MONTREAL — Jordi Solé, the incoming new President of Transat’s new hotel division, comes to the tour operator backed by experience with The Barcelo Hotel Group, Blue Diamond Resorts and IBEROSTAR.
Solé’s appointment is effective Feb. 20, when he will take over leadership of Transat’s entire hotel development operations in the Caribbean and Mexico.
Following the sale of its 35% minority interest in Ocean Hotels in Fall 2017 Transat announced plans to operate some 5,000 owned or managed hotel rooms within seven years.
“We are delighted to be associated with a tourism and resort industry professional who has extensive experience in operations, sales, marketing and staff management at all-inclusive resorts at sun destinations,” said Transat’s President and CEO Jean-Marc Eustache. “We will be able to rely on Mr. Solé’s strong knowledge of operations and markets in order to develop our own hotel chain in the South.”
He added: “The development of this new hotel division will drive Transat’s growth and prosperity by enabling us to totally adapt the travel experience to our customers’ needs.”
Solé has overseen the operations of resorts belonging to several major international hotel chains since 2001.
He began his career in the industry in Spain as Deputy Managing Director of Barcelo Hotels and Resorts, now The Barcelo Hotel Group.
He came to Latin America in 2009 as head of IBEROSTAR Hotels and Resorts in Mexico, where he oversaw the 10 resorts in the region, with a total of some 4,000 rooms and 4,500 employees.
More recently he was appointed Senior VP, Operations, for Blue Diamond Resorts, participating in the extensive growth and development of the company.
Solé holds an MBA from IESE Business School and a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, in Barcelona.
Speaking to Travelweek in October 2017 as plans were laid for Transat’s hotels division, Odette Trottier, Transat’s Director, Communications and Corporate Affairs, said vertical integration is crucial for tour operators. “It becomes more and more important for leisure travel companies to control the actual products – the flight, transfers and excursions, and, of course, hotels.”