Gracious Hospitality Management, the brand behind Michelin-starred COTE Korean Steakhouse and COTE Miami, has bolstered its senior leadership team with the addition of Alex Munoz-Suarez, Kent Krekorian, and Jacqueline Hensel who bring their extensive expertise to support in the company's expansive growth plans. The three new hires join as partners, alongside several of the company’s long term team.
“Over the last five years, Gracious Hospitality Management has developed a reputation for delivering unwavering hospitality and convivial cuisine,” says Simon Kim, Proprietor and CEO of Gracious Hospitality Management. “We’re pairing that success with a strong group of new leadership, bringing innovative ideas, passion, and a wealth of experience to propel the company into this next phase of growth and expansion.”
In addition to oversight by Simon Kim, Gracious Hospitality will be led by these seasoned executives in the hospitality space:
Alex Munoz-Suarez, Chief Operating Officer
Alex Munoz-Suarez recently joined Gracious Hospitality Management as COO, bringing vast knowledge of the hospitality industry and a hands-on approach as the company looks to expand its footprint over the next few years. Prior to joining the hospitality brand, Munoz-Suarez served as President of Chef David Chang's Momofuku for two years before being appointed to CEO of Fuku in 2019, where he led the expansion of the fast-casual fried-chicken concepts across the country into new brick-and-mortar stores and concessions throughout high-profile stadiums. His career also includes more than a decade as President of the Pacific Division for Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group (BBHG). Throughout his tenure at BBHG, Munoz-Suarez led the company’s growth from three to 32 restaurants domestically and internationally.
Kent Krekorian, Chief Financial Officer
Kent Krekorian has joined Gracious Hospitality Management as the new CFO, bringing a strong financial background to the executive leadership team. Before joining the company, Krekorian served as CFO for SimpleReach, a marketing technology company that was acquired by Nativo in 2019. He started his career as an investment analyst at Pacific Alternative Asset Management Company, an institutional investment firm focused on hedge funds and headquartered in Newport Beach, CA. Kent received his MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management and his BA in Economics from the University of Virginia.
Jacqueline Hensel, Vice President of Marketing & Communications
Jacqueline Hensel recently joined Gracious Hospitality Management as the company's first VP of Marketing & Communications. With more than a decade of experience in brand growth and storytelling, Hensel will spearhead all of the company’s marketing, communications and partnership initiatives surrounding existing and future concepts, focusing on media relations, external affairs, employee engagement and company branding. Prior to joining the hospitality brand, Hensel served as the Director of Marketing and Food Council at City Harvest for more than six years. Her experience also includes leading the marketing and communications initiatives for Michelin-starred Chef Bill Telepan and his restaurants, as well as acclaimed Chef Kurt Gutenbrunner and his portfolio of restaurants including Wallsé, Café Sabarsky, Upholstery Store: Food and Wine, and Blaue Gans.
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