Macarthur Place Hotel & Spa Appoints Francisco Lopez, Jr. as Executive Chef
Culinary Maven Francisco Lopez Jr. Joins The Iconic Sonoma Hotel With a Bright and Bold Approach
MacArthur Place Hotel & Spa, a 64-room luxury boutique hotel, announces the appointment of Francisco Lopez, Jr. as Executive Chef. In this role, Chef Francisco will oversee daily culinary operations and menu curation for the property's three culinary concepts — Layla, the dining centerpiece of the hotel, The Bar at MacArthur and The Porch, a marketplace featuring local purveyors — weddings and social events, poolside dining, and the hotel's in-room dining program. With over a decade of experience in the industry and a long-standing background in beloved wine and culinary destinations across the region, Chef Francisco brings a fresh perspective to the heart of wine country to further elevate the MacArthur Place guest experience through an innovative culinary approach.
"We're thrilled to welcome Chef Francisco to MacArthur Place, where his expertise and enthusiasm will surely make a profound impact on our culinary team and operation," shares General Manager Milan Drager. "With relevant regional experience combined with a fresh and honest approach to cooking, we look forward to his innovation and passion interlacing with our farm-fresh concepts."
A native of New Hampshire, Executive Chef Francisco Lopez, Jr. (known as Chef Frankie to his kitchen and friends) began his journey at the Florida Culinary Institute, where he obtained a Certificate in Culinary Arts and International Baking & Pastry. Primarily boasting classic French training — Chef Francisco brings a passion for the culinary arts and a firm belief in quality, locally sourced ingredients used in his kitchens. His first job in California was under Michelin-starred chef Perry Hoffman for three years, at the renowned Étoile at Domaine Chandon in Yountville, CA.
Other past professional experience includes a variety of positions with Charlie Palmer Group, Calistoga Ranch, Thomas Keller Restaurant Group, and Wing & Barrel, in addition to helming the kitchen of Archer Hotel as Executive Chef for four years. Celebrated for his imagination and innovative culinary vision, he has been recognized by the American Culinary Federation, The Chaine Des Rotisseurs, Michelin Guide, and participated in the S.Pellegrino Young Chef Academy Competition. Chef Francisco aims to elevate MacArthur Place's signature Mediterranean kitchen Layla with the introduction of a curated Chef's Table experience, new catering menus, and bespoke wedding packages for the property's meetings and events programming. In his free time, you can find him at home in Napa, California playing music or heading out for a round of golf.
"MacArthur Place is a spirited space in Sonoma that sparks connections — bringing me back to what inspired my career in the culinary industry," explains Executive Chef Francisco Lopez Jr. "To be at the helm of a kitchen that creates a convivial setting paired with meals infused by the bounty of the region presents the opportunity to be a mainstay of the guest journey. I couldn't be more excited to aid in elevating the culinary experience for those we welcome to the destination while sharing my knowledge and passion for cooking with an inquisitive, talented team."
MacArthur Place's enhanced culinary and beverage programming is bolstered by two locally colonized bee apiaries in partnership with Marin Coastal Bee Co., with honey produced from each hive showcased across the six-acre property's guest programming and culinary outlets. In addition, a thriving Chef's Garden boasts seasonal vegetables, flowers, micro-greens, herbs, and more — used as ingredients and garnishes at Layla and The Bar at MacArthur.