Rental Escapes hires Fernandez as CMO

Canada: Full-service luxury villa company Rental Escapes has announced the hiring of Willie Fernandez as its chief marketing officer.

The appointment comes from the company’s initiative to increase brand awareness and drive new marketing strategies, leveraging Fernandez’s 15+ years of experience in the field.

Effective immediately, Fernandez will be in charge of Rental Escapes’ marketing initiatives and global brand strategy, as well as managing the product teams assigned to the company’s system of villa suppliers and travel advisor partners.

Brian Schwimmer, chief executive officer and co-founder of Rental Escapes, said: “At Rental Escapes, we are committed to providing personalised service to our guests and our travel advisor partners, leading to unforgettable vacation experiences. We are laser-focused on accelerating our brand awareness in the year ahead and communicating our breadth of offerings to ensure we maintain a thoughtful growth trajectory, and we are thrilled to have someone of Willie’s calibre and background onboard to help lead the charge.

“Willie will be instrumental in directing our brand strategy and expanding our footprint across the globe,” he added.

Having first entered the travel marketing field as a manager for the inside sales department at Norwegian Cruise Line, Fernandez went on to found his own cruise agency and join CruisePath Network, a cruise distribution software industry. During his tenure, he created two of the company’s central products and spearheaded its D2C online booking technology for travel.

Following that, Fernandez was vice president of cruise and e-commerce for Travel Leader Groups, where he was responsible for starting the company’s first e-commerce site and raising sales by more than $50 million during the course of three years. Latterly, he was Vice President and general manager of World Travel Holding, assisting in forming its strategy for luxury villa rental division, Villas of Distinction.

Fernandez said: “Since 1991, I have had the privilege to work in an industry that I am so passionate about, and that really is a blessing. I am thrilled to join Rental Escapes’ team and could not imagine a better place to take this next step in my career, as the company stands poised for outstanding growth in the years ahead.

“I look forward to making an impact on the Rental Escapes brand, elevating our awareness and providing our travel partners, and customers, with unbeatable travel experiences and benefits around the world,” he added.