These interviews are part of a series that highlights new hires within the industry. Have you recently started a new role or do you know someone who has? Submit your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jeffrey G. Chirinos was recently named the Director of Food & Beverage of the new Westin Anaheim Resort.
1. What are you looking forward to most in your new role?
Creating new experiences for the community of Anaheim and new attractions to our travelers by providing unique dining and entertainment to an area that desires more options at a highly elevated level of service and environment. Specifically, at The Westin Anaheim Resort, we’ll have five different restaurants and bars including an exclusive rooftop lounge, a cool lobby bar, a signature restaurant, fun pool bar and gourmet coffee/café shop. I’m also in charge of leading the food and beverage offerings and service for The Westin Club Lounge, banquet/meeting spaces and the in room dining provided to guests.
2. How do you think past experiences have prepared you for this role?
Having been a part of luxury openings across the US, gave me the opportunity to work with a very diverse demographic of guests and a clear vision of what travelers look for in luxury hotels. This is important as we are building and will be opening The Westin Anaheim Resort to AAA Four-Diamond level status. Additionally, learning from all the talent I have been fortunate to work with allowed me to learn sales, food, beverage, and leadership at a very high level. I gained a detailed eye for quality, training and service which I use to facilitate directly to my teams and delight my guests time and time again.
3. How did you get into the industry?
My first mentor was the Director of F&B for the famous Washington Hilton in DC. He was one of my students while I was teaching Spanish as a second language for high level executives and military in the Washington DC area. Through my teaching, he thought I had the personality to be in hotels and opened the doors to my working at this famous hotel as a Jr. Catering Manager. I worked with the city’s elite which included the White House, The Capitol, The Washington Post and the world’s top organizations based in DC. …after almost 30 years…. he was right!
4. What are you hoping to achieve in your new role?
In every opportunity I have had to open a hotel, I have been in charge of making someone’s dream and vision come true. That responsibility is my daily bread to ensure I put my heart and soul in not only accomplishing their dreams but to make them even better! I achieve this by providing additional creative ideas, and more significantly, by energizing and motivating my team to deliver more than first class, luxury service. I’ve selected top notch people who are not only friendly but genuinely love providing great hospitality.
5. What do you enjoy most about the industry?
I live by creativity and by people connection. Our industry and my roles have always allowed me to have both. I am a strong believer on these two key factors in order to make a hotel be successful and attractive for all guests. For example, I’ve led the team in the creation of the exclusive rooftop lounge, called RISE, for The Westin Anaheim Resort. Everything from the naming of the rooftop lounge; to the selection on the sleek uniforms; to the crafting of the tasty menu and cool cocktails that will be served there. It’s going to be spectacular for our hotel guests to enjoy this sexy rooftop lounge while viewing the nightly Disneyland fireworks!