The Clarks Hotels and Resorts has appointed Gabriel David Gunesekere as Head Development Hotels and Resorts – Sri Lanka, Maldives and International. He will be responsible for negotiating management contracts, branding, and recruiting teams in certain geographical locations with a focus on the expansion of properties in Sri Lanka and the Maldives with representations internationally.
Gabriel Gunesekere is an accomplished professional, with more than 30 years of experience in tourism and hospitality management. Gabriel’s tenure-ship extends to many parts of the globe. However, his key current locations of focus are – The Indian Ocean Islands, the Middle East, North Africa, Southern Europe and South East Asia with a twin positioning of working – out of Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates. He was also part of midscale and upscale hotels that included luxury properties in Qatar, Bahrain, The UAE – Dubai and Abu Dhabi, Sri Lanka, Myanmar which also included Inbound Tourism in Oman and The Maldives, etc.
Gabriel also has a key interest in continuous education having followed many Tourism studies and workshops, especially with the World Tourism Organization (WTO) in Qatar, and Accor Academy Dubai. Currently, he is pursuing an online MBA from Staffordshire University U.K.
He has worked with renowned brands such as The French hotel group – Accor Hotels Qatar / The Gulf Region promoting different brands of Accor Hotels, Swiss-Belhotel International, Bahrain, Millennium hotel, and Abu Dhabi. Jebel Ali Resorts Dubai, The Kingsbury Hotel Colombo, Sri Lanka, The Rose Garden Hotel Yangon, Myanmar, etc.
Prior to the present assignment, he was working as Director of Sales and Marketing for The Kingsbury Hotel Colombo, Sri Lanka and The Rose Garden Hotel, Yangon, Myanmar. During his work tenure, he significantly increased the corporate, MICE and leisure segment revenues and improved both the positioning of hotels and the sales teams alike.
On his appointment, Gabriel Gunesekere shares, “I must say that I am indeed excited to join The Clarks Hotels and Resorts, especially when the group has planned to focus on an expansion drive overseas. Due to my prior work experience in hospitality which is spread across many countries internationally, I can understand the intricacies of different cultures and business segments similarly. Considering the post-pandemic period, we can certainly see a huge shift taking place, especially in the hospitality sector. Travellers are now looking for safer protocols in health-related areas that include up-market properties. Customers are also more demanding and tech-savvy and select properties with international standards and quality properties. We are delighted to mention that we are always happy to tie up with those properties that also align together with our brand values. We want to ensure these properties provide the same level of hospitality for which The Clarks Hotels and Resorts share and portray.”