Business Monday Briefs: Aspen Police Warn of Real Estate Fraud; new GM at Aspen Meadows; ACRA receives awards



APD: Beware of Real Estate Fraud

Aspen Police Department reported last week that there has been a recent trend of fraudulent reports targeting local real estate companies across Roaring Fork Valley.

Residents report threatening phone calls from Lt. Mike Tracy of Pitkin County. The fraudster states that Tracy currently has a valid arrest warrant for them. The fraudster reports that in order to avoid imprisonment, the citizen must immediately pay a large fine.

“This is a scam!” APD warned. “Do not divulge personal information and do not provide money to scammers!”

The Aspen Police Department recommends that people take the following precautions to avoid fraud:

• Register your phone number with the National Banned Calls Registry. You can register online or by calling 1-888-382-1222 (TTY: 1-866-290-4236). If you are still receiving telemarketing calls after registering, chances are high that these calls are scams.

• Beware of callers who claim to have won a prize or package.

• Hang up for suspicious phone calls.

• Be careful with your caller ID. Scammers can change the phone number that appears on your Caller ID screen. This is called spoofing.

• Do your own research on business opportunities, charities or travel packages offered by the caller.

APD warns that the following should also be avoided:

• Do not give in to pressure and do not be compelled to take immediate action.

• Do not say anything if the caller starts a conversation with the question: “Can you hear me?” This is a common scam tactic when you say yes. The scammers write down your answer “yes” and use it as proof that you have agreed to pay for your purchase or pay by credit card.

• Do not give the caller your credit card number, bank account information, or other personal information.

• Do not send money if the caller tells you to transfer money or pay with a prepaid debit card.

For more information, call APD at 970-920-5400.

Frank Kastelz

Aspen Meadows has appointed Frank Kastelz as its general manager.

Kastelz has over 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry in a variety of fields, from guest relations to operations and finance. He last served as interim general manager in the spring following Jude Hawk’s retirement.

“When I took on this temporary role, I had no intention of moving to Aspen, but I quickly became attached to the wonderful team and the potential of this special property,” Kastelz said. “As we focus on the continued impact of COVID-19 and begin to redefine who we are as a brand and destination, my plan is to lead with empathy. If the pandemic has taught us anything, it is that we need to take care of each other and join forces. “

Previously, Kastelz was the manager of the Tremont House Hotel, the Wyndham Grand Hotel in Galveston, Texas, and the integrated food and beverage director for three Wyndham hotels, including the iconic Hotel Galvez & Spa, the Wyndham Grand Hotel. He has worked with various Wyndham brands in roles such as General Manager of Wyndham Santa Monica At the Pier and COO of Wyndham San Diego Bayside.

ACRA receives awards

The Aspen Chamber Resorts Association (ACRA) was honored with two Destiny Council Destiny Awards in the Destination Site and Little-Known Road categories at the ESTO (Education Seminar for Tourism Organizations) conference on August 15-17.

Jessica Haight, ACRA’s Senior Marketing Manager, received the awards at the conference.

Jessica Hight from ACRA

Destiny Awards recognizes participants in U.S. travel destinations for excellence and creativity in marketing and promoting travel destinations locally and regionally; and foster the development of creative and innovative programs and activities to promote destinations. The awards were open to all DMOs or CVBs who are members of the United States Travel Association.

“We are delighted to receive both of these awards, but it is especially gratifying to receive recognition for one of our marketing initiatives to promote responsible tourism,” said Elisa Voss, VP of Marketing ACRA.

Business announcements, tips and story ideas can be sent to Rick Carroll at:


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