The Sheraton Universal hotel not only has a new management company, it also has a new general manager. As August came to a close, Destination Hotels & Resorts head Charlie Peck announced that his company had taken over management of the Sheraton Universal and that Peter Walterspiel would serve as GM. Destination, the Sheraton Universal’s new management company, is privately held and headquartered in suburban Denver. With more than 30 independent, luxury and upscale hotels, resorts and golf clubs, it is the fourth largest independent hospitality management company in the United States. The company is a subsidiary of Los Angeles-based investment, development and management firm Lowe Enterprises. A native of Germany, the new GM has spent the past seven years in Las Vegas, serving as vice president of operation for properties such as The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino and Wynn Las Vegas. In addition to transitioning the Sheraton Carlton in Washington D.C. to the St. Regis hotel, Walterspiel has worked for the Turnberry Isle Resort & Club in Florida, Hotel Nikko in San Francisco and Le Parker Meridien in New York. In January 2007, Lowe Enterprises Investors acquired the Sheraton Universal on behalf of an investment fund for $122 million. Though it is changing management, the Sheraton Universal will continue to be a Sheraton brand franchise property. Starwood Hotels & Resorts formerly ran the hotel. Destination head Peck discussed what the management company has in store for the Sheraton. “The Sheraton Universal has been one of the great landmark hotels in Los Angeles for corporate meetings, business and leisure travelers and the entertainment industry for years,” he stated. “With the dramatic $25 million upgrade of the interiors and functionality of the hotel nearly complete, we are anxious to reintroduce this property to many of our longtime customers as well as new leisure guests and business travelers.” Built in 1969 and expanded in 1978, the Sheraton Universal’s $25 million renovation includes a remodel and upgrade of guest rooms and bathrooms. The 451-room hotel will also feature new furniture, fixtures and flat screen televisions, in addition to new technology. A coffee shop has been added to the lobby and the hotel’s bar has been expanded. In Southern California, Destination also operates L’Auberge Del Mar and Estancia La Jolla Hotel and Spa in San Diego and Miramonte Resort & Spa in Palm Springs. Late next year, the company plans to open the 582-room Terranea Resort in Palos Verdes.