Michelle Russo, CHAM, MAI, CHA

Guest Editor-In-Chief

Ms. Michelle Russo, CHAM, MAI, CHA, holds a Bachelor of Science from the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University. In 2003, she founded Hotel Asset Value Enhancement (hotelAVE). She is passionate about creating value through strategic asset positioning, management contract negotiations, and collaboration with brand and management executives. Ms. Russo was named one of the 30 Influential Women in Hospitality by Hotel Management Magazine (October 2017) and one of 20 Women in Lodging by Lodging Magazine (September 2015). She has co-written the Benchmarking chapter of all three editions of the Hotel Asset Management textbook, taught a Hotel Asset Management course at Cornell University, is a frequent guest speaker at industry conferences and has appeared on CNBC and CNN to provide commentary on the hospitality and leisure industry.

Letter from the Editor

Welcome to the Hotel Asset Value Enhacement Edition of Hotel Asset Management Magazine. As Guest Editor-in Chief, I am proud to bring you a series of articles targeting drivers of hotel real estate value - operational best practices, optimizing contract encumbrances, and managing capital markets trends. I am lucky that in my day job, I get to work with over 100 hotel assets and 30 different brands and managers. The authors and I are constantly innovating to create more cash flow and value at our hotel asset management assignments, including applying the best practices outlined in this magazine. We are senior industry leaders in hotel asset management who are on the front line of these issues, thereby defining best practices and challenging industry norms for best in class results. Like the authors, there is nothing average about the article’s content and I expect that each will offer valuable insights and help make you think of how you can change an approach or process to enhance value at your hotel assets. Below is a brief summary of our authors:

  • Challenging the Industry Standard Paradigm to Management Contract Performance Tests - Peter Laack, Vice President, and Michelle Russo, CEO & Founder of hotelAVE
  • The Six Most Common Reasons for Delaying the Opening Date of a New Luxury Hotel - Alex Sogno, Founder and CEO of Global Asset Solutions
  • Managing the Total Hotel Investment Strategies to Maximize Owner Returns - Romy Bhojwani, Executive Vice President of hotelAVE
  • Beyond Benchmarking - Jordan Bell, Vice President, and David Butler, President of PostScript Hospitality
  • Market in Decline? - Silvie Cohen, Vice President, and Nina Kleiman, Executive Vice President of Asset Management of hotelAVE
  • 2020 Toolbox - Sarah Bartlett, Senior Vice President of Revenue Management of hotelAVE


Michelle Russo, CEO and Founder of hotelAVE
Email: mrusso@hotelave.com

About the Co-Publisher

Hotel Asset Value Enhancement (hotelAVE) is a leading independent real estate investment and asset manager providing a wide range of advisory services to owners and investors of hospitality assets.The company provides asset management services and operational consulting for private equity, institutional, family office, public, and sovereign wealth funds to improve performance and optimize value. The company’s unique approach and hands-on operating experience create superior value and above –market returns for hotel owners. hotelAVE has provided services on more than 1,000 hotels with 200,000 rooms representing over $150 billion of hotel real estate value. hotelAVE advisory services also include acquisition due diligence, underwriting, development, financing, manager selection, franchise agreements, repositioning, renovation,dispositions, and lender services.The company operates primarily in the Americas and is headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island, with offices in New York and Los Angeles (Orange County) and professionals also located in Chicago, Miami, and Washington, DC. Website: www.hotelave.com