Teamwork Makes HQ Work.
Helmed by award-winning chef, restaurateur, TV personality and cookbook author Akhtar Nawab, Hospitality HQ’s dynamic and comprehensive team prioritizes high-quality service at all levels, producing systems for food and beverage concepts which consistently optimize the guest experience.
The breadth of Hospitality HQ’s portfolio ranges from food hall development and management, to Michelin-awarded restaurants, hotel operations, banquet and catering operations, and fast-casual concepts. HHQ is currently the fastest-growing food hall management company in the country, with critically-acclaimed restaurant and communal dining projects located nationwide.
Chef Akhtar Nawab
CO-CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER / FOUNDING PARTNER
Akhtar Nawab is chef and owner of Alta Calidad in New York, Otra Vez in New Orleans, and Prather’s on the Alley in Washington, DC. He is also founding partner and Co-CEO of Hospitality HQ (HHQ), a creative consulting and management group which offers bespoke solutions for culinary-driven concepts across the country.
In 2017, Nawab opened his innovative Mexican restaurant Alta Calidad in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, which earned a Michelin Bib Gourmand award in 2018 and 2019 and continues to thrive as a neighborhood mainstay.
Nawab and his business partner Michael Wetherbee launched Hospitality HQ in 2019, which quickly grew into one of the country’s premier food hall management firms with properties in Omaha, NE (Inner Rail Food Hall), Chicago, IL (Dr. Murphy’s Food Hall), Houston, TX (Lyric Market, opening Winter 2021) and more projects soon to be announced.
CO-CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER / FOUNDING PARTNER
Michael has worked with some of the world’s most renowned chefs, restaurants and operators including David Chang’s Momofuku Ma Peche (awarded two stars by The New York Times), as well as AvroKo’s PUBLIC (one Michelin star) and Saxon + Parole (awarded one star by The New York Times).
In 2017, Michael opened Alta Calidad with his partner, chef Akhtar Nawab, and has been instrumental in growing the company from a single restaurant to helming the diverse portfolio of food & beverage assets Hospitality HQ has today.
Michael’s range of operational experience spans from fine dining to fast casual restaurants, hotels, food halls, and beyond, affording him the unique ability to create dynamic and memorable food and beverage experiences for guests of any Hospitality HQ property.
Chief Operating Officer
Bobby is a leading food and beverage expert, with a proven track record in hospitality consulting, innovative place-making, restaurant design and construction, and concept development. A native of New Orleans, his love for hospitality and its impact on communities began at a young age working in kitchens of some of the city’s most iconic restaurants.
Prior to forming his own consultancy in 2019, Bobby served as the Director of Business Development and Consulting at the world renown Union Square Hospitality Group (USHG) in New York City, working with leaders throughout the organization to drive strategic business growth. Additionally, he led USHG’s consulting business with the goal of expanding Enlightened Hospitality beyond the USHG family of businesses.
Bobby previously worked for Goldman Sachs in London, where he ran the day to day hospitality operations of the firm and oversaw development projects in various B&I venues, working closely with the real estate teams to strengthen the organization’s own hospitality services. Earlier in his career, he gained project management experience at USHG, supporting several restaurant developments and new business openings.
CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER
Amelia is a brand and marketing leader with a demonstrated history of creating and growing hospitality and consumer packaged goods brands. As a skilled operations professional with expertise in brand strategy, growth and digital marketing, Amelia drives growth by aligning brand and marketing strategy with financial goals.
Prior to joining the HHQ team, Amelia worked as a consultant and served as the Director of Marketing at Union Square Hospitality Group, the award-winning family of businesses founded by Danny Meyer. Amelia led the team that shaped visual identity and messaging for 9 new concepts and 2 growth brands, in addition to driving public relations and marketing efforts for 25 existing brands in over 30 locations, primarily in NYC but also with outposts in Chicago, Washington DC and Upstate NY.
Prior to joining USHG, Amelia supported the growth of several artisanal food companies, including Sir Kensington’s Gourmet Scooping Ketchup, Steve’s Craft Ice Cream, and Pure Food and Wine/OneLuckyDuck.com.
CHIEF CULINARY OFFICER
Chef Cruz Goler has over 20 years of professional restaurant experience, ranging from four-star French and Italian restaurants like Jean-George and Del Posto, vegetarian Michelin-starred Nix, La Pecora Bianca, Lupa and multi-outlet hotels such as The Standard. Beyond New York City, Cruz has opened restaurants in Hong Kong and cooked his way through South America and Mexico.
Cruz has always integrated the greenmarket community and small farmers into every project he’s worked on, and his role with Hospitality HQ is no exception. In addition to focusing on culinary operations and brand development, Cruz’s focus at HHQ often includes launching green initiatives and strengthening existing projects with efforts around locality and sustainability.