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Who were this week's travel industry movers & shakers?

Who got a new gig this week? Check out this week’s travel industry movers & shakers!

Who got a new gig this week? Check out this week’s travel industry movers & shakers!



1. O’Brien joins Travellers Choice

travel industry Travellers Choice appointment

Travellers Choice appointed Nerida O’Brien as its new Sydney-based Business Development Manager for New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory.

O’Brien has extensive travel industry experience, having worked over the past 12 years for some of the world’s leading retail, airline, GDS and tour companies.

In her most recent role as Sales Development Manager at Scenic Tours/Evergreen Tours she interacted with more than 300 travel agents in Western Sydney, Central West and Riverina.

O’Brien is now responsible for supporting Travellers Choice members’ sales and marketing activities, driving expansion of the national retail group’s network, and liaising with preferred suppliers.

Travellers Choice Chief Executive Christian Hunter says O’Brien brings invaluable experience to the group.


2. New man on top for China Southern in Aus

travel industry China Southern Appointment

There’s a new man in charge of Australian and New Zealand operations for China Southern Airlines.

The announcement comes just before the airline sent its first Boeing 787 to Perth – increasing capacity to the city.

Louis Lu steps into the role of Managing Director for the two countries where he will be responsible for the continued increase of sales.

Mr Lu started his career with China Southern Airlines in Guangzhou, China since 1992, and most recently Mr. Lu held the position of Senior Vice President the Americas with China Southern Airlines, and prior to that was Country Manager for China Southern Airlines in Malaysia.

Mr Lu, will be based in Sydney at the airline’s Regional Office.

There he will be responsible for overall duties for the Australian and New Zealand region.


3. Evans enters the Stayz home

Amee appointment Amee Evans has been welcomed into her new home as Traveller Marketing Manager for Stayz and HomeAway.

The appointment reinforces Stayz’s commitment to further growing the established and much-loved domestic brand.

Prior to joining the Stayz and HomeAway team, Amee held a pivotal role at Expedia ANZ as Senior Marketing and Communications Manager, where she was responsible for brand strategy, rolling out award-winning creative and developing integrated campaigns that established Expedia as local market leaders.

“It’s a privilege to be joining such a strong team of dedicated individuals who share the same vision as I do for pioneering marketing and bringing the many benefits of holiday rentals to even more travellers.”

Amee Evans, Stayz Traveller Marketing Manager


4. Ziptrek lands new team member

Ecoto appointment Multi award-winning eco-tourism company Ziptrek Ecotours continues to expand its business with the appointment of Matt Hirst to the sales team.

Matt will help maintain sales growth with local sales agents and will work alongside sales and marketing manager Nicky Busst – one of the four current original team members present when Ziptrek Ecotours introduced zipline tours to New Zealand five years ago.

Long-standing team member Will Murphy will be taking up a new role within the team as ‘Sales – Group and Online’.

Will has worked for Ziptrek for over two years in the local sales position and moves into this newly created role.

His key responsibility will be to drive the company’s digital sales and online presence.

Matt has been working in the tourism industry since leaving college in 2006 where he gained numerous qualifications in travel and tourism.


5. Former Jumeirah chef joins Mercure GC

chef appointment

Mercure Gold Coast Resort has appointed Darren Clements to the role of Executive Chef, overseeing the iconic Palm Meadows properties recently relaunched restaurant and bar, in-room dining, and extensive conference and events catering services.

A local Brisbane boy, Darren commenced his career in the kitchens of some of Australia’s best Australia’s most popular restaurants and hotels, including the Sheraton Brisbane, Melbourne’s Oberoi Windsor Hotel, and the Sofitel Melbourne On Collins.

Most notably, Darren has worked extensively in Arabia, involved in the pre-opening of the 867-room Madinat Jumeirah Arabian Resort in Dubai with its 45 restaurant and bars.

He was also Executive Chef for the pre-opening of the W Doha Hotel in Qatar, which boasts 445 rooms and restaurants by Michelin star chef Jean Georges Vongrichten.

Describing his food style as eclectic, Darren uses his classic French training and love of Asian and Arabic flavours from his many culinary journeys around the globe to inspire his restaurant menus.

At the Mercure Gold Coast Resort, he says he is looking forward to creating an al a carte menu featuring local produce from the Gold Coast, Tweed Coast and South East Queensland, incorporating indigenous recipes into the resort’s regular restaurant and bar menus.

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