Slated to open in August 2020, Renaissance Milwaukee West, along with the adjoining chef-driven destination restaurant Eldr+Rime, announces the appointments of Vik Khokhar as General Manager, Chantal Bazzoni-Boncher as Director of Sales and Marketing, Michael Laughran as Director of Beverage and Food Outlets, Gary Baca as Executive Chef and Alex Lyskowicz as Executive Sous Chef. Developed and set to be managed by Concord Hospitality, both venues and its leadership team aim to provide a welcoming, luxurious destination to Milwaukee’s metropolitan area, as well as inspire community confidence that the hospitality industry will soon bounce back.
“We could not be more excited to welcome Vik, Chantal, Michael, Gary, and Alex to this project and the Concord family,” says Mark Laport, President and CEO of Concord Hospitality. “With their combined experience and longevity in the hospitality industry, we are confident they will lead the team to ensure every guest’s visit is memorable and thoughtful.”
With more than two decades of industry experience in luxury and lifestyle hotels, Vik Khokhar has been appointed the General Manager to open Renaissance Milwaukee West. Born in New Delhi, Khokhar spent his early days in India before he relocated to the Netherlands to pursue a career in the hospitality business. He studied hospitality administration at the International School of Hospitality Management in Friesland and began his career with The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company in St. Louis, Mo., where he was recognized as “Leader of the Year” for his uncompromising commitment to quality and results. Most recently, Khokhar served as the Director of Hotel Operations of the Renaissance Chicago Downtown. Under his leadership, the hotel was recognized as “Hotel of the Year” in the Americas two years in a row due to stellar performance on all business priorities, including record-setting financial and guest satisfaction results. A resident of Wauwatosa since 2007, Khokhar looks forward to establishing the hotel as a revitalizing retreat within the community.
Chantal Bazzoni-Boncher, Renaissance Milwaukee West’s new Director of Sales and Marketing, lives and breathes the hospitality industry from growing up in family-owned hospitality businesses in Canada. After graduating with a degree in Hotel & Restaurant Management from Confederation College in Ontario, Bazzoni-Boncher joined CSM Corporation, where she worked with various hotels in the Milwaukee area. In 2018, she was awarded CSM Director of Sales of the Year. With Renaissance Milwaukee West, Bazzoni-Boncher aims to lead the Sales & Catering Department in generating top-line revenue growth and business for the hotel and restaurant.
Joining the team as the Director of B&F Outlets, Michael “Mick” Laughran will oversee all on-property dining aspects, including the lobby lounge, market dining, in-room dining program, as well as the operations of the adjacent restaurant, Eldr+Rime. Before joining Renaissance Milwaukee West, Laughran served as the Fine Dining Manager of Potawatomi Hotel and Casino and the General Manager of Maxie’s Milwaukee. During his time at Potawatomi Hotel and Casino, Laughran oversaw the multi-million dollar remodel of the casino’s Dream Dance Steakhouse, and Wine Spectator awarded the restaurant’s wine list a Best of Award of Excellence in 2020. Laughran holds a Level 1 Certification from the Court of Master Sommeliers.
Coming to Milwaukee and Eldr+Rime from Chicago’s western suburbs, Executive Chef Gary Baca has expertly led several restaurants over his career spanning more than two decades. Specializing in steak, seafood, and progressive American cuisines, Baca most recently worked at Michael Jordan’s Steak House and has previously been the Executive Chef and Partner at Lettuce Entertain You, overseeing culinary operations at Chicago’s Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab, Scoozi and more. A La Cañada Flintridge, California-native, Baca studied at Santa Barbara City College and University of California, Berkeley.
The Executive Sous Chef, Alex Lyskowicz, joins the team after previously serving as the Executive Chef at the Iron Horse Hotel. While there, Lyskowicz oversaw all food and beverage outlets at the hotel as well as offsite catering and events. Chef Lyskowicz specializes in rustic wood-fire cooking and Wisconsin farm to table cuisine.