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Saturday, July 23 • 12:30pm - 2:00pm
No Reservations - Hotel Bars Old and New

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When you think of the Golden Age of the Cocktail, many of the names of the bars we revere are not so much bars as bars within hotels - the American Bar, the Old Waldorf Astoria, the Caribe Hilton, and many more. Even the renaissance of the cocktail was fueled in large part by bars like the Met in London, and the trend spread around the globe fueled by a jet set of cocktail lovers and the bartenders who served them. The 21st Century traveler wanted the same standard of drinks, and service, whether they were in San Francisco or Sydney or Seoul, and top bartenders were recruited from cocktail capitals to bring that standard to far flung fields. But the Hotel Bar is both consistent and continually evolving. What makes a great Hotel Bar, and a great Hotel Bartender?  Our well travelled panel of hotel insiders and regular guests - Josh Wagner of the Edition Group, Erik Lorincz of the Savoy Hotel, Chris Lowder of Charles H in Seoul, travel writer Mark Ellwood, together with bar industry veterans Simon Ford and Jacob Briars - will take you on a journey through time and place. From the early hotel bars where Willard and Thomas plied their trade, to the Gilded Age, the Golden Age, the Jet Age and beyond, learn how the Hotel Bar took the Cocktail across America and around the world.  We will explore what makes a great hotel bar, go behind the scenes to explore the constraints and challenges of bringing great cocktails to life in a Hotel environment, and explore how the Hotel Bar is evolving to serve a new generation of travelers, and what that means for young bartenders who aspire to work in this incredible part of the industry, and learn the secrets of successful hotel management. We will explore how hotel operators like the Ace are making the bar the central part of the hotel experience, and how some bar owners are taking the logical next step, and opening hotels themselves. And we'll reveal the Hotel Bars we think set the standard today and in years to come.

avatar for Jacob Briars

Jacob Briars

Advocacy Director, Bacardi
Jacob Briars likes to describe himself as New Zealand’s 7th most famous bartender, but usually that just gets people asking where New Zealand is and who the other 6 bartenders are. For the past few years he has travelled the world as a much-loved spirits educator for some of the world’s most respected and exciting spirit brands. Jacob is the head of training and education for Bacardi, the world’s largest family-owned spirits company... Read More →

avatar for Mark Ellwood

Mark Ellwood

British-born, New York–based Mark Ellwood has lived out of a suitcase for most of his adult life. Mark writes regularly about luxury, including cocktail culture, for the likes of the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Departures and Condé Nast Traveler, where he is a contributing editor. | | He has interviewed the world’s oldest supermodel (she’s 75 and counting), trekked to a $10bn art island in rural Japan that looked like a Bond... Read More →
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Simon Ford

Co-founder, The 86 Co
Simon is a leading voice of the global cocktail and bar industry with over 20 years experience in bartending, educating on cocktails & spirits and marketing some of the biggest spirits brands on the planet. He is regularly invited to lead education sessions, judge global competitions, and deliver seminars at international conferences such as the NY Food & Wine Festival, Sydney Bar Show, London Cocktail week, The CIA’s... Read More →
avatar for Erik Lorincz

Erik Lorincz

Head Bartender, American bar, The Savoy
Erik started his career graduating from the Hospitality School in his native Slovakia in 1999. Shortly afterwards he came across the first bartending book by Roman Uhlir. This inspired Erik greatly and he decided to take up the opportunity to learn about bartending. He joined a three month intensive bartending program in Prague run by Roman Uhlir; who became his first mentor. | In January 2004, Erik decided to move to London to improve his... Read More →
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Chris Lowder

Head Bartender, Four Seasons
Chris Lowder is Head Bartender at the Four Seasons in Seoul, South Korea. As Head Bartender, Chris is responsible for cocktail creation and beverage menu curation for the hotel's six bars and restaurants, as well as banquets and room service. Within just five months of opening, his flagship bar Charles H was named by Drinks International as one of the 50 Best Bars in Asia (2016). Chris joined Four Seasons in 2015 from the Michelin-starred NoMad... Read More →
avatar for Josh Wagner

Josh Wagner

Director of Culture & Entertainment, Miami Beach EDITION
Joshua Wagner, Director of Culture and Entertainment for The Miami Beach EDITION, began his career in the entertainment and hospitality industry at a young age. While an undergraduate student at University of Wisconsin, Wagner and his friends founded a lucrative entertainment and promotions company dealing in concerts and large-scale events. After graduating college in 2003, Wagner relocated to Miami Beach full-time. Looking to further develop... Read More →

avatar for Bacardi USA

Bacardi USA


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