Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Caliendo

Gino Caliendo

General Manager, Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront

Gino Caliendo has served as the general manager of Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront, the largest convention hotel between Atlanta and Orlando, since May of 2014. He has more than 33 years of experience in the hotel industry, all with Hyatt hotels and resorts across the U.S., and he most recently served for six years as the general manager at Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort and Spa in San Antonio, Texas. Prior to Hill Country, Mr. Caliendo served as general manager for the Hyatt Regency Miami, Hyatt Regency Coral Gables and Hyatt Regency Deerfield. He also held various other food-and-beverage positions, including opening the resort on Grand Cayman, Grand Hyatt Tampa, Los Angeles and New Orleans. Mr. Caliendo oversees all aspects of hotel operations. As the general manager for the region's largest convention hotel, he works with local convention, tourism and development officials to attract more business to the area. Of special focus for Mr. Caliendo is the hotel's ongoing initiatives to support downtown economic development, positioning the city for future growth. He is also an active supporter of “Hyatt Thrive,” the company's global corporate responsibility initiative, and he has led a number of projects that give back to the local community and residents. Mr. Caliendo grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and studied at Duquesne University. He lives in Jacksonville with his wife of 25 years, Kyla. He enjoys spending time with his family and friends, good conversation, fine wine, excellent food, good books, watching movies, fly-fishing, animals and fantasy football.

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

Mr. Caliendo can be contacted at 904-588-1234 or gino.caliendo@hyatt.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.