Passionate hotelier Luis Vizcaino is fueled by his love for mixology, F&B concept, and hospitality. In this interview, he outlines why F&B in hotels is more important than ever before.
What can you tell us about your F&B journey and your current role as general manager of W Dubai – The Palm?
My journey began with a summer job in Mallorca after completing my international hotel management coursework. At St. Regis Mardavall, I worked as a breakfast and mini-bar attendant and subsequently gained experience at venues such as Michelin-starred Es Fum.
After completing my studies, I joined Castillo Hotel Son Vida Luxury Collection as a trainee F&B coordinator, where I deepened my operational understanding. Subsequently, I secured an assistant F&B manager role in Palma de Mallorca, showcasing adaptability and leadership despite limited prior experience.
After two years, an internal recommendation within Marriott propelled me to oversee five venues at W Barcelona as the assistant director of venues. This experience paved the way for my transition to the MICE segment at Westin Palace Madrid. There, I worked as the assistant director of F&B.
Following this, I assumed the position of hotel manager in Siargao, Philippines, overseeing an ultra-luxury establishment. This journey culminated in my role as hotel manager for Sheraton Mallorca Arabella, before moving to Dubai to lead the team at W Dubai – The Palm.
How does your F&B background enhance the overall guest experience at the hotel?
In the hospitality sector, a brand’s success relies on appealing F&B, consistent service and culinary excellence. Notably, social media exposure shapes gastronomic expectations. As a hospitality leader, constant innovation and guest impressions are crucial. Even a simple fruit plate in a guest’s room should have a unique touch nowadays, as guests expect memorability. Furthermore, professional service in luxury hotels isn’t sufficient; people seek unique experiences constantly.
Therefore, to achieve its financial goals, a hotel needs a solid F&B strategy and effective activation. Moreover, this fosters loyalty and increases the ADR), ensuring success and a distinctive guest experience in the evolving hospitality landscape.
What are the key elements of a successful F&B venue in a hotel?
A successful culinary offering is diverse. It should cover everything from breakfast to signature restaurants. Moreover, I believe that high-quality products ought to be emphasized. Furthermore, it is important to use the right culinary processes to enhance flavors while keeping things simple.
With numerous dining options available in the market, every guest gives us the chance to showcase our culinary approach. It is therefore our job to convince clients to come back during their stay.
In your new role at W Dubai – The Palm, how do you plan to leverage your expertise in strategic planning to drive the property’s goals?
My idea is to elevate our luxury service and experiences. In addition, in this competitive market, we should have the right exposure on different platforms for our restaurants and bars. Our award-winning F&B team is exceptionally talented. Moreover, I’m committed to showcasing their skills and fostering growth. My focus is to develop a strong team, as it sets us on the path to success. I also plan to bring in new ideas and activities, thereby leveraging my expertise in restaurants and bars to create an exceptional experience for all guests.