent, I look forward to empowering our teams to unlock their full potential. Together, we aspire to set a new standard for luxury in the region, delivering an unparalleled standard of excellence.”

D’Cruz has earned numerous accolades including number one in “The Power of 25”, Hotelier Middle East’s 2019 list of 25 influential women in hospitality and ranked among the top 50 storytellers of the region by Forbes Middle East. Hotelier Middle East also recently named her ‘Trailblazer’ for 2023, an Editor’s Choice Award for visionary hoteliers who played an active role in transforming the region’s hospitality industry over the past 12 months.

Crown Perth names F&B lead

Crown Perth has appointed seasoned hospitality professional Emmanuel Benardos as Executive General Manager Food and Beverage at Crown Resorts Perth.

Emmanuel Benardos, Crown Perth

Benardos brings decades of experience from across Asia-Pacific including with luxury brands such as the Ritz Carlton and the Four Seasons. He has held managerial positions including General Manager of the Grand National Hotel in Sydney, General Manager at Level33 in Singapore, and Group General Manager for the Unlisted Collection, which includes seven boutique hotels and 23 restaurants, including Burnt Ends (1 Michelin Star) and Restaurant Andre (2 Michelin Stars).

Most recently, Benardos was appointed as General Manager of F&B for Fairmont Singapore and Swissotel The Stamford.

“It’s a delight to be back home in Australia and move to an exciting city I love and have a deep and long-standing connection with,” said Benardos.

“As Crown Perth is a world class place of hospitality and working with David Tsai and the incredible team it seemed like an opportunity too good to pass up.”

BWH promotes sales and marketing director to regional role

Leanne Stocks, BWH Hotels

BWH Hotels has promoted Director of Sales and Marketing, Leanne Stocks, to the position of Regional Director of Commercial – BWH Hotels Australasia and WorldHotels APAC.

In this new role, Stocks will continue to lead the Australasia sales and marketing team while taking on the responsibility of luxury and lifestyle brand, WorldHotels across Asia Pacific.

Stocks began her career in the hospitality industry with Best Western Hotels and Resorts, and has seen the growth of the brand through its acquisition of WorldHotels, to become the global powerhouse known today as BWH Hotels. With over two decades of experience with the brand, Stocks brings a wealth of knowledge and a proven track record for driving incremental business to BWH’s growing rewards programs and portfolio of hotels.

“I am excited to step into this new role within the organisation to share the WorldHotels portfolio in the Asia Pacific region.

“With a brand that exudes luxury, character, and charm, I’m committed to building the brand’s legacy as WorldHotels continues to grow around the world. It’s an honour to be able to continue working with such a strong group of hotels and a commercial team that is expanding in the market to further its reputation.”

Based out of BWH Hotel’s Sydney head office, Stocks will oversee an additional 40+ WorldHotels properties working with the team located around Australia, Singapore, Bangkok, and China.