The Tempe Tourism Office team is fortunate to work with some outstanding hospitality professionals. These professionals help shape the guest’s experience, provide information about what to see and do in Tempe, and help make a conference run smoothly.
I had the opportunity to sit down with Jack Minetti, the Conference Concierge at the Tempe Mission Palms Hotel in the heart of Downtown Tempe. He is the only Conference Concierge in Tempe. It is evident when you meet Jack that he has a real love for people, which shows in his work.
Jack is originally from Pittsburgh and set his sights on the sunny state of Arizona in the 1980s. He quickly found a job in the hospitality industry.
Jack’s work experience in Arizona includes working for InFlight Food Prep, the famed Estelle’s Jazz Club and the Hyatt Regency as Lead Food Captain. Winning multiple awards for industry excellence, Jack continued to grow and expand his horizons.
In 1999, Jack found his way to the Tempe Mission Palms Hotel as Lead Food Captain. While working several key events, Jack began to recognize that guests had many questions and needs. Jack brought his observations to Cheryl Martin, his supervisor, and said “I want to help these people have a meaningful experience during their stay here.”
Recognizing Jack’s knack for impromptu action and ideas, the department of Conference Concierge was created. Jack’s mission is to assure that your conference or meeting goes as smoothly as possible. Jack and the staff at the Tempe Mission Palms make sure that every detail is executed as planned, and they always proactively prepare for the unexpected. Along with checking to make sure that the meeting set up is perfect, Jack is more than happy to make personal recommendations to attendees about what to see and do in the area when they have free time. His desk is in the heart of the conference space, so attendees and meeting planners don’t have to go out of their way to find him.
The tool that Jack says he can’t live without is communication. Communication comes in many forms, and Jack prides himself on anticipating the needs of others. Being able to recognize these needs makes all the difference in the world.
One time during a conference at the end of a snack break, as many attendees were headed back to the general session, Jack noticed one guest appeared to be choking. Jack was able to take action and apply his first aid training. Years later, he still receives a holiday card from the guest he helped that day.
Jack’s advice for anyone looking to explore a career in hospitality is simple. “You have to genuinely love to interact with people, and want to happily help them in any way possible.”
I asked Jack what makes Tempe a special place. Jack feels that “Tempe has a great energy and genuine character. Tempe’s residents, students, and business community bring a modern energy to a quaint Arizona city.”
So the next time your group plans a meeting at the Tempe Mission Palms, rest assured that Jack and the staff will be there to make your meeting a success. Stop by and say hello to Jack, your day will be better for it.