Chairman of JA Resorts & Hotels, Ahmed Baker tells the story of a successful homegrown hospitality company from its inception in the late 1970’s.
Now a legacy UAE brand with a 38-year reputation for excellence, Chairman Baker reflects upon the invaluable vision, guidance and support he received from the nation’s leaders and his gratitude and appreciation for the JA Resorts & Hotels staff – whom he is proud to call family.
Anthony Ross has over 30 years of industry leadership experience in the hospitality sector, with spanning roles on multiple continents. Before joining JA Resorts & Hotels, he was CEO at the Indonesia-based Aryaduta Hotel Group and held the Executive Vice President position at Preferred Hotels & Resorts, where he oversaw 120 hotels in the Asia Pacific, Middle East, and Africa region. His vision is to enhance how our guests experience both brand values, expand and deepen our reach and eventually bring heartfelt hospitality to new destinations in the region and beyond.
Alaister Murray is an Irish Chartered Accountant and has been Chief Financial and Commercial Officer of JA Resorts and Hotels since February 2017. Previously Alaister was CFO of the Jumeirah Hotel Group for 10 years and was Finance Director of a Dubai based, AIM London listed hotel group. Alaister started his career and spent ten years in professional services and corporate finance with PriceWaterhouseCoopers in the UK and Dubai and has also worked in senior finance positions in the oil sector, investment banking and logistics. Alaister graduated from the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland with a BA (Hons) degree in accounting.
Originally a Dutch national, born and brought up in Istanbul, with extensive experience in the industry, Robert Mikaelian joined JA Resorts & Hotels in April 2014 as Group Director of Human Resources. At JA Resorts & Hotels, Robert is responsible for overseeing, guiding and managing the full scope of Human Resources and Administration for the group and the development of group policies, procedures and streamlining operations of the department.
Thomas’ career in sales and marketing is spanned over 20 years in the hospitality and leisure industry. He has worked across many international markets including Germany, Egypt, and Spain in senior commercial roles within established and globally. His experience in the development of international leisure and regional corporate markets will be invaluable in ensuring our portfolio of properties is the first choice for both international leisure and business travelers. Overseeing all sales, marketing and revenue efforts as the company continues to build on its key growth and development strategies and further cultivate its unique blend of ‘Heartfelt Hospitality’ and ‘Casual Luxury’ to guests across the globe.
When I was a young teenager, I started watching TV ads more than TV shows and this is when I knew that the wonderful world of advertising & communication fascinates me. I moved to Montreal, Canada in the late 80s and studied advertising & communications to then land a job at BBDO. I spent 14 years of my professional career with BBDO moving up the ladder to then assume a position of General Manager for a period of 5 years. Creativity can be achieved in everything we do.
Rob officially began his culinary career at the age of 16, and during the past 33 years, he has been blessed to have been able to work all around the world. In Australia, he worked in some of the most well-regarded restaurants in both Sydney and Melbourne which opened doors for him to work in Michelin starred restaurants in both London and Europe. He is responsible for restaurant and bar repositioning across the portfolio as well as the development of all new concepts and revamping existing ideas; developing design briefs, liaising with designers, creating indicative menus, developing the pricing and business model and advising on team selection and training before handing over to the operations team.