STAMFORD, CT—Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. has named Achim Lenders, an industry veteran with 30 years of experience, as the company’s VP, Global Food and Beverage.
Lenders, who most recently served as Corporate SVP of Food and Beverage for Hyatt Hotels Corporation, will oversee the alignment and development of Starwood’s multi-billion dollar global food and beverage strategy, reporting to John Peyton, SVP of Global Initiatives.
In his new role, Lenders will lead the creation and execution of strategies to enhance Starwood’s restaurant, bar and banquet operations across nearly 1,300 restaurants and 930 bars in 100 countries. He will also lead Starwood’s Global Food and Beverage Council, driving the implementation of consistent systems and best-in-class practices across all nine Starwood brands.
“As a true and seasoned visionary in the competitive food and beverage space, Achim is the ideal leader to drive the ongoing development of Starwood’s renowned restaurant and bar concepts, and our banquet and catering business,” stated Peyton. “On behalf of the more than 50,000 associates around the world that make up our food and beverage team, I enthusiastically welcome Achim to Starwood.”
Lenders’ arrival at Starwood marks an important step in his more than 30-year food and beverage career that spans international positions both in and out of the kitchen. Born and raised in Germany, Lenders worked in a number of local German restaurants after culinary school, eventually joining Hyatt in 1988 as Chef de Cuisine in Australia. After holding various Executive Chef positions for Hyatt properties in Brazil, China, Japan, and the Philippines, Lenders joined Hyatt’s corporate team in 2005 as Director of Food & Beverage, and rose through the ranks to hold increasingly senior management positions, including VP-Corporate Chef of Hyatt North America, and VP, International Food & Beverage.
“I am thrilled to join Starwood and to have the opportunity to work with such a dynamic collection of brands, concepts, and people,” stated Lenders. “Starwood’s food and beverage portfolio grows stronger every day, and I look forward to working together with the Food & Beverage team furthering the distinctive quality and innovation of Starwood’s offerings throughout its global properties.”