Jay Michael Pecotte is a Senior Design and Brand Executive specializing in hospitality projects as well as theme park design. He is a forward-thinking design professional with strengths in creating, developing and building authentic, imaginative and immersive guest environments that meet companies’ operational, financial and schedule goals. Hospitality projects include hotels of up to 1800 rooms as well as theme park projects valued at ~$400M. Jay leads all aspects of design teams to create a unique guest experience for both interior and exterior designs from initial concept to project completion and ongoing asset management. He has a strong knowledge of trends, technology, construction materials, building methods and building codes.
As Senior Vice President of Development for Katmandu Group, Jay is responsible for evaluation of potential sites for expansion; overall site layout and design; specific site and attraction configuration and design; preparation and supervision of bid documents and evaluation and selection of vendors; and the construction of facilities and attractions. He is also charged with developing new opportunities for Katmandu growth, as well as other assignments consistent with this position.
Prior to joining Katmandu Group, Jay spent over 12 years in development for Hard Rock International. As Senior Director of Development, Jay oversaw the pre-development, development and design for Hard Rock hotels, resorts and casinos in the Americas. He led the internal and external project teams for all new build, adaptive reuse developments, conversions and capex renovations in his territory.
Bringing over 25 plus years of experience in hospitality design and branding, Jay’s interactive design leadership balances the multiple objectives of maximizing the quality of guests’ experience with support of the operators’ efficiency and the owners’ ROI.
Before Hard Rock, Jay spent 9 years at Universal Studios, Florida overseeing design and development of many theme park attractions including The Mummy, MIB, Shrek, Jimmy Neutron, KidZone, T2, and Twister along with multiple kiosks, graphics programs, retail and restaurant renovations.
Earlier in his career, Jay worked on various hospitality projects around the globe for such firms as Jordan Mozer and Associates, VOA and Shenkel Shultz Architecture.
He is a frequent speaker at hospitality industry and special interest conferences and has been on several award-winning project teams of hospitality, theme park, commercial and residential design.
He holds a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Illinois @ Chicago and an Associate in Arts degree in Architecture from Lansing Community College. Originally from Marquette in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, Jay first became interested in architecture growing up with renowned architect John Lautner’s grandson and spending time in the local Frank Lloyd Wright designed house, ‘Deertrack Village’.