Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Wilson

Jonathan Wilson

VP Product Innovation & Brand Services, Hilton Worldwide

Jonathan Wilson leads a team of the best professionals in the industry to provide global product innovation and brand definition in food and beverage, spa and wellness, rooms division, and meeting and public spaces for 14 worldwide brands. In addition, he is responsible for pursuing the development of strategic opportunities in innovation through creative partner solutions, talent exposure and a fostered environment. Prior to Joining Hilton Worldwide in May of 2015, Mr. Wilson spent 15 years at Princess Cruises, the number one cruise line in the premium market segment and fourth largest cruise line in the world. As vice president, guest food and beverage experience, product development and hotel analysis, Mr. Wilson led the team that creates and delivers the food, beverage, bar, lounge, and dining experiences for guests and crew through guest culinary, dining and beverage services. He was responsible for guiding product development in the areas of culinary, dining and beverage services, through newbuild initiatives, revitalization efforts, capital expenditure, crew engagement and product relevance of Asia source markets. The goal of his team was to create onboard offerings that drive new demand and build customer loyalty while maximizing onboard revenue, cost control, operational efficiencies. Mr. Wilson's positions within Princess Cruises included director of culinary operations, director of hotel operations, vice president of hotel operations for newbuild and product development, and vice president of hotel operations food & beverage and product development. Before joining Princess Cruises, Mr. Wilson held management positions at the Institute of Hotel and Tourism Management where he led the Educational Division of the Belvoir Park Swiss Hotel School as well as functional hotel and food and beverage operations; The Palace of the Lost City in South Africa, and the Grand Wailea Resort and Spa in Maui, Hawaii where his career as a Chef de Cuisine afforded him the opportunity to cook for celebrities, dignitaries and peers. Starting as a chef by trade with an apprenticeship from the Grove Park Inn and Country Club in North Carolina, Mr. Wilson also earned a degree in Culinary Arts from Johnson and Wales University. Originally from Indiana, Mr. Wilson continues to enjoy traveling the world and now lives with his wife and three daughters in Leesburg, VA.

Please visit http://www.hilton.com for more information.

Mr. Wilson can be contacted at 703-883-1000 or jonathan.wilson@hilton.com

Coming up in August 2020...

Food & Beverage: New Technological Innovations

In the past few years, hotel food and beverage departments have experienced significant growth. Managers are realizing just how much revenue potential this sector holds, both in terms of additional revenue and as a means to enhance the guest experience. As a result, substantial investments are being made in F&B operations as a way to satisfy hotel guests but also to keep pace with the competition. Though it has been a trend for many years, the Farm-to-Table movement shows no signs of abating. Hotel chains are abandoning corporate restaurants and are instead partnering with local chefs to create locally-influenced dining options. Local, farm-sourced ingredients paired with specialty beverages or local wine also satisfies the increasing demand from Millennial travelers who are eager to travel sustainably and contribute to a positive impact. A farm-to-table F&B program also helps to support the local economy, which builds community goodwill. Also popular are "Self-Serv" and "Grab & Go" options. These concepts stem from an awareness that a guest's time is limited and if a hotel can supply them with fast, fresh, food and beverage choices, then so much the better for them. Plus, by placing these specialty kiosks in areas that might be traditionally under-utilized (the lobby, for instance), they can become popular destination locations. Of course, there are new technological innovations as well. In-room, on-screen menus allow guests to order from any restaurant on the property, and some hotels are partnering with delivery companies that make it possible for guests to order food from any restaurant in the area. Also, many hotels are implementing in-room, voice-activated devices, so ordering food via an AI-powered assistant will soon become mainstream as well. The August issue of the Hotel Business Review will report on these developments and document what some leading hotels are doing to expand this area of their business.