Orient-Express Hotels Ltd. (NYSE: OEH, http://www.orient-express.com), owners or part-owners and managers of 50 luxury hotel, restaurant, tourist train and river cruise properties in 25 countries, today announced that Georg R. Rafael has been elected Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors.
In this newly created position, Mr Rafael will chair meetings of the Board in the absence of the Chairman and substitute for the Chairman as required. He will also assist the Chairman in matters relating to the responsibilities of the Board.
A native of Berlin, Georg Rafael has spent his entire career in the hotel industry. He is a graduate of the Hotel Management School in Lausanne, Switzerland and has served in many hotel management positions throughout the world.
In 1972, he joined Robert H. Burns to start Regent International Hotels. He ran hotels, negotiated acquisitions and oversaw construction. He sold his interest in Regent and established Rafael Hotels Limited in November 1986.
He sold Rafael Hotels Limited to the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group in April 2000 and assisted them in their worldwide expansion plans until the end of his term in mid May 2002.
In June 2002 Georg Rafael embarked on a new venture and returned to independence as Managing Director of the newly formed company Rafael Group S.A.M. based in Monaco. The group acts primarily as a holding company for its hotel investments and assists in the development of international deluxe hotel properties.
He has been a Board member of Orient-Express Hotels since 2002 and previously served on the Board in the early ‘90s.