Executive of the Year Closeup: Christopher Nassetta

CPE's Hospitality Property Executive of the Year leads a company restructuring.

This article is one in a series of updates on the winners of CPE’s Executives of the Year awards. Now in its 19th year, the program recognizes the outstanding executives in commercial real estate’s major business sectors and asset categories. Winners of first place and honorable mention awards are selected by confidential vote of the CPE 100, an invited group of industry leaders.

Christopher Nassetta, President & CEO, Hilton Worldwide

Christopher Nassetta, president & CEO, Hilton Worldwide

Christopher Nassetta, president & CEO, Hilton Worldwide

Hospitality Property Executive of the Year

Headquarters: McLean, Va.

CEO since: 2007

Previous company: Host Hotels & Resorts Inc.

Hilton at a glance: More 4,600 properties and 758,000 rooms in 100 countries and territories.

Century mark: The opening of the Hilton N’Djamena in Chad during the fourth quarter expanded the company’s footprint to 100 countries and territories worldwide.

Major makeover: On Feb. 26, Nassetta confirmed reports late last year that the hotel giant was considering a restructuring. Hilton wants to spin off about 70 owned properties representing 35,000 keys into a publicly traded REIT. Also in the works is a spinoff of Hilton Grand Vacations, its vacation timeshare business, into a public company.

2015 highlights: Opened 320 new hotels representing more than 50,000 guest rooms for net growth of 43,000 keys. Company trimmed long-term debt by $1 billion through October. RevPAR for 2016 projected to increase 3 percent to 5 percent year-over-year.

Rendering of Tru by Hilton, the hospitality giant's 13th brand.

Rendering of Tru by Hilton, the hospitality giant’s 13th brand.

In the pipeline: 1,616 new hotels in 84 countries and territories, including 31 where Hilton currently has no properties in operation. The hotels comprise 266,000 keys (275,000, counting properties approved but not signed), including 142,000 outside the U.S. More than 100,000 new guest rooms worldwide were approved for development in 2015.

Tru colors: In January Nassetta rolled out Tru by Hilton, the hospitality company’s 13th brand. Nassetta reported on Feb. 26 that Tru by Hilton has 163 commitments. The first opening is scheduled by the end of the year.

Charged up: Hilton is expanding its roster of electric vehicle charging stations in the U.S. to 100 by the end of 2016.