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Laurence Geller CBE
Laurence Geller CBE is a leading expert in the fields of hospitality, specialised education and dementia care. He is a British-born, UK and US based property investor, author and philanthropist.
He is Chairman of Geller Capital Partners, the Chicago-based private real estate investment platform focused on placing capital in the hospitality and leisure industries. In 2015 he acquired the Waldorf Astoria Chicago, repositioned and upgraded the Marriott Georgetown in 2016, and opened the Conrad in Chicago in 2017.
He started his career as a "hotel busboy" in Switzerland at the age of 15. He emigrated to the US in 1976, where he first worked for Holiday Inns, serving as its Executive Vice President. He subsequently served as the Chief Operating Officer of Hyatt Development Corporation. Laurence has served as Director of Grand Metropolitan Hotels in London. He was the founder and CEO of the foremost multinational high-end hotel owning company, Strategic Hotels & Resorts from 1997 to 2012, which, from 2004, was traded on the New York Stock Exchange.
Laurence has long-held associations with the University of West London in the UK, graduating from the School of Catering when it was Ealing Technical College. In 2010 he received an honorary doctorate; and installed as Chancellor in 2011. In 2016 the University changed the name of its 70-year-old Hospitality College to the London Geller College of Hospitality and Tourism.
Laurence is Chairman of Innovative Aged Care, a London specialist care home company which opened its first luxury home in Chelsea in 2017. He is also a leading expert in the area of dementia care and currently serves as Ambassador for the Alzheimer’s Society.
Laurence is the long-time Chairman of the International Churchill Society and in 2015, he donated $1,000,000 to digitalise the Winston S. Churchill Archives and to have specially developed learning modules available without charge to school children throughout the World.
Laurence has personally donated more than $20 million, while additionally raising in excess of $30 million cumulatively, to a variety of humanitarian, cultural and civic causes over the years and has held many charitable, civic and business positions, directorships and roles both in the US and UK.
Geller is the author of two thrillers about hotels, Do Not Disturb and The Last Resort and has authored over 100 published professional articles. He was made Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE) by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in the 2012 UK New Year’s Honours List.
He currently resides in London and Chicago and has three grown children and eight grandchildren.