Vice President of Construction
for a resort development

A leading national developer, manager and financier of premier real estate properties retained Helbling to secure a Vice President of Construction for an extensive $2.5B resort development in Colorado. The position required a professional who was extremely self-motivated and strategic, and who had experience in managing large projects in excess of $400M. The individual secured had been instrumental in running the New York City operation of a leading construction management firm for 20 years. He applied his expertise to our client's mountain development, and the resort opened one month ahead of schedule.

Our client, based in New York, was seeking a Vice President of Construction to lead all aspects of construction efforts for a Colorado resort development, estimated at a total value of $2.5B, and consisting of multiple hotel, commercial, and mixed-use projects. In addition to managing numerous active construction jobs, ensuring their completion within schedule and budget, this individual would also be required to act as a liaison with development and community relations teams to ensure all issues were resolved prior to the scheduled start of construction projects.

This position required an individual who was extremely self-motivated and strategic, had experience managing projects in excess of $400M, was knowledgeable of the extreme and unique site conditions associated with building a mountain resort, and had the ability to sequence the contractors, vendors, materials ordering, and logistics, giving consideration to the secluded location of the project.

To find possible candidates with the unique background required for this role, Helbling developed a plan to target national construction firms that do major hospitality and mixed-use work, local Colorado construction firms, national residential firms with resort or urban oriented divisions, national hotel companies with resort or timeshare divisions, and major developers and owners of ski resorts.

We also developed a list of senior contacts with experience in the hospitality arena for recommendations and referrals. Due to our firm’s experience and knowledge of the construction and development industry, we were acquainted with an individual we had known for almost 20 years and knew to be one of the most talented people in the field. We brought this candidate into the recruitment process early, and he so impressed the client in his initial and subsequent interviews that he was hired in just over a month.

The individual we helped our client to secure began his career as a field superintendent, and later became instrumental in running the New York City operation of one of the leading construction management firms in the country. In his over 20-year career with that company, he became President of the Western Region. His passion for the outdoors and experience in the western states dovetailed nicely toward the position with our client to build a ski resort in a small Colorado town. Growing up and working for much of his career in the New York metro area allowed him to relate well to a New York development firm.

Shortly after joining the project, this individual worked to build relationships with the development and construction team, as well as with the local people and officials of the town. One component of the project was the construction of a luxury resort hotel, which the Vice President of Construction was successful in completing under budget and ahead of schedule. His leadership, cooperative attitude, and scheduling abilities allowed for sufficient training and orientation, resulting in a smooth transition from construction to operations. Although the initial goal was to open for the Christmas and New Year’s holidays, his team was able to advance the schedule for a seamless Thanksgiving Day opening.

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This position required an individual who was extremely self-motivated and strategic, had experience managing projects in excess of $400M, was knowledgeable of the extreme and unique site conditions associated with building a mountain resort, and had the ability to sequence the contractors, vendors, materials ordering, and logistics, giving consideration to the secluded location of the project. The construction of a luxury resort hotel was one component of the project, which the VP was successful in completing under budget and ahead of schedule.
Marc Datz, Regional Manager - Midwest

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