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Advisory Board Introduction: Steve Cenicola

Updated: Apr 23, 2021

Steve Cenicola of The Vintage Club was welcomed to the Club Leaders Forum Advisory Board for the 2021-22 term.

Steve Cenicola began his hospitality career as a dishwasher and busser over 40 years ago on Long Island, New York. After obtaining an Associate's degree in hospitality at SUNY Delhi and a Bachelors in Business at NYIT, he was fortunate enough to land a management trainee position at the LaGuardia Marriott. 21 years, seven hotels and many amazing mentors later, he arrived at the Renaissance Esmeralda Resort in beautiful Indian Wells, California. As Director of Operations for the 560-room $60 million property, he was asked to assist with the conversion of the recently acquired Stouffers Hotel property to the Marriott brand and philosophy of operations.

Five years into that position he was asked to move yet once again. The thought of uprooting his wife Elisabeth and two young children one more time with the large corporate hotel chain allowed him to make an easy family decision of accepting the position as Clubhouse Manager at BIGHORN Golf Club in Palm Desert California. Two years into the position he was promoted to the Club's General Manager where he helped guide the Operations of the $22 million, 550-member Club for the next eight years. During those eight years, he and his team improved food and beverage revenue from $1.5 million to just over $5 million prior to his departure in 2014.

In January 2015, Steve was asked to join the beautiful Vintage Club in Indian Wells, California as its General Manager and CEO. His task was to oversee the $26 million renovation of their 85,000 square-foot Clubhouse, manage escalating costs, improve employee retention and help enhance the lifestyle of the then 35-year-old prestigious Club with 500 members. With the Board of Directors' support to eliminate all committees except Finance and Membership, he and his team went to work.

Amongst many accomplishments, his leadership team was able to save over $1 million in food and beverage costs while increasing dinner covers in both restaurants from $17,000 to $33,000 in the seasonal operation. Most rewarding for the entire Vintage team was the four-year running Platinum Club recognition as the #1 rated Club in California and #5 in the country.

Steve's hospitality philosophy is very simple and straight forward: His business triangle focuses on the employee, member and financials.

Every decision revolves around that triangle and anything implemented which improves all three of those areas are a win and immediately implemented. Now that his children, Ryan and Kyle, are grown and living their own inspirational lives, Steve looks forward to what opportunities may lie ahead for him and his wife, Elisabeth, along their wonderful journey.

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