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Meet the Team

Geolo Leadership

Collectively offering years of diverse industry experience and proprietary knowledge, Geolo's expertise in the hospitality sector is best measured by the numerous long-term, successful partnerships the firm has forged around the globe. 

John Pritzker

Founding Partner and Director

Tom Gottlieb

Emeritus Managing General Partner

Omar Palacios

COO, CFO & Partner

Hector Calderon

Chief Investment Officer & Partner

John Greene

Controller

Jennifer Lande

EA/Office Manager

Brad Nichols

Principal

Jeffrey Reinstein

Principal

Ben Gottlieb

Principal

Erik Pampel

SVP of Development & Construction

Jake Michaels

Vice President

Cindy Zhou

Senior Associate

Jeremy Blaustein

Associate

Cynthia Lim

Administrative Support

John Pritzker

Founding Partner and Director

John Pritzker is Founding Partner and Director of Geolo Capital, where he oversees all sectors of the San Francisco-based private equity and investment firm. John began his career at Hyatt Hotels Corporation in 1972, and in 1984 became Managing Director and Divisional Vice President of Hyatt Hotels and Resorts. He was a founding board member of Ticketmaster, Inc. and Chemdex/Ventro Corporation.

Most recently, John orchestrated the merger of Joie de Vivre Hospitality, Thompson Hotels and Alila Hotels to form Commune Hotels Resorts. In January 2016, Commune Hotels and Destination Hotels merged, creating Two Roads Hospitality. The newly formed company spanned seven countries, with five hospitality brands and over 97 hotels. In December 2018, Hyatt Hotels Corp. agreed to acquire Two Roads Hospitality. Additionally, John has served as Chairman and CEO of a number of businesses in the hospitality industry, including Red Sail Sports, Mandara Spa, and The Odyssey Club (now Exclusive Resorts).

John is Chairman of the John Pritzker Family Fund; whose mission is to help people lead fulfilling and healthy lives in vibrant communities. John serves on the Executive Council of UCSF Health and the Board of Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where he chairs the Visiting Committee on Modern and Contemporary Art. He is also a board member of the Bernard Osher Foundation, a member of the Emeritus Board of Tipping Point Community, and a past president of the San Francisco Jewish Community Federation.

Tom Gottlieb

Managing General Partner

Tom Gottlieb is the Co-Founder and Emeritus Managing General Partner of Geolo Capital, the San Francisco-based private equity and investment firm. With more than 30 years of investment banking, real estate development and hospitality experience, Gottlieb directs Geolo's private equity investments, real estate projects and hospitality operations.

After graduating from the University of Michigan and Stanford University, Gottlieb began his career in investment banking and finance in Chicago, New York and Hong Kong. He subsequently became involved in hospitality real estate development in the US and in Asia. Prior to joining Geolo Capital, he served as a founding partner and Chief Investment Officer for the InterPacific Group, a leading international investment and real estate development firm. He also co-founded and served as Chief Executive Officer of Mandara Spa, which grew under his leadership to become the leading international luxury spa operator with over 70 spas throughout the world.

Gottlieb currently serves on the board of Sonoma Gourmet, Fra-Mani and Exclusive Resorts. He is a former trustee of the Nature Conservancy in Hawaii.

Omar Palacios

Chief Operations Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Partner

Omar Palacios is Chief Operating Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Partner of Geolo Capital where he oversees Geolo's strategic, organizational, asset management and finance activities. Palacios is a member of Geolo's investment committee.

Palacios has previous experience in key leadership functions of finance, treasury, accounting and corporate development and transactions. Additionally, Palacios has extensive transaction experience in structuring and capital raising initiatives in both the private and public markets.

Prior to joining Geolo, Palacios served as Chief Financial Officer for Playa Hotels & Resorts where he led the company's refinancing and recapitalization efforts. Additionally, he served as Chief Financial Officer for One&Only Resorts and held various key titles within the finance, treasury and investor relations sectors at One&Only's parent company Kerzner International, where he led the company's capital financing initiatives in a $3.6 billion public-to-private transaction.

Palacios is a member of the University of Miami's President Council and the Dean's Advisory Board of Rosen College of Hospitality Management at the university of Central Florida. Additionally, he is a member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and serves on ULI's Hotel Development Council. Palacios graduated from the University of Miami with a Bachelor of Business Administration with an emphasis in accounting.

Hector Calderon

Chief Investment Officer and Partner

Hector Calderon is the Chief Investment Officer and Partner at Geolo Capital. Calderon oversees the acquisitions team and overall investment strategy for Geolo.

Previously, Calderon was Managing Director and a member of the Investment Committee at Encore Capital Management. While at Encore he led an investment team focused on real estate investments in the Western US. The portfolio consisted of 30 multi-family, single-family and mixed used developments in Portland, Sacramento, Arizona, the San Francisco Bay Area and Southern California, representing $500M in asset value and 3,700+ housing units.

Prior to joining Encore, Calderon ran the Homebuilding Investment Banking group of JMP Securities where he served as an advisor in homebuilding mergers and acquisitions and capital markets transactions. Previously, Calderon worked as a consultant to Pacific Gas and Electric through its Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Calderon started his career as an investment banker in the Mergers and Acquisitions group at Thomas Weisel Partners. He is a member of the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and serves on ULI's Multi-Family Council.

Calderon holds an AB in economics from Stanford University and is a member of the Stanford Real Estate Council.

John Greene

Controller

As Controller of Geolo and the related family office since 2008, John works closely with the management team on overall financial management and budgeting, facilitates information flow with lenders and portfolio investments. He also oversees the general accounting function. Before joining Geolo, John worked as Controller in the multi-family office at Seiler LLP, and prior to that, as an Assistant Controller of the family office at the Fremont Group. His experience also includes accounting and finance positions at United Parcel Service.

Greene graduated from San Francisco State University with a B.S. in Business Administration (with a Concentration in Accounting) and he holds an M.S. in Finance from Golden Gate University.

Jennifer Lande

EA/Office Manager

Jennifer Lande joined Geolo Capital in 2011 as Office Manager and Executive Assistant. She brings her diverse experience in Office Management, Human Resources and Hospitality to Geolo Capital. She assists in the development of firm policies and procedures; manages and oversees the administration of HR policies, programs and practices within the firm, and provides day-to-day support to the team. Prior to Geolo Capital, Lande was with Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts for 11 years, and was the Director of Food & Beverage at the Four Seasons San Francisco. In addition to her hotel operations experience, she managed several independent restaurants. Lande studied Hospitality Management at the University of Nevada Las Vegas.

Brad Nichols

Principal

Brad is responsible for Geolo's capital investment and improvement programs, both for the existing property portfolio and our new development opportunities. Prior to joining Geolo, Nichols held the position of Vice President, Development at WeWork where he oversaw new product development and construction for WeLive, the international start-up's co-living brand. Previously, Nichols served as the Head of Development at AJ Capital Partners where he successfully managed the design, construction, and opening efforts for a diverse portfolio of boutique hotel, restaurant, and office assets.

Nichols brings a broad background in capital programming and project management to Geolo, having spent six years with Jones Lang LaSalle in Chicago, IL and two with Lend Lease in Oahu, HI. He received an MBA with a concentration in Finance from DePaul University's Kellstadt Graduate School of Business and a BS in Industrial Management & Engineering from the University of Cincinnati.

Jeffrey Reinstein

Principal

Jeffrey brings a wealth of development experience - especially in the boutique and lifestyle hotel spaces - to his Principal role on the acquisitions and development team. His responsibilities include overseeing and originating new investments in hospitality, multi-family and real estate technology sectors. Prior to joining Geolo, Reinstein held several positions at Geolo's legacy hospitality business, which was sold to Hyatt in 2018: Two Roads Hospitality, previously known as Commune Hotels + Resorts. While at Commune, Reinstein served as the Senior Director of Acquisitions and Development where his primary responsibilities included sourcing, acquiring and negotiating management contracts and investment opportunities for each of Commune's unique hotel brands.

Previously, Reinstein worked with Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants on the Acquisitions and Development team, evaluating new opportunities for private equity real estate funds and third-party management agreements.

Reinstein graduated from Cornell University with a B.S. from the School of Hotel Administration.

Ben Gottlieb

Principal

Ben Gottlieb is Geolo Capital's Head of Asset Management and Credit. His responsibilities include overseeing asset management and capital market activities for Geolo Capital's portfolio of equity investments in hospitality real estate and originating new debt and preferred equity investments.

Prior to joining Geolo Capital, Ben was the Vice President of Acquisitions at AJ Capital Partners and one of the founders of Graduate Hotels®. While at AJ Capital, Ben was responsible for the acquisition, financing and redevelopment of 10 hotels across the country. Ben began his career in Tokyo with Morgan Stanley Real Estate where he covered the firm's private equity real estate investments in Asia Pacific and Europe.

Ben received an MBA from Cornell University's Johnson School and holds a BA from the University of Michigan.

Erik Pampel

SVP of Development & Construction

Erik Pampel is a full-solution real estate professional with over 20 years of experience in an array of real estate development properties, lease negotiations, and construction management across North America. Prior to joining Geolo, Pampel was a Real Estate Team Leader for Oracle where he oversaw the development, design and construction of multiple office, lab and data center sites, including Oracle's award winning, state-of-the art campus in Austin, Texas. Previously, Pampel served as Vice President of Development at Mesirow Financial Real Estate where he managed due diligence and design on new sites as well as design, development, program management and construction of a diverse portfolio of office, restaurant and retail assets.

Pampel brings a broad background in project management and construction to Geolo, having spent seven years with Rudolph & Sletten in San Francisco, CA and one with Pepper Construction in Chicago, IL. He holds a degree in Civil Engineering and a degree in Meteorology from Valparaiso University.

Jake Michaels

Vice President

Jake Michaels holds the position of Vice President at Geolo, focused on new multi-family, hospitality, and real estate technology investment opportunities across Geolo's acquisitions and development platform along with strategic, firm-level financial analysis and forecasting. Michaels joined Geolo from the Real Estate Syndicated Finance Team at Wells Fargo Securities, where he worked as an Investment Banking Associate and closed approximately 110 transactions, representing $33 billion in volume across all real estate asset classes over four years at the bank. Prior to his tenure at Wells Fargo, Michaels gained internship experience in hotel acquisitions, development, and operations with premier hospitality firms, such as The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company.

Michaels graduated from Cornell University with a B.S. from the School of Hotel Administration.

Cindy Zhou

Senior Associate

Cindy Zhou holds the position of Senior Associate at Geolo, and is primarily focused on asset managing Geolo's real estate investment portfolio. Zhou joined Geolo from AJ Capital Partners, where she worked as an Asset Management Associate on AJ Capital's legacy hotel portfolio, as well as on the Graduate Hotels platform. Prior to her tenure at AJ Capital, Zhou spent three years as an Analyst at LaSalle Hotel Properties, where she worked on both asset management and acquisitions for a portfolio of 47 hotels. She has also worked as an intern for Thayer Lodging Group and RLJ Lodging Trust.

Zhou graduated from Cornell University with a B.S. from the School of Hotel Administration.

Jeremy Blaustein

Associate

Jeremy Blaustein is an Associate on Geolo Capital's Acquisition and Development Team. In this role Blaustein focuses on equity and credit investment opportunities across Geolo's many areas of expertise, while assisting with firm-level financial, strategic, and forecasting initiatives. Blaustein joined Geolo Capital from JMP Securities, where he was an Investment Banking Senior Analyst in their Real Estate & Financial Services Group. At JMP Securities Blaustein helped execute numerous M&A transactions and completed over 30 capital raises, in both the public and private sectors. Prior to his time at JMP, Blaustein completed internships in private equity and asset management with Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors and Raymond James Financial.

Blaustein graduated from the University of Southern California with a B.S. in Business Administration from the Marshall School of Business.