HORECA INDUSTRY EXPERTS

  • Martin B Jones
    Martin B Jones
    Vice President, Food & Beverage - Luxury Brands, Europe, Accor Hotels

    Martin B. Jones is a visionary, creative senior food and beverage leader whose 35 years of international expertise, enable him to predict what luxury consumers really want and transform his insights into award-winning F&B concepts which are consistent commercial successes, and become trend-setting destinations, for leading hotel brands.

    A hospitality innovator, relentlessly reinventing, Jones has travelled to over 100 countries and lived in 16, researching globally to understand future local demand and anticipate the right trend for his next concept.   His flair for gaining a head start on influential trends, and superior delivery from his committed teams, marks Jones as the entrepreneurial and inspirational leader for whom Starwood created their one-time “Most Creative Innovator Award.” Uniquely in F&B, he studied both F&B Management at Cornell, and Arts and Psychology, in Sydney.  

    Jones was instrumental in creating Starwood’s USD 2BN APAC F&B division, developing over 80 restaurant concepts for all Starwood Brands, which grew into 1600 active APAC and global brands, as a member of their top 100 senior leaders worldwide. With exposure to all F&B roles from top hotels, plus his gift for creatively connecting the arts with hospitality and experience opening 5 hotels worldwide, Jones is one of the most respected veterans in F&B, selected to open Asia’s first W Hotel, now iconic. His renovation and leadership of the Westin Singapore introduced a new luxury to the market and won a Golden Key Award; his transformation of The Westin KL into the number 1 hotel in town resulted in it being sold at the highest price per room ever in KL.   Jones’s dedication and passion for his discipline, global travel and ‘leading through people’; establishing and mentoring loyal teams, who enthusiastically join him on his tireless drive for excellence, accounts for his success.  He is a self-confessed perfectionist who demands the most, delivers the best, and makes it fun. 
     
    Martin B. Jones is an authority on global luxury hospitality and regularly presents at many industry-leading events. Exceptionally well connected, he attends all the major international F&B trade fairs and enjoys strong relationships with top brands and suppliers. He is now leading Accor’s Luxury brands as VP F&B Europe

  • Philip Mahoney
    Philip Mahoney
    Vice President, Food & Drink, Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group

    Philip Mahoney heads up Food & Drink for the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group in Europe, Middle East and Africa with a portfolio of some 430 hotels in operation and development. Carlson Rezidor operates hotels under the upper upscale Radisson Blu, mid-market Park Inn by Radisson and lifestyle select Radisson Red brands as well as the luxury Quorvus Collection.

    In his 28-year career, Mahoney managed hotels in the UK, Croatia and Mauritius for Malmaison, Lonrho, De Vere, Radisson Blu and Regent Hotels before moving into regional responsibility for Radisson Blu and Hotel Missoni in the UK and Ireland. He moved into his current role 3 years ago. 

     

  • Knud Bundgaard
    Knud Bundgaard
    Senior Director F&B Development and Culinary EMEA, Hilton Worldwide

    Knud, who currently serves as area Sr Director F&B Development and Culinary, has enjoyed an extensive 30+ years in the hotel catering industry in a career which has taken him to over 15 different countries including Australia, UAE, Turkey, Russia, New Zealand, China,  Norway and Jordan. A Danish national he joined Hilton Worldwide in 1999 and was Executive Chef at Hilton Athens when it was the official HQ of the IOC during the 2004 Olympics.  The following year he served as Kitchen Director as part of the pre-opening team at Hilton Sydney, one of the company’s flagship hotels, where he was responsible for developing and launching the property’s F&B portfolio. In 2006, he took a more senior role of area executive chef for UK & Ireland followed by a Regional Director of Culinary role in Dubai in charge of MEA in 2009

    In 2012 Knud became Regional Director of F&B for HWW Africa and Indian Ocean and was setting up a new corporate office in Johannesburg SA.

    With the merging of HWW Europe and MEA regions in 2014 Knud was promoted to his current role based in HWW head office in Watford, UK

    Knud leads a team of 3 directors supporting projects and hotels across all HWW brands

     

  • Christian de Barrin
    Christian de Barrin
    CEO of HOTREC, the umbrella Association of Hotels, Restaurants and Cafes in Europe

    Mr. de Barrin is Chief Executive Officer of HOTREC since April 2014. Its mission includes raising the industry’s profile at European level and developing  strategies to boost the industry’s growth.

    French native, with an economic background at the Universities of Assas and Panthéon-Sorbonne, Christian has built up expertise and experience in strategic communication, stakeholder relations and public affairs in Brussels for 14 years. He held several senior communication and association management positions in various environments such as the Group HEC (international business school) in France and major trade associations such as the European Copper Institute in Brussels. In addition, Christian’s professional background includes working for an an EU Think-Tank and delivering trainings on communication and EU lobbying at the European Training Institute. Christian de Barrin was also Board Member at the European Association of Communication Directors and a columnist at French radio France-Info.

  • James Lomax
    James Lomax
    Programme Officer (Food Systems & Agriculture), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)

    Mr James Lomax has been the Sustainable Food Systems Programme Officer in UNEP’s Division of Technology, Industry and Economics based in Paris, France since 2009. A tropical agriculturalist by training and with a background in farming, before joining UNEP Mr Lomax had a varied career in the private sector in farming, food processing and export of food in East Africa and Europe.

    Mr Lomax leads work on mainstreaming sustainable consumption and production practices in the agriculture and food sector including food waste reduction and prevention through developing tools and methodologies (www.thinkeatsave.org), catalyzing public/private partnerships and sustainability activities at national and regional levels as well as on the ground.

  • Dominik Stolzer
    Dominik Stolzer
    Head Chef,Hotel Bristol Vienna

    Dominik Stolzer started his culinary career in his Styrian home with his training as a chef and restaurant manager. After that, he intensifyed his culinary skills in various restaurants and hotels, among others in the restaurants "la pura", "Red Panda" and "Roesselstube".

    Before joining Hotel Bristol in 2013 he already received numerous awards such as two Gault Millau "Hauben"and 3 à la carte "Sterne". He has also been honoured with the "Grüne Haube" an award for holistic and healthy cuisine.
    Since November 2013 Dominik Stolzer holds the postition of the chef de cuisine at the Bristol Lounge. Together with his team he enchants guests with an exciting mix of culinary classics and new interpretations.

    Traditional Austrian dishes and international classics mingle with delicious new interpretations and signature dishes from the young Executive kitchen director, GMC Dominik Stolzer and his dedicated team. With experimental flair, Stolzer creates his culinary delights from top-quality regional produce, whilst deliberately avoiding overstatement.

    In 2014 Dominik Stolzer and the Bristol Lounge have been awarded with one toque by Gault Millau.
     

     

  • José Avillez
    José Avillez
    2 Michelin star awarded Chef, Belcanto Restaurant

    Considered one of the great Portuguese chefs, José Avillez stands out due to his enterprising spirit and his willingness to go one step further.

    At the moment he has five restaurants in Lisbon and one in Oporto. While offering different culinary experiences, they all express his enormous passion for cooking

    José Avillez also authors and hosts TV and radio cooking shows.

    osé Avillez’s Belcanto was elected one of the best 100 restaurants in the world, achieving 91st place in the prestigious “The World's 50 Best Restaurants List”.

    In 2014 was one of his restaurants Belcanto awarded two Michelin stars.

  • Adam Mularuk
    Adam Mularuk
    Brand President Starbucks, CE AmRest Coffee

    A graduate of BSA Hospitality Management at the Florida International University and MBA at the University of Minnesota and the Warsaw School of Economics. From 1992 to 2000 worked for IKEA Poland where he developed professionally from a Restaurant Manager to the Food Service Director CEE, and then took a positon of IKEA Unit Managing Director. In 2001-2003 President and CEO of his own start up Decorador specializing in home furnishings. In 2004 returned to IKEA as Store Managing Director in IKEA Barcelona and later in IKEA Madrid. After 5 years he moved back to IKEA Poland to take over a position of the Country Sales Director. 

    In 2012 joined AmRest Holding, the largest independent restaurant operator in CE, as Brand President Burger King. Since September 2012 Starbucks President CE responsible for 5 markets: Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria.

    Married with two children. Passionate about sailing and tennis. Loves vintage cars and cooking for his family. 

     

  • Gergo Gullner
    Gergo Gullner
    Executive Chef, InterContinental Budapest

    Gergő Gullner has started his carrier as an apprentice chef in Budapest and made his way to Executive chef position for the last 20 years. Gergő has worked in Vancouver, New York, Budapest, Zurich, Dubai, Moscow and Kuwait. As an employee of the biggest hotel chains, including Baltschug Kempinski (Moscow), Zurich Mariott Hotel (Switzerland), Four Seasons Budapest, the Monarch Dubai (the United Arab Emirates) let alone the Al Wazzan Group in Kuwait, he met a wide range of special ingredients and exotic dishes and developed a passion for gastronomy.  

    He has obtained a diploma of the Advanced kitchen management - at the Emirates Academy (associated with the Ecole Hotelier de Lausanne) and has won an award at French Gastronomic Competition. During his career he has prepared food for many world dignitaries like Pope John Paul II, HM Queen Elisabeth and Prince Philip Duke of Edinburgh, Hilary Clinton  and many others politicians and dignitaries.

    After returning from Kuwait, Gergő Gullner started working at InterContinental Budapest, where he had learnt the basic cooking methods as an apprentice. Gergő gave the hotel’s gastronomy, which is a blend of luxury and tradition, a completely new dimension. The new culinary concept 'where luxury meets tradition' introduces traditional Hungarian specialities that are served in a uniquely luxurious manner.

    Gergo's Motto: Every course has its own story inspiring various conversations. I believe that these moments are worth sharing.
     

  • Attila Bándoli
    Attila Bándoli
    Managing Director, Gundel Restaurant

    Attila Bándoli was born on 12 June, 1957, Budapest, Hungary.
    He started as an apprentice in the largest Hungarian Hotel. He moved to the Netherlands in his early 20’s, and worked for the Engels Restaurant as a maître d'hôtel. As he got back to Hungary, he worked for Best Western Grand Hotel Hungaria in Budapest as a maître d'hôtel. He worked his way up to banquet manager and director of restaurant.

    Just before Romania joined to the EU, he took over the position of general manager of Danubius Hotels in Sovata.

    After the deputy position he debuted as a managing director in 2014 in Gundel Restaurant.

    He attended Budapest Business School, College of Commerce, Catering and Tourismthe Budapest Business School, College of Commerce, Catering and Tourism Budapest Business School, College of Commerce, Catering and Tourism and studied hotel and restaurant management, and went to the University of West Hungary on Faculty of Economics.

    His wife Lili is a teacher and a consultant and they have two children.

     

  • Kim Rahbek Hansen
    Kim Rahbek Hansen
    Founder & CEO, Sticks n Sushi

    Kim’s professional career started as a student, where he established the first ski magazine in Denmark. Later he sold his little publishing company to a lager media group, where he became responsible for the sport magazines in the company. Through the next 15 years Kim worked himself up in the media business, becoming managing director for Euroman Publications Ltd, a monthly fashion magazine for men, and concept manager for Søndagsavisen International AB in Stockholm.

    In 1994 he founded Sticks’n’Sushi together with his brother and brother-in-law, primarily as a professional hobby and as happy amateurs.

    As CEO, Kim is responsible for the growth and development of the company and that the strategy decided by the board is being executed. Kim has the prime responsibility to see that the organization and the people develop, and that Sticks’n’Sushi is able to attract the right people and to keep the organization motivated on a high level.

    Amongst other board memberships, Kim is president of the Food Organization of Denmark, F.O.O.D, which aims to further Nordic food and gastronomy. Kim is also a member of the Danish industry association HORESTA’s think tank, The Tourism Growth Council [Turismens Vækstråd].

  • Mickey Bhoite
    Mickey Bhoite
    Chef,IDW Esperanza Resort

    What began as an erroneous academic choice turned into a life-changing career for Mickey! Born in India, he grew up breathing the fresh and inspiring air at the picturesque sunny region of Tuscany, Italy. After graduation at hospitality school Mickey moved across Italy and overseas to expand his spectrum of knowledge and tried to engrain different experiences and create his style of cooking.  

    Mickey came back to Italy in 2001 as a Chef de cuisine in a gourmet restaurant in my town, Il Merlo Bianco, Montecatini Terme. Soon enough he felt something is missing .... so he headed back to working at helm of some of the top 5 star luxury hotels in Italy and Switzerland like Principe di Piemonte ,Park Hyatt Milano,Altafiumara R. Calabria, Excelsior Firenze, Cristallo Palace Cortina D’ampezzo, Le Mirador Kempinski … wherein in had the privilidge of working with some of the best chefs in business. 

    In 2010 was Mickey offered to take the challenge of opening the Le Cirque New Delhi in India, which he gladly accepted. Currently working as executive chef in and luxury Eco Resort (IDW Esperanza) Near Trakai, Lithuania.


     

  • Matthias Koch
    Matthias Koch
    President, Austrian Professional Hotel Association

    Since 2008 Matthias Koch is the CEO of the Austrian Professional Hotel Association and the Austrian Professional Leisure Establishment Association in the Austrian Economic Chamber (WKO). Koch studied law and was the General Manager of i2b - ideas to business, head of the Austrian coordination office of Deutsche Telekom AG and Euro-commissioner and head of "Project €" for the Austrian Economic Chamber.

     

     

  • Bernd Kirsch
    Bernd Kirsch
    Area Executive Chef CEE, Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group & Executive Chef Radisson Blu Hotel, Bucharest

    Bernd Kirsch who is German nationality joined Rezidor in 2003 as Executive Chef at Radisson Blu Hotel Berlin. Since 2011 he is Director of F&D/Executive Chef at the 5* Radisson Blu Hotel Bucharest and during his assignments in the company Bernd welcomed many opportunities to be part of the Grand Opening Team. He supported openings and reopening of a significant number of hotels.

    He also was there for the logistics and organizational challenge at several annual corporate conferences as well as he took over the mainly part of the catering for UEFA Europe League Final in Bucharest, on 9th of May 2012, which was the biggest sport event of Romania and included a catering for 3500 persons. His professional growth was also academically sustained, by being officially recognized instructor for chefs and bakers in Germany.

    Bernd Kirsch is currently the Area Executive Chef for South – East Europe & Poland. He is coordinating more than 20 hotels in Romania, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Croatia, Bulgaria, Hungary and Poland.

    In his new role, Bernd is offering support to his region in key areas of responsibility like implementation of F&D initiatives and concepts, enhancement of culinary delivery in restaurants, bars and M&E service, culinary trainings, procurement liaison and contribution to increased departmental profitability.

    Starting November 2013, Bernd has implemented Food Waste Management Program in several hotels in South- East Europe and Central Europe, reducing yearly with 30% the food wastage.”

     

     

     

  • Marta Novakova
    Marta Novakova
    President, Czech Confederation of Commerce and Tourism

    Marta was elected as the President of the Czech Confederation of Commerce and Tourism in 2014, before her election she was part of the Board of Director for several years. Marta also serves as Chairman of U&SLUNO a.s., a company engaged in information technology and a consultancy focusing on retail, logistics and distribution.

    Marta started her professional career as a sales manager of PRIOR stores and later as a director of the publishing company SALVO.

    Marta graduated in Systems Engineering at the Faculty of Economics and did her MBA focused on the Strategy for Managers. As an enthusiastic athlete she loves skiing, tennis, cycling, hiking and in-line skating. Among her other hobbies belong also classic music and good movies.

     

  • Krzysztof Kaliciński
    Krzysztof Kaliciński
    Business Development & Operations Director, Green Caffe Nero

    Krzysztof since 2 years is Business Development & Operations Director for Green Caffe Nero coffeechain  – join venture between Caffe Nero and Green Coffee Company.  Green Caffe Nero was created in 2012 by Caffe Nero – award winning, largest private coffeechain  and polish, premium, award winning chain of coffeeshops established in 2010. In 2015 Green Caffe Nero was awarded for: best menu, best coffee chain, best brand development, retailer of the year 2015 (café category).

    He started at McDonal’s -  both corporate and franchisee. After training in United States he was working for 7 years for T.G.I. Fridays casual dining restaurants as Head pf Hospitality Management Services. 2005-2015 he was Director of Operations of coffeeheaven – first and largest coffeeshop chain in Poland (rebranded now by COSTA COFFEE).

    2010-2013 Krzysztof was running company LS Travel Foodservice as managing Director and Board Member. Company was focused on travel locations, mainly airports. LS was multibrand company such as: Voyage Café, Bread & Co, Flying Bistro, Business Shark, The Flame, empik café.

    Krzysztof is experienced manager in multiunit management, business development, training and people development, project management, concept creation.

  • Martin Pastyrik
    Martin Pastyrik
    President, Czech Association of Sommeliers & Owner Restaurant and Wine Cellar at Kinsky Palaca Prague

    Martin’s carrier started at InterContinental Hotel Prague as part of F&B team, followed by being in charge of the wine cellar Mazhaus at the hotel. After the reconstruction of InterContinental Prague in 1993, Martin decided to stay loyal to IHG brand and relocated to Stuttgart and later also to London. After returning back to Prague was managing 9th hotel floor, including banquet area and restaurant ‘Zlata Praha’ where at 1997 established with his colleagues the Czech Sommeliers Association and was named its president. Among the greatest achievements in past years can be considered his participation as one of the juries at sommelier world championship in Chile at 2010. For more than 15 years runs his own restaurant and wine cellar at Kinski Palace Prague. 

  • Peteris Ozols
    Peteris Ozols
    Head of F&B,Hotel Bergs

    Restaurant BERGS’ director Peteris Ozols is in charge of the one of leading gourmet scenes in Riga since it’s opening in July, 2003.

    During these twelve years Bergs has consistently maintained the loyalty of regular customers as well as amazement of guests who dine there for the first time. Before taking over the Restaurant Bergs, Peteris has started his carrier in 1994 at the Vincents – one of the top gourmet scenes in Riga city for more than 20 years. Five years’ experience there established a solid background, that allowed him to take over the management of “Žagara Jaunais Restorāns” (1999-2002) and “Babylion” (2002-2003). Restaurant BERGS was opened in 2004 and straight away became one of top restaurants in Riga city. Under Peteris management Bergs has maintained its graciosity and charm, not forgetting the exquisite cuisine and distinguished service.

    In order to achieve such results Mr. Ozols has always underlined the necessity of adoption of methods from representatives of gourmet scenes from other top European restaurants. Thus, joining the internationally recognized lifelong education program Leonardo da Vinci - many members of our team have had invaluable opportunity work alongside masters at Chez Dominique in Helsinki and La Table du Gourmet in France. Both are listed in the prestigious Michelin Guide.  
    Peteris’ hobbies naturally are everything related to food and beverage.

  • Rudolf Štefan
    Rudolf Štefan
    Owner & Chef, Pelegrini Restaurant

    From 2006, when he first decided to open his restaurant in a 700 years-old palace Pelegrini – Tambača in the heart of Šibenik historic center, Rudi Štefan, the owner and the chef of konoba Pelegrini, has been guided by the idea that cuisine is an art where advancement must never cease.

    His culinary philosophy entails each new day as an opportunity to add creative value to typical local ingredients, but also to rediscover some nearly forgotten treasures, leading up to an exciting menu prepared exclusively from fresh local ingredients, with signature specialities such as slow braised beef cheeks with boiled vegetables and celery puree or smoked oxtail in tempura with salsa. The juxtaposition between Rudi's energetic and innovative approach to cuisine and the subtle air of ancient in the architecture of the restaurant space brought Pelegrini a membership in the Jeunes Restaurateurs d'Europe association, as well as the title of the best restaurant in Dalmatia in 2013!

     

     

  • Kaspars Jansons
    Kaspars Jansons
    Executive Chef, Restaurant Muusu & Co-founder Latvian Chef Club

    Kaspars Jansons, the Executive Chef, is the biggest strength of Latvian Muusu Restaurant.

    We are not afraid to claim that he is one of the best chefs in the city. He has been a participant and winner of many international chef competitions and lately he has been invited as a juror. Jansons has trained in-service at the various high level restaurants like 3 Michelin-starred Baiersbronn at the Hotel Traube Tornbach, Germany, 1 Michelin-starred Atlantide and La table du gourmet, France. Also at the well know and prestigious 3 Michelin-starred Noma, Denmark.