Meet The Team

Michael Unanue
Director of Sales and Marketing

As the Director of Sales & Marketing at Water’s Edge Resort & Spa, Michael leads a world-class sales and marketing team while promoting the property that continues to set the benchmark of unparalleled luxury & uncompromised service here in Westbrook, Connecticut.

Michael began his hospitality career in Asheville NC at The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa (GPI). During the 12+ years he spent at GPI Michael got the hospitality bug and has never looked back. A considerable amount of knowledge was learnt hands on through the different positions he held in areas such as the Front Office, Housekeeping, Sales, Catering & Marketing. Michael then took that knowledge of the industry to a community role as the Vice President of Sales & Convention Services for the Roanoke Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau. Having a hunger to return to hotel life, Michael then relocated to Park City Utah where he spent 3.5 years as the Corporate Director of Group Sales leading the Group Sales & Marketing efforts for Stein Eriksen Lodge, Stein Residences, The Chateaux Deer Valley and The Residences at Chateaux Deer Valley.

He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Sociology from the State University of New York at Buffalo. In his spare time, he enjoys camping, gardening, mountain biking, boating, and hiking with his family.

Megan Brockwell
Sales & Marketing Assistant

Megan Brockwell is the Sales and Marketing Assistant at Water’s Edge Resort & Spa. She has a passion for hospitality and has been in the industry for over ten years. Megan is a CT shoreline native and loves living and working by the beach. When she is not the office she enjoys spending time with her husband and family.

Shelby Eriksson
Wedding Sales Manager

Shelby Eriksson is a Wedding Sales Manager at Water’s Edge Resort & Spa. Her passion for connecting with couples allows her to turn every vision into a unique celebration.

After earning her Bachelor’s degree in English at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky, she began work as the Front Desk Supervisor at the Louisville Marriott Downtown — the premier hotel for the Kentucky Derby. Beginning this path in Kentucky, Shelby was able to learn from the culture of outstanding hospitality and service the American South is so well known for. Here, Shelby was able to expand her knowledge about event coordinating through the elite clientele and diverse groups with which relationships were established and upheld. Her passion for hospitality emerged here, and flourishes still.

In 2018, Shelby returned to her home state of Connecticut to begin working at Water’s Edge. Soon after starting at the Front Desk, she was promoted to the Sales Department with the desire to work with couples to ensure their wedding dreams come true. Her favorite thing about selling and coordinating weddings at Water’s Edge is working with couples from start to finish, ensuring every wedding vision is brought to life.

Shelby’s favorite hobbies include trail running through local hiking spots, growing veggies in her garden, and discovering new, unique restaurants to try with her loved ones.

Emma Ferraro
Wedding and Social Sales Assistant 

Emma is getting her feet wet in the hospitality industry as our Wedding and Social Sales Assistant.  Her background is in media sales and marketing, coming to us from FOX61 in Hartford where she was a Multi-Media Sales Executive.  Before FOX61, Emma worked for CBS Radio in Farmington, where she began as the National Sales Coordinator and then promoted to an Account Executive.  With her experience working with different businesses across the state to meet their goals through custom marketing campaigns and always having a passion for the hospitality industry, we are excited to see her transfer her service skills over to Water’s Edge.

When Emma isn’t working, she enjoys going on adventures to new restaurants and coffee shops, teaching chunky knit blanket workshops, baking, and hanging at home with her husband, Chris.

Ariana Hershon
Wedding Sales Manager

Ariana is a California girl, born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. Growing up so close to wine country, she began her journey in the hospitality industry 10 years ago with PlumpJack Wineries in Oakville California. During that time, while studying business administration at the University of San Francisco, she fine-tuned her skills in management, leadership and business. Ariana then decided it was time to conquer a new city, a bigger city…New York City. She began working for Michelin Star Restauranteur & Chef, Charlie Palmer. She worked with Chef Charlie Palmer for nearly 3 years, assisting with the growth of his beverage program, and opening his flagship Charlie Palmer Steak in New York. It’s only fitting that this is when she met the love of her life, while working and doing what she loves. She then, began working with Aldo Sohm, winner of the prestigious “Best Sommelier in America” in 2007, organizing events at his brand-new booming midtown wine bar. After 4 years in the City, Ariana and her honey were ready for a quieter life. They moved to the Gold Coast of Long Island, and began managing a restaurant together. Ariana’s love for creating special events in people lives was in full blossom. After 3 years on Long Island, they moved to Mystic, Connecticut and Ariana became the wedding sales manager at Water’s Edge. When she’s not working, you can find her experimenting and cooking novel and interesting food dishes, fishing, at the playground with her step-son, or hiking the many trails of Connecticut with her German Shepherd mutt, Harri.

Karen M. Robidoux
Senior Sales Manager

Karen began her hospitality career by interning in the front desk and housekeeping departments at the Hyatt Orlando Hotel.  She then graduated from Johnson & Wales University with an Associate’s Degree in Hotel/Restaurant Management and a Bachelor’s Degree in Hospitality Sales Management.  After graduating Karen began her professional career at the Sheraton Hartford Hotel as a Catering Coordinator then moved to Meetings Manager.  The Sheraton Hotel then became a Hilton Hotel where she became a Sales Manager.  After spending 11 years in the Hartford area Karen now enjoys working at the beautiful Water’s Edge as Senior Sales Manager.  Outside of the hotel industry, she enjoys hiking with her two dogs, visiting Las Vegas and spending time with her family.

Nicole Schumacher
Conference Services Manager

Nicole began her hospitality career 14 years ago at the Water’s Edge Resort & Spa as a front desk clerk.  Through her hard work and dedication to the Resort, she was soon promoted to reservations manager.  Nicole held this position for 4 years until she was once again promoted to the position of Front desk Manager where she successfully ran the department along with the valet staff for 1-1\2 years.  Seeing her exemplary work ethic and dedication to the resort, the Director of Sales and Marketing requested that she be transferred to the sales department in her current role as Conference Service Manager.

Nancy Steele
Senior Wedding / Social Sales Manager

Nancy has been a part of the sales team at Water’s Edge Resort & Spa since 2006.  She loves working within a team to ensure each and every guest at Water’s Edge has experiences that make special memories long lasting and contributing to the growth and development of the resort. Her interest in social event catering began at the Doubletree Hotel in Windsor Locks, Connecticut where she was a Catering Sales Manager and then was promoted to the Director of Catering. Working in catering for seven years provided Nancy with the time needed to establish and enhance her skills in event planning and customer relations. In 2006 Nancy started her career at  Water’s Edge Resort & Spa with a goal of specializing in weddings and social event sales as well as their coordination. When she’s not at work, Nancy has a passion for animals which drives her to volunteer for many different animal activist and welfare groups.

Taylor Thompson
National Sales Manager

In the summer of 2018, Taylor Thompson began her career at Water’s Edge Resort and Spa as a Front Desk Agent. Working in a position most central to the resort, her skills working with diverse groups and events were able to flourish. With these interests and refined skills at the forefront, Taylor was promoted to the position of Sales Manager, where she excels in her relationships with new and seasoned clients and bringing their ideas for meetings and events to life.

Before her career began at Water’s Edge Resort and Spa, Taylor graduated from the University of Connecticut with a B.A. in History and Political Science. While earning her degree, Taylor spent her free time volunteering with public outreach groups and organizing student voter registration drives. For over two years she held the highly regarded position of Food and Beverage Supervisor for University Dining and Events. In addition to her desire to serve the community and her experience working in the service industry, Taylor began developing her sales and marketing skills after completing a year-long competitive internship with College Works Painting

In 2016, Taylor enrolled at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland through the UCONN study abroad program. She studied Celtic and Gaelic history and spent her down time backpacking through Europe. This holds a special place for Taylor as one of the most influential times in her life, launching her interest in continuing lifelong learning through traveling.