Wednesday, May 15, 2024
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People News Is Booming in the Golden State

California is seeing an abundance of appointments and promotions throughout its meetings, events, and hospitality industries

By Amanda Christensen

All across the state, hotels, resorts, convention and visitors bureaus, and industry associations are making moves to expand and strengthen their teams in an effort to boost business in their sectors.

The Sea Ranch Lodge in Northern California appointed Stephen Beaumier as executive chef in mid-March. He brings more than 20 years of experience in the culinary industry to the role, with previous positions at restaurants including Quince in San Francisco, Cyrus Restaurant in downtown Healdsburg, and Noma in Copenhagen, Denmark. He will oversee Sea Ranch’s The Dining Room, The Cafe, and The Bar and Lounge.

Headshot of Stephen Beaumier. April 14, 2024
Chef Stephen Beaumier || Courtesy of The Sea Ranch Lodge

Down in Los Angeles, The Hollywood Roosevelt hotel welcomed Sumeet Jhingan as its new executive assistant manager of food and beverage in late March. He comes to the historic hotel with more than 20 years of diverse food and beverage experience and will help oversee The Hollywood Roosevelt’s collection of restaurants and bars—including the new Shirley Brasserie, the burger joint 25 Degrees, Rosy Cafe, Cinegrill Theater, and the Tropicana Bar.

Headshot of Sumeet Jhingan. April 15, 2024
Sumeet Jhingan || Courtesy of The Hollywood Roosevelt

The Hotel Association of Los Angeles named Jackie Filla as the new president and CEO of the organization in mid-March. Filla succeeds Heather Rozman in the role, bringing several years of experience to the position. Most recently, Filla served as policy director for the city council office in LA City Hall, overseeing the team responsible for legislative affairs, intergovernmental relationships, and policy.

Headshot of Jackie Filla. April 15, 2024
Jackie Filla || Photo by LA City Council Photographer

South of LA, along the coast, Visit Dana Point named Christian Petersen as its new director of business development in late February. He brings more than 20 years of experience in marketing, tourism, and sales to the role. Petersen will oversee the organization’s travel trade operations and assist in helping to grow leisure travel to the city. He held previous roles at Disneyland Resort and the Long Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Headshot of Christian Petersen. April 15, 2024
Christian Petersen || Photo by Renee Cascia

Also in Dana Point, the Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort & Club announced the appointments of Gordon Maybury and Peter Lai as resortwide executive chef and executive chef of its restaurant Bourbon Steak Orange County, respectively. Originally from Ireland, Maybury will oversee the culinary experiences across the entire property spanning seven dining destinations and the on-site banquet and catering operations. Lai comes to the role at Bourbon Steak Orange County with robust culinary experience and a degree from the Texas Culinary Academy in Austin.

Dana Point’s Laguna Cliffs Marriott Resort & Spa welcomed Ben Ly as general manager for the property on April 2. The 20-year industry veteran held previous roles at Hilton Santa Barbara Beachfront Resort, The Beverly Hilton, and Embassy Suites San Francisco Airport. He will oversee all facets of Laguna Cliffs’ operations including guest services, culinary offerings, spa amenities, and overall guest experience.

Headshot of Ben Ly. April 15, 2024
Ben Ly || Courtesy of Laguna Cliffs Marriott Resort & Spa

Further south in Carlsbad, The Cape Rey Carlsbad Beach, a Hilton Resort & Spa, introduced several new members to its culinary team in early March to oversee its on-site restaurant, Chandler’s Oceanfront Dining. Leading the team is John Hart as the new executive chef, coming from a previous six-year stint at the Palace Hotel, a Luxury Collection Hotel, in San Francisco. Joshua Vinyard is now the resort’s executive sous chef, bringing more than a decade of diverse experience to the role with previous positions at Mission Hotel’s Michelin star-rated restaurant, Valle, in Oceanside, as well as at Wally’s Beverly Hills. Carlsbad-native Thomas Elg takes on the title of chef de cuisine, having worked in the culinary industry for more than 30 years with expertise focused on seasonal and locally sourced ingredients.

Out in the desert, Visit Greater Palm Springs welcomed Samuel L. Thompson III as the new director of Indian Wells tourism where he will work closely with the City of Indian Wells to promote and drive visitation. Indian Wells is one of nine cities in the Coachella Valley marketed by Visit Greater Palm Springs, and Thompson comes to the role with extensive experience in hospitality and tourism.

Headshot of Samuel L. Thompson. April 15, 2024
Samuel L. Thompson || Courtesy of Visit Greater Palm Springs