Trica Jean-Baptiste Jean-Baptiste: “We arewell-equipped to match investors with hospitality assets in-linewith their investment goals.”

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NEW YORK CITY—Level Group—a commercial and residential realestate brokerage firm—has created an in-house hospitality team,known as Morgensheer Hospitality at Level Group. The enterprise isheaded up by hospitality industry veterans Trica Jean-Baptiste andJan Kalanda.

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With combined experience of over 55 years in the hospitalityindustry, Jean-Baptiste and Kalanda bring expertise in-house acrossa number of the field's areas, including property development,construction, hotel operations, sales, marketing, branding,understanding of key market segments, tour and travel, and traveltrade.

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Jean-Baptiste is a 22-year veteran of the hospitality industry,specializing in marketing, communications and branding. She hasworked in-house—and provided agency representation—for brands suchas Doral Hotels & Resorts, Le Parker Meridien, and CendantCorp.'s (now Wyndham Hotels) Days Inns; Rocco Forte Hotels &Resorts; Michelangelo Hotel New York; Hotel Esprit St-Germain,Paris; Ragosta Hotels Collection, Amalfi Coast, Italy; Terme diSaturnia Spa & Golf Resort, Tuscany, Italy; the ScottishBusiness Tourism Unit and the Government of Dubai TourismAuthority.

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Jan Kalanda Kalanda's 32-year hospitalitycareer includes developing and launching the GansevoortHotels.

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Kalanda's 32-year hospitality career includes developing andlaunching the Gansevoort Hotels, which now are in New York, Miamiand Turks & Caicos. As an EVP and founding member of HK Hotels,he directed the development, design, pre-opening and ongoingoperation of numerous hotels, including Aria Hotel in Prague, CzechRepublic and Hotel Giraffe in New York. Kalanda began hishospitality career as chief engineer at the Garden City Hotel, inthe Garden City section of Long Island.

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The team's worldwide network within the hospitality industry ofowners, operators, investors and vendors opens up multiple avenuesto off-market opportunities, in which Morgensheer already isengaged in the New York and the Caribbean markets.

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“Recent market trends, including the over-developed New YorkCity hotel market, suggest that the hospitality real estate sectoris ripe for expert brokerage services tailored to the hospitalityindustry,” says Michael Greenberg, CEO and general counsel, LevelGroup. “We are excited and proud to offer this unique capability tothe hospitality industry led by such well-known and respectedhospitality industry professionals.”

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Adds Jean-Baptiste “What's key for hoteliers and investors isthat Jan and I thoroughly understand the business of hospitalityand are well-equipped to strategically match investors withhospitality assets that are in-line with their investmentgoals.”

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She continues, “Important to hoteliers is our practice ofconfidentiality, understanding that operations and business ofhotels are of the utmost importance during the process ofidentifying the appropriate buyer. We want to ensure productivityand profitability as we assist owners and investors in theirefforts to both identify the appropriate investor andinvestment.”

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“We are fortunate to have found a home with Level Group, whichis known for delivering exceptional transactions and building longterm relationships,” notes Kalanda. “Morgensheer Hospitality atLevel Group is committed to delivering that same experience for thehospitality industry.”

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Rayna Katz

Rayna Katz is a seasoned business journalist whose extensive experience includes coverage of the lodging sector, travel and the culinary space. She was most recently content director for a business-to-business publisher, overseeing four publications. While at Meeting News, a travel trade publication, she received a Best Reporting award for a story on meeting cancellations in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina.