Goldener Hirsch, Hard Rock New York and others appoint new F&B leaders

Hotels and resorts across North America have named new leaders for their food and beverage operations in the past few weeks.

Everline Resort & Spa

Everline Resort & Spa, located in North Lake Tahoe’s Olympic Valley, adds Steve Uricchio as director of food and beverage. Uricchio joins the property from Cannery Casino Resorts in Las Vegas. He is responsible for overseeing the resort’s dining experience including banquets and the property’s six on-site restaurants.

After graduating from the Escoffier Culinary School in Versailles, France, Uricchio ventured into the culinary world of Beverly Hills California. He began working in restaurants at The Doghouse, followed by banquet positions at the Beverly Hilton Hotel and Friars Club in Beverly Hills. Over the years, Uricchio prepared and served meals for celebrities ranging from Frank Sinatra to Walter Matthau, and celebrities via the Golden Globe and Academy Awards. He later opened Uricchio’s Trattoria, which still operates to this day. Uricchio has overseen the launch of more than 50 new and remodeled restaurants primarily in the Las Vegas region, including Carve Steakhouse, SC Prime Steakhouse & Bar, 24/7 Café, and multiple other venues for the Palms Casino Resort, Station Casinos and Boyd Gaming.

Four Seasons Resort and Residences Cabo San Lucas at Cabo Del Sol

Four Seasons Resort and Residences Cabo San Lucas at Cabo Del Sol, opening in early 2024 on the stunning southern coast of Mexico’s Baja peninsula, appoints Miguel Baltazar as executive chef. With more than a decade of culinary expertise and recognition as a national finalist in Mexico's "Chef of the Year" competition, Baltazar brings international and local experience to the resort’s diverse dining offerings.

Baltazar joins the Four Seasons team from Etéreo, an Auberge Resorts Collection in Riviera Maya, where he led culinary operations across the property’s dining outlets. Baltazar’s career also includes executive chef positions at luxury resorts including Thompson Zihuatanejo and Capella Hotel Group’s Hacienda Carretas in Queretaro, Mexico, as well as executive sous chef positions at Esperanza Resort in Los Cabos, Amanyara Resort in Turks & Caicos and Capella Hotel Group's Ixtapa Resort.

Goldener Hirsch, Auberge Resorts Collection

Goldener Hirsch, Auberge Resorts Collection, Deer Valley, Utah, appoints Senthil Krishnamurthy to executive chef. With over two decades of fine dining experience, proficiency in eight languages and a passion for the greater Salt Lake and Park City communities, Senthil has lived in Utah for more than 15 years, fostering personal relationships with local farmers and mastering the use of their produce.

He began his Utah culinary journey at the High West Distillery and Saloon in Park City and has served various positions at other acclaimed Salt Lake restaurants such as One-O-Eight Bistro, The Front Climbing Club and Ashoka Cuisines, ultimately landing him at the beloved and Bavarian-influenced Goldener Hirsch Restaurant and greater Goldener Hirsch culinary program.

Hard Rock Hotel New York

Hard Rock Hotel New York adds Oscar Gonzalez as its new food and beverage director. Gonzalez steps into this role after his successful tenure as the property’s executive chef. He will spearhead the introduction of innovative concepts, curate immersive dining experiences, and foster a culture of culinary excellence in the properties two restaurants, in-room, and for events. 

Gonzalez brings more than a decade of experience to Hard Rock Hotel New York and has worked with hotel giants including Four Seasons, Ritz Carlton, Farimont San Francisco, Pelican Hill Resort, SLS and Taj Hotels. 

Hotel Effie

Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort appoints Juan Bochenski as executive chef of Hotel Effie, Miramar Beach, Fla. Bochenski assumes the position immediately, helming the kitchen at the hotel’s signature restaurant, Ovide, and overseeing all aspects of food and beverage operations across the hotel’s four restaurant outlets and in-room dining. He supervises the culinary team, manages budgets and maintains the overall guest experience. Bochenski also works closely with local farmers and vendors to ensure the hotel restaurants continue to serve farm-fresh and sustainable ingredients whenever possible. 

Born in Argentina, Bochenski has worked at luxury resorts across the globe, including Arcis Golf in Dallas; Baker’s Bay Golf & Ocean Club on Great Guana Cay, Abaco, Bahamas; Resorts & Residences by Cuisinart on Anguilla; Jade Mountain and Anse Chastanet resorts on St. Lucia; and Rosewood Hotels & Resorts’ Inn of the Anasazi in Santa Fe, New Mexico; among others. 

Hyatt Lodge Oak Brook

Hyatt Lodge Oak Brook, Chicago, adds Leonard Ventura to serve as executive chef for the hotel, including outlets Hearth Lounge and Water’s Edge. With over 30 years of culinary expertise, Ventura began his culinary odyssey at a young age. He attended both the Dumas Pere L'Ecole de la Cuisine in Chicago and the Culinary Institute of America's Napa Campus, where he honed his expertise in French cooking techniques and laid the foundation for his path. Additionally, he received his Intermediate Sommelier Certificate, further broadening his knowledge in the world of elite dish and wine pairings. Skilled in exploring French, Italian, Spanish, Middle Eastern, and Japanese cuisines, Chef Ventura plans to use his experience and curiosity to create unique dining experiences for guests at Hyatt Lodge Oak Brook.

Kimpton Surfcomber Hotel

Miami's Kimpton Surfcomber Hotel names Gastón Javier as the property’s new executive chef. Javier will oversee the hotel’s signature restaurant, The Social Club, as well as its lively outdoor restaurant and bar, High Tide Beach Bar & Grill.
After obtaining a dual degree in culinary arts and business administration, Javier kicked off his professional career as part of the “Mango Squad,” a group of South Florida chefs that ignited the Latin fusion movement. He then took some time to further explore and refine his skills abroad, where he apprenticed with Michelin-Star chefs including Chef Ferran Adrià in Spain and Chef Gastón Acurio in Peru. Since then, he has been a private chef for various celebrities, owned and operated his own restaurants and catering companies, and was showcased on The Food Network’s "Celebrity Dish" cooking show.

Since 2015, Javier has worked in the hospitality sector holding various positions at upscale hotels in south Florida including the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa in Bonita Springs and the iconic Deauville Beach Resort before its permanent closure in 2017. Javier joins Kimpton Surfcomber from The Standard in Miami Beach, where he served as executive chef for Lido Bayside.

Palace Hotel

San Francisco’s Palace Hotel, a member of Marriott International’s Luxury Collection, appoints David Teig as executive chef. With more than 25 years of experience in the hospitality industry, Teig will be responsible for all food and beverage operations at the hotel.    

Prior to his position at Palace Hotel, Teig served as executive chef for a prominent hotel management company where he oversaw multiple Marriott franchises. Teig’s experience in the kitchen started early, working in a community restaurant near his home in upstate New York. His professional journey has been a steady progression through the ranks, from chef de partie and executive sous chef to leadership positions as director of food and beverage, hospitality vice president and executive chef.

Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis

Casa Don Alfonso, the Southern Italian eatery located in The Ritz-Carlton, St. Louis, names chef Eduardo Marquez as its new executive chef. Marquez joins the existing Casa Don Alfonso kitchen team, which includes tenured chefs from all over the world. Marquez steps into a leadership role alongside the General Manager of Casa Don Alfonso, Greg Gerber, and the Manager of Fine Dining, Ardi Dulaku.

Over his 15-year culinary career, Marquez has worked at several national and international locations of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel, which has given him experience creating a multitude of cuisines and flavors. Marquez started his career as a cook at The Ritz-Carlton, Chile. During his tenure with The Ritz-Carlton, he performed progressively in different positions within the culinary field. In 2017, he was promoted to Restaurant Chef at The Ritz-Carlton, Virgin Island, and one year later became specialty chef at The Ritz-Carlton, Rancho Mirage, before becoming specialty chef at The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe. Most recently, he worked as the executive sous chef at The Ritz-Carlton, South Beach.

The Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort & Spa

Juan Carlos Peña has been appointed chef de cuisine of Lona Cocina & Tequileria, the Mexican restaurant located at The Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort & Spa. At Lona, he oversees the restaurant’s culinary team and works directly with celebrated chef/restaurateur Pablo Salas to create and deliver eclectic, soulful Mexican dishes. Chef Peña also envisions and executes one-of-a-kind dining experiences including a monthly Chef’s Tequila Pairing Dinner, which features an artfully prepared meal, curated with a modern and refined approach to Mexican cuisine and traditions.

In 2016, Peña joined the team of The Four Seasons Resort in West Palm Beach. Peña has worked in various roles in several of Miami’s most acclaimed kitchens including Michelin-starred restaurant Le Jardinier and Stubborn Seed, and Pao by Paul Qui, who is a previous Top Chef winner. Peña has also worked in some of the most exclusive and luxury hotels in Beverly Hills including The Peninsula and Four Seasons Hotel. Most recently he served as the private chef at one of the most exclusive residential complexes in Miami. In this position, he curated private events and created personalized, custom menus for the building’s residents.