The Don Cesar Welcomes Two New Industry Experts to Executive and Culinary Teams
A Hospitality Veteran and Culinary Maven Join the Team at Florida's Iconic "Pink Palace"
The Don CeSar, Florida's iconic "Pink Palace," has announced the appointment of a new pastry chef and hotel manager as part of its commitment to ensuring its ongoing legacy ahead of 2019, continuing to offer travelers an unparalleled experience for generations to come.
Hotel Manager, Loni Abraham
A seasoned hospitality veteran, Abraham joins The Don CeSar team with almost 20 years of experience. A native of the U.S. Virgin Islands, Abraham moved to the U.S. in 2005 and became a night manager at the Four Seasons in Washington D.C., during which time the hotel secured the only 5-Star and 5 Diamond Hotel rating in the area. She went on to become the director of rooms at Kingsmill Resort & Spa, where she hosted a number of political caucuses, annual presidential visits, and Ladies Professional Golf Association tournaments. Abraham then moved to the Bahamas to coordinate a $500 million project, including working at the Hilton at World Resorts Bimini as the complex assistant general manager. Just before joining the "Pink Palace" team, Abraham was the complex director of operations at Hilton Myrtle Beach and the Royale Palms Myrtle Beach.
Driven by her native culture to dive into the hospitality industry, Abraham attended Strayer University in Washington D.C. and earned a bachelor's degree in business administration with a concentration in management. During her free time, Abraham enjoys traveling and indulging in history and the arts.
Pastry Chef, Angela Smith-Encio
With over 17 years of experience, Smith-Encio brings culinary wisdom from previous positions throughout Florida. Before joining The Don CeSar team, Smith-Encio was creating confections for some of Miami's top resorts and restaurants, including The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne, The Forge, and Little Palm Resort & Spa. She also held the position of cake artist for the entire Fontainebleau Miami Beach property, serving meetings, events, weddings and the property's dining outlets. It was during her time in Miami that she won first place in a chocolate and cake competition for The Festival of Chocolate in 2012. Heading back towards her home coast, Smith-Encio then took on a role as pastry chef for Marriot Waterside Downtown Tampa.
Born and raised in Tampa, Fla., Smith-Encio developed a passion for baking as a young girl in the kitchen with her grandmother. At the age of 15, Smith-Encio broke into the industry semi-professionally by entering baking competitions and won Food Network's National Recipe Contest in 2005. Smith-Encio went on to attend Johnson and Wales University, where she earned a bachelor's degree in food service management and an associate's degree in baking and pastry arts. When she's not placing the perfect touch of frosting on her creations, Smith-Encio can be found gardening, running on the beach and practicing Bikram yoga.