O`Connell Hospitality Group, LLC announced today that hospitality industry
veteran Rick Besse has joined the firm as Senior Managing Director for the
Southwest region. Mr. Besse will be a pivotal member of the O`Connell
Mr. Besse brings to OHG over 30 years of hotel industry experience,
primarily in development, consulting and brokerage. He has a BA and MBA
from the Hotel School at Michigan State University.
After graduate school Mr. Besse joined Pannel Kerr Forster & Co. in
Atlanta, where he performed numerous feasibility studies throughout the
Southeast. High profile projects he consulted on include the 1,000-room
Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel in Atlanta and the 1,200-room Marriott Hotel
on Canal Street in New Orleans, LA.
Mr. Besse`s career was also highlighted by eight years in the restaurant
industry with Taco Bell. He started as a real estate representative and
worked his way up to Vice President of Development. He directed a staff of
21 real estate professionals and was responsible for the development of
over 500 restaurants.
In the early 1980`s, Mr. Besse formed his own firm specializing in
consulting and brokerage in the hospitality industry. The most notable
assignment he received was an exclusive contract with Marriott Corporation
to procure sites for the both the Courtyard by Marriott and Residence Inn
products in the Southwest United States. Mr. Besse was responsible for the
acquisition of over thirty sites during this engagement. In the late
1990`s, Mr. Besse was retained by Bedrock Partners, a Dallas based
investment firm, to assist in the acquisition of hotels throughout the
United States. Mr. Besse represented Bedrock in the acquisition of eleven
of the eighteen hotels they acquired.
In 1996, Mr. Besse formed an investment group that acquired two hotels in
the South Beach area of Miami Beach. He was Managing Director of the group
and was responsible for the renovation of the historic properties. The
properties were sold in 1998.
In 1998, Mr. Besse joined Patriot American Hospitality as Senior Vice
President of Development. He was charged with growing the Wyndham Garden
Hotel brand through acquisitions, conversions and ground up development.
Since Patriot American, Mr. Besse has been involved in hotel consulting
and brokerage assignment throughout the country.
Mr. Besse is a member and former Board Member of the International Society
of Hospitality Consultants. He has served on the Board of Directors for
the Alumni Association at Michigan State University and was Chairman of
the Board of The Sports Club in Irving Texas, home of the Four Seasons
Resort and Byron Nelson Golf Classic.
“We are ecstatic that Rick has joined OHG and has agreed to take a
leadership role within the company. He will expand our presence in the
Southwest and assist as we continue to grow our company. He was recruited
by several of the top hotel brokerage firms around the country. We are
very pleased that he chose OHG,” said Jim O`Connell, Principal of
O`Connell Hospitality Group, LLC in Boston.
O`Connell Hospitality Group, LLC specializes in the sales, financing and
project development of hotels, resorts, inns and restaurants across the
United States. It serves as advisor to private as well as publicly traded
companies for acquisitions and dispositions of hospitality assets.