Josh Head Welcomed as General Manager for Laurel Hotel and Spa

August 24, 2022
Josh Head

Ithaka Hospitality Partners has welcomed Josh Head as general manager for Laurel Hotel and Spa, the newest luxury hotel in Auburn. Slated to open in late August 2022, Head will lead day-to-day operations for the highly anticipated hotel. 

Head’s current position as general manager comes after more than a decade of experience in hospitality management in various positions, including with AAA Five-Diamond properties. Prior to his current role, he began his career at the front office of Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort in Sandestin, Florida and then moved on to Charlotte, North Carolina as the front office manager of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, eventually working his way up to director of housekeeping and assistant rooms executive. 

Head also served as director of rooms of Pursell Farms before being promoted to assistant general manager. Most recently, Head was director of hospitality with Orchestra Partners in Birmingham, where he was responsible for leading food and beverage concepts and setting service standards and culture, as well as leading the development of two new hospitality concepts. 

“We are very pleased to appoint Josh Head as general manager of The Laurel Hotel and Spa,” said Hans van der Reijden, founder & CEO of Ithaka Hospitality Partners. “He is a quality-driven leader with tremendous hospitality experience in leading and motivating a team, and we are thrilled to welcome him to Auburn. “  

Head holds a bachelor of science in hospitality management. 

Read more recent moves and appointments in the hospitality industry. 

Plus: The Laurel Hotel and Spa Inducted into Membership of Preferred Hotels and Resorts

The Laurel Hotel and Spa, The Hotel at Auburn University and the Dixon Conference Center have all been accepted into membership of Preferred Hotels and Resorts, which represent more than 700 distinctive hotels, resorts, residences and unique hotel groups across 80 countries.

Preferred Hotels and Resorts have five global collections: Legend, Lifestyle, L.V.X., Connect and Preferred Residences. The Laurel Hotel and Spa joins their L.V.X. Collection and The Hotel at Auburn University, along with the Dixon Conference Center, join their Lifestyle Collection. The L.V.X. Collection features sophisticated hotels located in vibrant city scapes or destination get-aways that provide guests with memorable experiences whether through dining, entertainment or spas, paired with service that is attentive, personal and engaging. The Lifestyle Collection represents global properties whose local dining articulates culture and style, as well as reflecting a diverse, authentic, approachable and intelligent service style.

The Laurel Hotel and Spa has the distinction of being the first hotel in Alabama to become a member of Preferred Hotels and Resorts, followed by The Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center. Both hotels are under the management and leadership of Ithaka Hospitality Partners. 

“We are honored to be among such beautiful and exquisite hotels, “said Hans van der Reijden, founder & CEO of Ithaka Hospitality Partners. “This affiliation of the world’s largest independent hotel brand, representing more than 700 independent hotels, resorts and residences is an honor for us to be in such prestigious company.” 

Guests who stay at these properties can now apply for I Prefer Hotel Rewards, the brand’s points-based loyalty program. Globally, there are currently more than 4 million travelers enrolled. Points are redeemable for cash-value Reward Certificates, Elite status, and other special benefits upon eligible stays at more than 700 participating hotels and resorts worldwide. 

Preferred Hotels and Resorts give participating members an advantage by supporting their goals through the provision of strategic group, corporate, and leisure sales, integrated marketing solutions, comprehensive revenue management, global connectivity through reservations services, progressive distribution technology, and individualized guest support. Properties must maintain the high-quality standards and service levels required by the Preferred Hotels & Resorts Integrated Quality Assurance Program while remaining part of the portfolio.

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About the author
Annie Smith Barkalow

Annie Smith Barkalow is a content intern with Meetings Today and a full-time student at Mount Mercy University, where she serves as editor-in-chief of the campus newspaper The Times.