Marriott operates USHG & USE units to mine Marquis F&B over $ 50 million
Since last December, the restaurant and hospitality industry has been eagerly awaiting to see who would win the right to operate food and beverage in one of the largest hotel properties in the world.
Late last month, news was finally confirmed that iconic restaurateur Danny Meyer Union Square Hotel Group (USHG) had won the contract to operate the food and beverage service at the Marriott Marquis in Manhattan. USHG will operate the hotel’s restaurants and bars, and Union Square Events (USE) will manage catering on the property.
The size and scope of Marriott Marquis’s food and beverage operation is telling. The room 1 966 Times Square installation Restaurant and catering operations generate over $ 50 million per year.
Shortly after Christmas 2020, the RFP process began with contract vendors invited to bid on the Marquis contract. The move follows Marriott’s layoff in December of around 850 employees in the Food & Beverage department and some other departments, including housekeeping.
The USHG Marriott initiative will be guided by two seasoned executives: Tony Mastellone and Anton Nocito. Mastellone is the Division President of Union Square Events. Meyer and his team are no strangers to the hospitality food and beverage industry. Their partnerships include The Redbury, Gramercy Park Hotel and Conrad in New York City, as well as the Thompson DC
Mastellone runs Union Square Events as a 30-year veteran of the New York hospitality industry. After graduating from the French Culinary Institute, Mastellone honed her skills in various culinary roles at the New York Hilton. He then joined Marriott Management Services as a deputy head in the corporate catering industry, progressing steadily through numerous management positions.
Prior to joining Union Square Events, Mastellone was Senior Vice President of an international corporate catering business, where he was responsible for a diverse national portfolio of commercial and industrial clients. During his tenure, the Brooklyn, NY native generated significant growth in the market with groundbreaking activities in airline lounges, offsite catering and retail catering.
Nocito is the executive chef of restaurants and bars at the New York Marriott Marquis. Prior to embarking on a career in the hospitality industry, Nocito served in the US Air Force and spent time overseas during the Gulf War. After returning to New York he attended the French Culinary Institute and soon after took a job as a cook at Union Square Cafe in 2001. Later he worked on the Terrace opening team. 5 and Cafe 2 at the Museum of Modern Art. . Nocito then left USHG to start P&H Soda, a craft soda company.
Nocito joined the USHG in 2016 as Executive Sous Chef at Porchlight, where he enhanced his culinary program, resulting in the irresistible Southern-inspired menu served at Porchlight today. In 2018, Anton was appointed Executive Chef of Porchlight and Opening Executive Chef of Cedric’s at The Shed in 2019. In 2021, he was appointed Executive Chef of Restaurants and Bars at the New York Marriott Marquis.
As with many New York City hotels, the COVID-19 pandemic has led Marriott to seek to cut costs in New York City and other major markets across the country by laying off long-term employees and replacing them. by an outsourced workforce. In unionized Marriott hotels in New York City, unionized workers did not have their work contracted out, shining a spotlight on the importance of union protections.
With catering off the table, local union HTC has set its sights on organizing housekeeping workers. “Our union already had an organizing effort underway, including a strong organizing committee that did its best to convince colleagues to join the union,” noted Julia Rybak, senior organizer and director of the union. ‘organization.
This led to the successful unionization of the Marquis’s housekeeping staff earlier this year. “The shock of the massive food and drink suppression provided the final push to give the Union a super-majority,” Rybek continued. “It’s a bittersweet victory because 850 Marquis workers learned, too late, that companies aren’t driven by sentimental feelings like loyalty.”
Workers in the hotel’s food and beverage department were told they would not be given priority for rehiring if their position eventually returned. There had been discussions with State Senator Brad Hoylman’s office over the introduction of a state-level “right of recall” bill, which would require employers to rehire former employees. workers if their jobs returned.
It would appear that the results were that HTC-Union chose its battle and that was to choose between housekeeping and food and drink. “Although it took longer than we would have liked, we are delighted that the Marriott Marquis is now a union hotel and we warmly welcome the Marquis workers to our ranks,” added HTC President Rich Maroko. .