Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Nielsen

Andrew Nielsen

General Manager, The Current Hotel, Autograph Collection

Andrew Nielsen brings more than 25 years of hospitality experience to Current Hotel, where he holds the role of General Manager. Originally from Napa Valley, California, he attended San Diego St. University. Growing up in an area famous for wine production, celebrity restaurateurs and world-class cuisine, Mr. Nielsen developed a passion for the industry and graduated with a degree in business.

Following graduation, Mr. Nielsen began his career as general manager and director of operations for multiple four-star restaurants in Napa Valley and San Francisco, including Mustards Grill, Tra Vigne, Betelnut and Fog City. His roots in the hospitality industry begin with his family's involvement in the wine business in Napa, where he achieved the Advanced Sommelier certification. This certification involves passing a series of course-specific exams such as blind tasting tests and global wine knowledge assessments. Acquired through the Guild of the Court of Master Sommeliers, the Advanced Sommelier certification is just one level from Master Sommelier, the most prestigious and highest level of wine certification in the world.

In 2002, Mr. Nielsen moved to St. Petersburg, Florida to work for Loews Hotels at the historic Don Cesar Beach Resort, before moving to the Loews Philadelphia Hotel, where he served as the director of food & beverage for seven years. He returned to Florida in 2013 to be the general manager at The Club Treasure Island and Pasadena Golf and Country Club, where he worked for six years.

Following his stint at the country club, Mr. Nielsen was the general manager at the Kimpton Hotel Zamora on St. Pete Beach. He currently lives in St. Petersburg with his three children.

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

Mr. Nielsen can be contacted at +1 813-281-2545 or andrew.nielsen@thecurrenthotel.com

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.