Mr. McCaslin has 42 years of experience in the hospitality industry and is a Co-Founder of the original CapStar Hotel Company in 1987. CapStar operated primarily as a third party manager of upscale hotels until the early 1990s when, in partnership with an affiliate of Oak Hill Capital Partners, CapStar started a fund to acquire hotels. In August 1996, CapStar completed a successful IPO (NYSE: CHO) and continued its strategy of buying upscale hotels throughout North America. At that time, he was the Chief Operating Officer of CapStar and a member of its Board of Directors.
In August 1998, CapStar merged its ownership group with a Texas based REIT, American General Hospitality, and split its operating division into a separate company. Mr. McCaslin became President of the operating company, MeriStar Hotels and Resorts, Inc. (NYSE: MMH) and a member of its Board of Directors.
In 2001, Mr. McCaslin departed MeriStar to form Smilezzzz Hospitality, LLC with the intention of forming an entrepreneurial, boutique hotel company. In January 2002, Mr. McCaslin partnered with Gary Mendell and Steve Mendell of real estate investment firm HEI Hospitality (“HEI”) and became one of the four members of the HEI General Partnership. In 2004, HEI raised $274 million in HEI Hospitality Fund I, a hospitality-focused private equity fund which went on to profitability.
In 2007, Mr. McCaslin formed EAC Hospitality, a hospitality consulting firm focused on operational improvements and organizational reviews. During this time, Mr. McCaslin worked on several large hotel projects that were in distress and evaluated two companies for acquisitions or partnership opportunities with investment partners and consulted on the acquisition of the SLS Las Vegas and the founding of Virgin Hotels.
In 2009, after consulting with Northwood for over a year, Mr. McCaslin joined full time as President of the newly formed subsidiary Northwood Hospitality. The conversion of the Radisson Boston to The Revere led to Fortune magazine naming it one of the top 9 best new business hotels in the world. The $140,000,000 million dollar renovation of The New York Palace was completed on time and won several awards. The portfolio achieved an over $2 billion dollar valuation prior to a strategic liquidation where each realized investment had a 20% IRR or higher. The portfolio has 4 remaining assets, one of which is totally in the promote and two of which are partially refinanced.
In 2015, Mr. McCaslin joined HHM to oversee the startup of an investment strategy for the private operating company which could pursue deals not in the target zone of the public REIT. Since his start in mid-July of 2015, the company has completed 4 deals with two different private equity funds. The deals are located in Miami, Daytona Beach, Philadelphia and Cambridge.
Prior to co-founding CapStar, Mr. McCaslin served in various operating capacities for Lincoln Hotels, a division of Lincoln Property Company in Dallas, Texas and for Westin Hotels.
Mr. McCaslin graduated from the Foodservice and Lodging program at the University of Missouri-Columbia and was the first recipient of their distinguished alumni award.