SAN JOSE, CA–Today, Hilton announced the appointment of members of the hotel executive team at the 805-room Signia by Hilton San Jose, slated to open this spring as Signia by Hilton’s first California hotel and the second in the brand portfolio. The hotel executive team consists of Jimmy Sarfraz, general manager; Catherine Hendricks, complex director of sales and marketing; Nicole Kent, complex director of revenue management; and Hans Lentz, executive chef. The hotel is currently accepting reservations for April 25, 2022 and beyond.
Cradled by the redwood-covered Santa Cruz Mountains, Signia by Hilton San Jose will offer guests an unforgettable visit blending modern grandeur and sophisticated style in the heart of one of California’s sunniest cities. As part of Signia by Hilton, the hotel will offer extraordinary meetings and events capabilities, world-class design, state-of-the-art technology, premium wellness offerings and signature culinary experiences creating a desirable location to meet, explore and connect, perfect for sophisticated leisure, business and group travelers. The hotel’s debut follows last year’s opening of Signia by Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek and will be joined by Signia by Hilton Atlanta Georgia World Congress Center, expected to open in early 2024.
General Manager Jimmy Sarfraz
A hospitality veteran with over 15 years of experience, Jimmy Sarfraz joins Signia by Hilton San Jose as general manager from Hilton San Jose and Juniper Hotel Cupertino, Curio Collection by Hilton in Cupertino, California, where he served as complex general manager. In his new appointment, Sarfraz plays a pivotal role in driving plans for the re-opening of the landmark hotel. He is responsible for all aspects of the two-tower property and will lead the team in hotel operations, from marketing and hotel administration to guest services and satisfaction.
Prior to arriving in San Jose, Sarfraz was a hospitality consultant for various hotels in Malta. Before that, he held various Hilton leadership roles including hotel manager for the luxurious Conrad New York Downtown, Hilton’s first Conrad Hotels & Resorts property in New York, where he formed part of the pre-opening management team and opened the hotel in 2012. Sarfraz has also held various hotel executive team roles outside of the U.S., including London Hilton on Park Lane and Hilton Malta.
Among his long list of accomplishments includes overseeing multiple property refurbishments and renovations and serving as chair of the HBID board, board member of Team San Jose, an innovative partnership that promotes San Jose as a destination to stimulate economic development across the city’s hotels, arts, venues, and San Jose Convention and Visitors Bureau.
Complex Director of Sales and Marketing Catherine Hendricks
Having spent much of her life in San Jose and with over two decades of sales and marketing experience across northern California, Catherine Hendricks joins Signia by Hilton San Jose as complex director of sales and marketing. Hendricks will oversee efforts for both Signia by Hilton San Jose and Hilton San Jose, where she’s been since 2012. In her newly added role, Hendricks’ experience will be essential to introducing northern California to the Signa by Hilton brand and enabling the hotel to gain a superior market share of the city. She will oversee all sales, marketing and advertising efforts for both properties.
Before joining Hilton San Jose, Hendricks held various director of sales and marketing roles at other Hilton properties in the area, including DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pleasanton at the Club (formerly Hilton Pleasanton at the Club) and DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Modesto among other sales positions throughout the Silicon Valley. She is an active member of Team San Jose guiding sales strategies to partners in the community.
Hendricks holds a bachelor of science in accounting from California State University East Bay.
Complex Director of Revenue Management Nicole Kent
With over a decade of revenue management experience in the hospitality industry, Nicole Kent joins Signia by Hilton San Jose as complex director of revenue management for both Signia by Hilton San Jose and Hilton San Jose. In her new role, Nicole will be responsible for optimizing revenue performance and maximizing profitability for all areas of both properties.
Before she arrived in San Jose, Kent was the director of revenue management at the iconic La Quinta Resort & Club in California. Before that, she served as director of revenue management for the luxurious Conrad New York Midtown and Conrad New York Downtown, helping to drive RevPAR growth. She also held various revenue management positions at The Beekman, a Thompson Hotel in New York City, Morgans Hotel Group at the Mondrian LA in West Hollywood, California, and Avenue of the Arts, a Wyndham Hotel in Costa Mesa, California.
Kent holds a bachelor of science in hospitality administration/management from California State Polytechnic University.
Executive Chef Hans Lentz
Hans Lentz joins Signia by Hilton San Jose as executive chef with over 20 years of experience in global cuisine across Hawaii, Dubai, East Africa, Chicago, Istanbul and Miami. Most recently, he was the executive chef of Halekulani & Halepuna Hotel, a luxury hotel in Oahu, Hawaii. In his new position, chef Hans will oversee the property’s four food and beverage outlets and is responsible for the hotel’s culinary and banquet operations, menu development, concept and programming and in-room dining. Chef Hans’ experience in a variety of luxury five-star hotels and convention centers coupled with his extensive experience in hotel openings and restaurant concept launches will ensure Signia by Hilton San Jose becomes both a guest and local culinary destination.
Before his last role, chef Hans was the executive chef of the Hawaii Convention Center and before that, he held various culinary roles across the globe including resort culinary director for Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai and executive chef at Hilton Waikoloa Village, Mauna Kea Beach Resort, Kempinski Villa Rosa Nairobi Kenya & Kempinski Olare Mara along with other chef positions in Ethiopia, Istanbul and Miami.
Chef’s global experience is reflected in his passion for world cuisine enabling him to celebrate bold flavors utilizing both classic and modern techniques. He brings a modern interpretation of these different flavors to his dishes which are showcased in a variety of textures, tastes and colors, allowing for a truly immersive culinary experience.
Chef Hans has a degree in culinary arts, hotel, restaurant, and kitchen management from the Perlen Graben School of Culinary Arts where he is trained in classic French cuisine. Among his accolades includes Highfield Level 3 (a food safety and catering award) and the 2007 Bronze Star of Excellence for Chaîne des Rotissuers in Chicago.
Signia by Hilton San Jose Enhancements
Already an iconic landmark, and further enhanced with an extensive renovation, Signia by Hilton San Jose is poised to make an impression as the newest and most elevated hotel in Silicon Valley with 65,000 square feet of meeting space, including the area’s largest ballroom. Offering convenient access to the iconic Plaza de César Chávez Park, San Jose Convention Center and some of the city’s most prominent cultural venues, guests will be welcomed to a truly reimagined hotel experience with exceptional full-service amenities in the capital of Silicon Valley.
The acclaimed property was recently revamped with a wide-ranging makeover of the lobby and bar, including upgrades to the main entrance foyer and the guest registration areas offering a vibrant and impressive arrival experience. The renovation also encompasses a complete refresh of the property’s expansive fitness center with upgraded Technogym equipment and an outdoor rooftop pool offering views of the city and picturesque mountains. Visitors can also indulge in several distinct culinary experiences including Fountain restaurant for breakfast; Grill on the Alley, an American menu with chophouse favorites for lunch and dinner; and the hotel’s signature lobby bar and lounge for hand-crafted cocktails and light bites. The hotel is also debuting an elevated Grab & Go coming soon, offering guests and locals a great option to get fresh and delicious food on the go.
Additionally, the hotel’s North Tower is undergoing a complete bathroom renovation that will feature marble vanities and showers with residential-style fixtures as well as a separate makeup vanity, all of which will help elevate the guest experience and set the stage for a full renovation of all rooms in both towers, to be completed by early 2023.