• Meet Matthew Hurlburt, Leading by Example

     
    FROM THE Summer 2019 ISSUE
     

    Matthew Hurlburt talks staying organized, walking the walk and what it means to be part of the Kimpton Family.

For Matthew Hurlburt, the hospitality industry was love at first shift. It all started at a cozy hotel in Santa Ana, California, where he worked as an overnight front desk agent. He was originally inspired to take the job by his uncle, who managed the Tropicana Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.

“I was intrigued by his stories from his job, as well as the opportunity to work in such a vibrant, ever-changing environment,” he says.

It wasn’t long before Hurlburt was given more responsibility at the hotel and was able to delve into different departments and levels of operation. It was the first job he genuinely looked forward to. Hurlburt is happy to report that today, many years later, he still feels that way about both of his positions with Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants.

Hurlburt was recently appointed general manager of Kimpton Muse Hotel and area director of hotel operations for Pennsylvania and New York. Although the responsibilities of the two roles frequently overlap, maintaining balance and staying organized require meticulous time management on Hurlburt’s part. Finding the energy to keep up with both roles, however, is not a problem. He draws plenty of motivation from those around him.

“The great people I get to work with in our hotels here in New York and Pennsylvania inspire me on a daily basis. I am driven to give them every ounce of effort I can,” Hurlburt says.

In his role as area director of hotel operations, Hurlburt evaluates the performance metrics of his fellow general managers—the same performance metrics that he executes in his other role as a general manager. This allows him to walk in the shoes of his peers and lead by example. For Hurlburt, being a part of the Kimpton Family involves both this sense of connectedness and the drive to maintain an innovative approach to hospitality.

“When we get to help guests celebrate something, we take the responsibility very seriously, and we have so much fun doing it,” he says.

Event planning and experience design go hand in hand. Just ask Maria Moyano, experience designer for the Museum of Ice Cream (MOIC), based in NYC. “I think that everything is an event. You can go have coffee, and that’s an event. Everything is also an experience. You feel happy, and that’s an experience. It’s about what you are trying to get out of the event—and then how does an experience elevate it,” says Moyano.

 

In the wake of COVID-19, the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB) set out to provide planners with up-to-date intel and sound advice, appointing Dr. David Nash, founding dean emeritus of the Jefferson College of Population Health, in the process as its chief health advisor. Dr. Nash and Kavin Schieferdecker, senior vice president of the CVB’s convention division, share how the partnership came to be and its potential lasting impact.

 

A lifelon New Yorker, Emily Schmalholz was a TV producer at VH1 before moving into the events industry and landing at Westchester’s The Capitol Theatre. As director of special events at the historic space and its bar, Garcia’s, she says creating events and working in television have lots in common. “The ultimate goal for both is to tell a great story and create memorable moments.” Schmalholz, a self-described “event therapist,” had more to say about her work.

What’s the biggest difference between producing for television and producing events?