Donn Takahashi, president of Prince Resorts Hawaii, will retirement on March 31 after 25 years with the company
Prince Resorts operates three luxury properties: Prince Waikiki on Oahu, and two on Hawaii Island, the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel, which will shortly be rebranded as The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort, and the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel.
Kisan Jo, vice president of finance and administration for Prince Resorts, will be promoted to president. For a smoother transition, Takahashi will serve in a senior advisory role through March 2019.
Takahashi has spent 46 years in the hospitality industry, previously serving as vice president of sales and marketing for Prince Resorts. He took over as president in 2004 after former Hawaii Governor George Ariyoshi left the role.
During his 14-year tenure as president, Takahashi oversaw hotel and golf course operations, real estate and other subsidiary companies, and $250 million in hotel renovations.
"There are two things that showcase success and a great leader," Ariyoshi said in a statement. "One is the numbers they tell the story. In this instance, numbers include higher hotel earnings and occupancy. The other is how you begin that effort the importance of the people who work for you. Donn understands and excels in both of these. He makes everyone feel important, because they are. He knows and teaches that one must always cherish relationships, because the feel-good emotion is what will keep people coming back. The Prince Hawaii Resorts team has been very fortunate to have Donn as their leader."
Takahashi began his career as a bellman at The Westin St. Francis in San Francisco after graduating from University of California, Los Angeles. He worked his way up to senior assistant manager, and eventually transferred to be executive assistant manager at The Westin Ilikai Hotel in Honolulu. Prior to joining Prince Resorts, Takahashi was general manager at the Stouffer Wailea Beach Resort on Maui for six years.
"It has been an enormous privilege to lead Prince Resorts Hawaii during an important period of transformation," said Takahashi.
Jo began his career at Deloitte, an international public accounting firm in Seoul, before moving to Deloitte's Honolulu office. During his eight years at Prince Resorts Hawaii, he was responsible for the development of financial management strategies and supervised the finance and operations units.
"This is an opportunity of a lifetime, and I look forward leading a team that is so focused on continually reimagining and improving the visitor experience," Jo said in the statement. "Prince Resorts Hawaii is positioned for incredible opportunities ahead. My goal is to continue cementing each hotel as a leader in the industry."