News & Announcements

Leland Lewis Named General Manager of Chautauqua Hotel Company, Inc.

Chautauqua Institution President Michael E. Hill today announced the appointment of Leland M. Lewis as general manager of Chautauqua Hotel Company, Inc., which includes the historic Athenaeum Hotel and all of the Institution’s dining and lodging services, effective Nov. 12. An experienced senior executive in the hospitality industry, Lewis has served as interim general manager since August.

As general manager, Lewis is responsible for all aspects of the Chautauqua Hotel Company’s operations, including delivery of an exceptional guest experience. In partnership with Chautauqua Institution leadership, and in support of and service to the Chautauqua mission, he serves as the primary strategic business leader while directing and mentoring a team to assure the highest level of service and performance. In the interim role, Lewis had already made a number of operational and strategic changes at the Athenaeum Hotel, including experimenting with regular fall hours at the hotel’s new lobby lounge and enhancing the building’s physical aesthetic and amenities. He also was charged with leading searches to hire for several key leadership positions within the hotel’s staff.


“From the moment Leland arrived at Chautauqua earlier this year, it was clear that his vast industry experience and his deep appreciation for the role Chautauqua Institution plays in the region were exactly what we needed for our hospitality brand and for the Institution as a whole,” Hill said. “We are overjoyed that Leland has accepted our invitation to become the permanent GM, and we look forward to welcoming him to the year-round Chautauqua team.”

Lewis has served in leadership roles in the hospitality industry for more than 30 years, most recently as general manager of the historic Down Town Association in New York City. Previously, he was general manager at New York's historic 1,015-room Roosevelt Hotel — deemed the “Grand Dame of Madison Avenue” — and, before that, executive director of patient support services for Cleveland Clinic, where he was recruited by the CEO to translate expertise of hospitality and guest services to enterprise-wide clinic operations.

Prior to his most recent appointments, Lewis worked in a variety of capacities for InterContinental Hotels, beginning in 1983 as director of sales and marketing for The Barclay in New York City, where he later returned as general manager from 2005 to 2009. In the interim, Lewis held key positions at various properties including general manager at InterContinental New Orleans, opening team for InterContinental Montreal, executive assistant manager for InterContinental Toronto, and general manager for three properties owned by the Cleveland Clinic, including InterContinental Suites, Cleveland Clinic Guest House, and InterContinental Hotel and Conference Center, where he was the opening GM. His early-career experience includes positions at The Ritz Carlton Four Seasons at Watertower Place in Chicago, the Four Seasons Clift in San Francisco and Four Seasons in New York at The Pierre. 

“I’m incredibly excited about this opportunity — I love the environment that Chautauqua provides, and I love being involved with a hotel that’s on its way to reaching its full potential,” Lewis said. “I look forward to working with this talented team as we continue to restore the Athenaeum, physically and in terms of guest service, as a hotel worthy of its remarkable history.” 

The pre-eminent expression of lifelong learning in the United States, Chautauqua Institution comes alive each summer with a unique mix of fine and performing arts, lectures, interfaith worship and programs, and recreational activities. Over the course of nine weeks, more than 100,000 people visit Chautauqua and participate in programs, classes and community events for all ages — all within the beautiful setting of a historic lakeside village. As a community, we celebrate, encourage and study the arts and treat them as integral to all of learning, and we convene the critical conversations of the day to advance understanding through civil dialogue. 

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