A local resident, Ashley grew up in Cashiers, and attended Western Carolina University where she majored in Business Administration and Law. In 2010, her career led her to Houston, Texas where she was an event planner/executive assistant for a successful energy hedge fund. After four years in the big city of Houston, the mountains called her home and she joined the Sales Team at Old Edwards Inn and Spa. Ashley not only brings event planning experience to Old Edwards, but also a deep, intimate knowledge of the area. This familiarity is a crucial asset when planning an event here. Ashley enjoys the summer trips to Montana, hanging out with friends, and quality time with her husband and daughter.
Sarah originally from Dublin, Georgia moved with her family to the Northeast Georgia Mountains in high school. After graduating high school, Sarah attended the University of North Georgia where she obtained her Bachelor's degree in Marketing. After graduation, Sarah found herself in the hospitality industry at The Dillard House and was quickly promoted to Sales Manager. After 4 years, Sarah made the move to Old Edwards Inn & Spa and has loved every minute since!
Leslie is joining Old Edwards Inn as a Sales Manager with over 15 years of event and meeting planning experience. She has planned events in social, corporate, and academic settings, and finds the use of creativity and operational skills very gratifying. Originally from Winter Park, FL, Leslie received her Bachelor of Science degree from Florida State University--making her a true Tallahassee Lassie and a big fan of the ACC. She enjoys throwing themed parties, cooking and creating new recipes, as well as her lifelong hobby of sewing.
Kyle W. Merritt
Kyle is a native of Savannah Georgia, where his family has been welcoming guests for generations and were instrumental in building the Hospitality Industry. In 2017, after working for more than a decade at some of the premier properties in the Low Country, he decided to bring his life-long passion of service to his beloved Highlands and Old Edwards Inn and Spa.
As a native of Lexington, Kentucky, Elizabeth has been visiting Highlands since childhood. With interest in special events at a young age, she moved to Charleston, South Carolina where she obtained her Event & Hospitality Management degree from the Culinary Institute of Charleston. After eight years of working as a banquet captain and for leading event planners, she decided to broaden her horizons and move to South Florida to work in the yachting industry. Wanting to move back to land and be closer to her family, Elizabeth became our newest team member in July 2019. In her off-time, Elizabeth enjoys golfing, horseback riding, gardening, and studying for her Sommelier II exam.
Rina was born in Honduras to an American father and Honduran mother. After the family returned to the USA in 2002, they lived in LA for years and eventually found their way to North Carolina. Before joining the Old Edwards team in 2017, Rina worked as a tax preparation software specialist for Drake Software. Growing up bilingual and multicultural has provided her with a unique skill set that includes acute attention to detail, a strong sense of organization and a gift for customer satisfaction. After beginning as a front desk agent for both Old Edwards and 200 Main, Rina quickly rose through the ranks to a supervisory position. While serving as concierge, she built up her knowledge of resort operations and guest expectations and enjoys sharing all she has learned. Rina's love of hiking and budding photography skills have provided a deep familiarity with the attractions available in our beautiful mountains and support her ultimate goal of providing the best experience for our guests.
Assistant Reservations Manager
Amanda, originally from Florida, spent her early years vacationing to Highlands and has always considered it home. While studying Hospitality Management at Florida State, Amanda completed an internship at the Spa. After graduating, she joined the Spa team at Old Edwards full time, and quickly became the Spa Sales Coordinator. A few years later, Amanda graduated from the Manager in Training program, where she fell in love with Front Desk Operations. Amanda is currently the Assistant Reservations and Revenue Manager. When given the opportunity to work with the Spa and our wonderful brides once again, she was delighted!
Group Reservations Manager
Laura has a variety of talents within her skill set. This is, in part, due to studying a wide range of subjects—including travel & tourism and merchandising—before earning her degree in criminal justice. After moving back to Franklin with her family, Laura joined Old Edwards as a front desk agent. Her attention to detail made her a perfect candidate for the reservations department, which she helped establish in 2005. Laura has since branched out into helping with events and has earned the title of Group Reservations Supervisor. As such, she likes to put all of her efforts into making sure that every facet of an event's reservation process is taken into account, so that hosts (and their guests!) can relax and enjoy their experience at Old Edwards.