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Benchmark, Gemstone Merge

(July 2016) posted on Tue Jul 12, 2016

Combined companies operate 58 hotels

Two high-profile hotel management companies—Benchmark Hospitality International and Gemstone Hotels & Resorts (a Gemstone affiliate)—have merged. The resulting entity has a combined portfolio of 58 independent hotels in the U.S. and elsewhere.

Under the merger, both companies say they will jointly leverage their resources to better serve ownership partners, customers and the independent property segment of the hospitality industry. The merger will also strengthen the combined companies’ focus on experience-driven, destination travel properties in response to rapidly changing traveler demands, the firms say.

The combined companies plan to add more soft brands to their combined portfolio of independent properties, which currently includes members of such groups as Hilton Worldwide’s Curio; Marriott Intl.’s Autograph Collection; Starwood Hotels & Resorts’ Tribute Portfolio; Preferred Hotels & Resorts; Leading Hotels of the World; Historic Hotels of the World; and IACC.

“The platform that is being created is robust and in part designed for well-measured growth, something we will take advantage of while at the same time creating great case studies at each of our existing properties,” says Thomas Prins, a Gemstone partner who takes on the new role of managing director real estate investments with the merged companies.

In addition to Prins’ new role, the firms’ leadership is now structured thus: Benchmark Hospitality’s founder and chairman Burt Cabañas and Gencom founder Karim Alibhai will serve as principal shareholders. The remaining partners of both companies will serve in the following roles: Alex Cabañas, ceo; and Jeff McIntyre and Greg Champion, co-presidents and co-chief operating officers.



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