President, Hotel Operations - Asia Pacific
“There’s no question in my mind that our brand is strong and our people are the best. But we must always continue to reach higher, innovate further, and surprise and delight our guests at every turn.”
With responsibility for Four Seasons operations throughout the Asia Pacific region, Rami Sayess oversees a growing portfolio of hotels, resorts and residences as the company continues to strengthen its presence across the region.
With extensive operational experience as a Regional Vice President and General Manager, Rami is leveraging his expertise to lead property teams in their pursuit of excellence, evolving product and service offerings to cater to international travellers while celebrating local culture and diversity in every location where Four Seasons operates.
“While our industry has been challenged in recent years, it’s opened our minds to new ideas, particularly in how we find and nurture talent. Leadership works both ways. I find that happy employees are those who feel supported and empowered to be flexible and take chances. I truly work with the best colleagues in the world and am inspired by them every day.”
Now overseeing the dynamic APAC region which is key to the brand’s future growth, Rami sees potential everywhere. Armed with both extensive data and insights and a culture that puts human connections first, Rami believes no matter how big the dream, vision will continue to become reality.
- At Four Seasons: Joined the company in 2005 as Hotel Manager in Amman, before moving to Riyadh as General Manager in 2007; spent three years at the former Four Seasons in Bangkok, where he was promoted to Regional Vice President before taking on the same role in Doha, Beirut and most recently Bahrain. Rami was promoted to his current position in 2023, based in Singapore.
- Early career: 15 years in progressive positions at leading hotel companies in Europe, Africa and the Middle East.
- Education: Diploma in Hotel Management, Les Roches Hotel School, Switzerland; Certification in Hospitality Management (PDP) & General Managers Program (GMP) at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York.
- Moment of clarity: Rami was stationed at Four Seasons in Beirut in 2020 when disaster struck the capital of his home country. “In those first moments we had no idea where the explosion had happened, or the extent of its impact. All we could think of was getting our guests and employees to safety. I’ll never forget the way people came together. That even included an employee we’d recently had to let go due to the pandemic, who rushed to lend a hand; that’s true empathy and genuine heart, right there.”
- Advice to young people as they embark on their careers: “Do your best in whatever position you are in now, and don’t forget to enjoy it. When you look back on your career, the stories from those early days are the ones you will tell.”
- A new era: Having worked in 16 countries and travelled the world with three children who are now adults, Rami and his wife are alone for the first time in decades. “When I told my wife, I’d been presented with a new opportunity, she thought we were heading to Dubai. When I asked if she’d like to move back to Asia, just the two of us this time, her response was a very enthusiastic yes.”