Arora Group’s executive director John Donaldson steps down

Arora Group’s executive director, John Donaldson, has announced his retirement after 15 years with the group.

A fellow of the Institute of Hospitality, on which he served as a director and trustee for six years and a fellow of the Chartered Management Institute, Donaldson has been active in the industry, as a distinguished hotelier with over 45 years in hospitality.

The announcement comes shortly after the opening of Arora’s largest hotel development to date, InterContinental London – The O2.

Donaldson began his career with Arora in 2001, launching the 312-bedroom Arora Hotel Gatwick/Crawley as General Manager and managing its 120-bedroom extension in 2004.

Donaldson was then appointed Arora Group’s executive director in 2007 and subsequently had direct responsibility for opening Sofitel London Heathrow at Terminal 5.

Donaldson will not retire completely, and will join the Arora Group Advisory Board and continue his role as non-executive director of the Gatwick Diamond Initiative.

Surinder Arora said: “John is a highly respected professional among his colleagues, stakeholders and our partners and has played a key role in the company’s transformation. In addition to leading some of our most significant hotel openings, including Sofitel London Heathrow, John has established dynamic teams and partnerships during his tenure that have been fundamental to our success, and I wish him a long, healthy and very happy retirement.”

Donaldson said: “I am exceptionally proud of all that the Arora Group has accomplished while I have been part of the team, not least in the hotel division which has experienced exceptional growth with some incredible hotels. Working with Surinder and his team has been an absolute privilege and a pleasure and I am delighted to remain engaged in the Arora business in my advisory role.”

Emily King

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Emily King

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