Sage Hospitality Group Honors Leaders and Properties with Awards at Annual Operations and Commercial Leadership Events
Over the course of two weeks in January, operational and commercial leaders from across Sage Hospitality Group’s portfolio of more than 110 hotels, restaurants and entertainment venues came together to get energized for what lies ahead in 2023 while celebrating an incredibly successful 2022.
The Sage Leadership Festival and Commercial Leadership Festival, which happened in Austin, Texas at Hotel Van Zandt and in Denver across numerous properties, respectively, gave leaders the opportunity to hear from company executives, network with colleagues and volunteer hundreds of man-hours in local communities.
“Thanks to the incredible leadership and hard work of our people at our businesses across the country and our Home Office in Denver, Sage had an incredibly successful 2022 with the addition of 14 hotels and restaurants to our portfolio, and it was wonderful to come together to celebrate that,” said Sage Co-Founder and CEO Walter Isenberg. “These conferences, which focused on the ideas of moving forward and igniting our leaders’ energy, emphasized the humanity of our business, while also allowing us to lift one another up and look toward the exciting future ahead through our unwavering commitment to one another and the industry we serve. We’re starting 2023 off on the right foot as we make our way to becoming the nation’s favorite lifestyle hospitality company.”
Sage Leadership Festival Award Winners
As part of the conference programs, each event celebrated the success of Sage’s properties and leaders with a variety of awards both based on metrics and nominations.
“Our portfolio of hotels and restaurants had an incredible 2022, and that was reflected in the sheer number of properties that were recognized for their accomplishments in metric-based categories like Excellence in Revenue and Profit Performance, Guest Satisfaction and Market Share Growth,” said Sage’s President of Hotels & Restaurants Daniel del Olmo. “Without a doubt, these accomplishments are incredible and are proof that our hotel and restaurant teams across the country are thriving and making a difference. In addition, it was truly an honor to celebrate our leaders and properties that received nominated awards, as they represent the leaders and teams that are truly living our purpose of enriching lives, one experience at a time.”
While many, many awards were given during the gala awards celebration at the Sage Leadership Festival, operational leaders and properties were honored with the following awards that were based on feedback and submissions from their peers:
The company’s top individual award, the Eagle Award, is given to a leader who exhibits overall outstanding leadership and impact, which is felt throughout the company and not just at any one property where they work. This year, the award was given to Tiffany Owen, General Manager of The Rally Hotel and The Maven. Owen, who started with the company more than 8 years ago as a front desk manager, is a true embodiment of what it means to enrich lives, one experience at a time.
As a surprise, a second, honorary Eagle Award was given to Sage’s Co-Founder and CEO Walter Isenberg in recognition of the incredible fortitude and perseverance he showed in leading the company through the depths of the pandemic and successfully to the other side. It was an incredible moment to honor the man who has led the company with heart, empathy and love for his associates for nearly 40 years.
The General Manager of the Year award is given annually to one hotel general manager and one restaurant general manager who exhibit outstanding overall leadership, meaningful impact at their location, a deep commitment to growing their team members, a strong presence in their community and strong owner relationships. This year, the winners were Joseph Steiskal, General Manager of Embassy Suites Boulder and Hilton Garden Inn Boulder, and Lisa DeRosa, General Manager of The Corner Office.
Courtney Griffith, General Manager of Catbird, was the recipient of the Perseverance and Courage Award, honoring her tenacity and positive attitude in the face of various challenges that came her way over the course of that property’s first year in operation. The award was also given to John McCarroll, General Manager of Cambria New Orleans, having managed his property through a hurricane within his first week, and never missing a beat despite that challenge.
Celebrating placemaking and Sage’s commitment to creating places that people go to, not through, the Artful Hospitality Award was given to Ed Blair, General Manager of The Crawford Hotel and The Oxford Hotel, recognizing the way he and his team bring a truly exceptional guest experience to life in Denver’s most historic hotel.
Rookie of the Year recognizes a new hotel or restaurant GM who has been employed by Sage for less than a year and demonstrates an unwavering commitment to Sage’s core values and purpose. The award was given to two recipients this year: Giuseppe de Santis, General Manager of Homewood Suites Boulder, and David Friday, General Manager of Mercat a la Planxa.
The Spirit of Innovation Award was given to Nathan Ayers, General Manager of Urban Farmer Philadelphia for his creative and innovative approach to creating memorable guest experiences resulting in positive business outcomes for the restaurant.
Kim Corrigan, Vice President of the Sage Independent Hotel Collection, a 15-year veteran of the company who has served across numerous properties and the Sage Home Office, was awarded Mentor of the Year for her relentless support and impact on the individuals she leads and her incredible ability to nurture and grow impactful leaders.
Associate of the Year is awarded each year to two passionate, hard-working property associates who embody the true spirit of hospitality and Sage’s purpose of enriching lives, one experience at a time. This year’s winners were Scott Hainey, Restaurant Server from The Corner Office in Denver, and Sam Degefu, Lead Front Desk Agent at The Morrison House in Old Town Alexandria.
Manager of the Year also recognizes two individuals who have an exceptional impact on both guests and the associates they lead every day. The award was given to Demelza Quinn, General Manager at Urban Farmer Portland and Departure Portland, as well as James Pack, Director of Facilities at The Curtis Hotel.
Hotel of the Year is based on more than just metrics and is given to a property that truly represents overall excellence in everything they do and the embodiment of Sage’s core values. The honor was given this year to Perry Lane Hotel.
The award for Restaurant of the Year went to Urban Farmer Portland in recognition of their incredible work throughout the year to drive excellent performance in addition to creating incredible guest experiences for their diners.
The Community Service Award was presented to the team from Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel, who demonstrated outstanding community service efforts that had an impact on their community, in addition to their support of Sage’s company giving programs, Dollars for Dreams and Hungry to Help.
The teams from both Springhill Suites Oceanside & Hello Betty and The Ritz-Carlton, Chicago were honored as the Service Excellence Team of the Year, showcasing not only strong guest satisfaction scores but a commitment to providing an outstanding guest service experience at their properties.
Commercial Leadership Festival Award Winners
The Commercial Leadership Festival, which brought together Marketing, Sales and Revenue leaders from across the portfolio and the Home Office, similarly celebrated the success of 2022 with numerous metric-based and nominated awards.
“This was the first time in a handful of years that we have been able to get our commercial leaders together, and it was really special to bring everyone together to celebrate, connect and ignite the passion in our leaders for a great year ahead,” said Chief Commercial Officer Patrick Pahlke. “Being able to honor the work of the incredible individuals and properties that won our nominated awards was a truly incredible part of a productive and energizing week together.”
At the Commercial Leadership Festival, leaders and properties were honored with the following nominated awards:
The event’s top award, the Torch Bearer Award, recognizes a leader who exemplifies Sage’s core values while driving sales performance for their property. The honor was given to Jessica Bauer, Director of Sales and Marketing at The Logan, recognizing her selfless leadership, unwavering advocacy for her team and the way she navigates every challenge with absolute grace.
Angela Blackstock, Director of Sales and Marketing for Embassy Suites Boulder and Hilton Garden Inn Boulder, was honored as Mentor of the Year for her dedicated leadership and team-first mentality through the difficult years of the pandemic and as the business has ramped back up.
Dan McGarry, Area Director of Revenue Management, was named the Rising Star, recognizing his ability to successfully manage changing assets in his portfolio and bring unique solutions to the table while remaining calm under pressure.
The team from The Curtis was honored with the Triumph Award for how they overcame adversity in the last year, truly showing guests and colleagues how to “Stay Happy” through the creative ways they drove results when the odds weren’t in their favor.
Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel was honored as this year’s Trend Setter, honoring the way that the team there created a new business strategy in order to outperform their comp set.
Community service is central to Sage’s ethos, and the Spirit of Engagement award recognizes a property commercial team that took time to give back and support Sage’s charitable initiatives outside of their day-to-day work. This year, the honor was given to the complex team from the AC Hotel Portland Downtown and Courtyard Portland City Center.
To learn more about Sage Hospitality Group and its expanding portfolio of more than 110 hotels, restaurants, bars, coffee shops and entertainment venues from coast to coast, visit www.sagehospitalitygroup.com.
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