Hilton Garden Inn Downtown announces key staff
As the restoration of the historic Professional Building nears completion and the building’s owner, Minneapolis-based CSM Corporation, prepares to reopen the site as the Hilton Garden Inn Phoenix Downtown, CSM has hired two key staff members to manage hotel operations and sales and marketing efforts.
Michelle Davis has been named general manager and Afsaneh Torres will serve as area director of sales and marketing for the new property.
Davis will lead all operations including managing the executive team, meeting sales and revenue targets, and ensuring guest satisfaction at Hilton Garden Inn Phoenix Downtown. Davis and her family recently relocated to Anthem, Ariz., from the Denver area, where she served as general manager of CSM’s Courtyard Denver South/Park Meadows. After supervising a major renovation of the hotel’s lobby as well as the introduction of the Courtyard Bistro concept, she helped the Courtyard win CSM’s 2014 Hotel of the Year and also scored a nomination for 2014 GM of the Year.
Davis also held general manager positions at the Residence Inn in Englewood, Colo., and the Holiday Inn Express Herndon/Reston in Herndon, Va., and managed the sales and catering effort for 253 suites at the SpringHill Suites Dulles Airport and the TownePlace Suites Dulles Airport in Sterling, Va.
“Michelle has experience in all aspects of hotel operations and an impressive track record of exceeding expectations in just about every area,” said Robb Hall, vice president of operations, CSM. “During her tenure with CSM, she has made her mark by demonstrating exceptional guest service as well as business savvy. The Hilton Garden Inn Phoenix Downtown is a very special property, so we needed to find exactly the right general manager to lead our team. Michelle was the natural choice.”
Torres is a hospitality veteran who most recently directed sales for Hilton Garden Inn Scottsdale Old Town and the Residence Inn Phoenix Mesa. She was recently promoted to area director of sales and marketing and will now oversee efforts for both Hilton Garden Inn Scottsdale Old Town and Hilton Garden Inn Phoenix Downtown. Torres has won several CSM awards including the 2015 Gary S. Holmes Award, which recognizes entrepreneurism, leadership, teamwork and financial results. This award is one of eight she has received in the last four years.
In addition to hotel sales, Torres has vast experience in catering and special events with numerous hotel properties and wedding facilities in California. She also serves as co-chair of the Arizona Hilton Cluster and helps direct statewide philanthropic efforts on behalf of the Hilton brand. Torres and her family have lived in Gilbert, Ariz., for eight years.
“Afsaneh is a highly focused, goal-oriented sales professional who possesses all of the qualities that are critical for this role,” said Robert Payne, CSM’s regional director of sales and marketing. “In addition to keen presentation, negotiation and organizational skills, she has an unmatched ability to build relationships with clients and customers.”
Located in the heart of downtown at Monroe Street and North Central Avenue, the Hilton Garden Inn Phoenix Downtown will open to the public in December 2015. With 170 well-appointed guestrooms on 12 floors, the hotel will offer an authentic historic aesthetic along with modern standards and amenities including a rooftop terrace, numerous large and small meeting and event spaces, a business center, a fitness center, valet parking, and a restaurant and retail space on the ground level.
The building, established in the 1930’s, housed Valley National Bank for decades and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places, but fell into disrepair after sitting vacant for more than 20 years.
At the outset of the renovation, CSM hired Historic Consultants, a company specializing in revitalizing historic structures, to oversee the project and help preserve the building’s historic integrity.
The renovated property will retain all of the features that have made it famous, from its limestone façade and grand entryway to its 24-foot ceilings, ornamental bronze elevators, restored marble-work and columns, and the former bank lobby, which will now serve as the hotel’s main reception area.