MADISON, Wis. (January 30, 2018) – You technically can’t call it a groundbreaking; after all, it’s four stories up. However, when HotelRED begins construction in the summer on its multi-floor addition, new general manager Ricardo Contreras will have fully settled in to his position, overseeing the operation of one of the Midwest’s most talked about boutique hotels. Along with the announcement of Contreras’ hiring, the hotel also announced Samantha Burke has joined the property as restaurant manager. HotelRED is located at 1501 Monroe St. directly across from the University of Wisconsin’s Camp Randall Stadium.
Contreras did not have to move far for the GM position at HotelRED, having previously served as general manager at Hilton Garden Inn in nearby Wisconsin Dells. His resume also includes management positions with Hilton in Indiana and, before that, with an independent boutique hotel in his hometown of Los Angeles. Contreras graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) with a degree in business and marketing. Along with management skills well-honed under the Hilton flag, he brings creative skills in social media marketing and photography, all adding up to a perfect fit for a creatively driven independent boutique property on the verge of growth.
HotelRED is adding three floors and 39 rooms to its current four-story, 48-room building. Floors five and six will be suites, while floor seven will house an event space, lounge, and decks with sweeping views of the neighborhood and university landmarks. J.H. Findorff & Son, with offices in Madison and Milwaukee, was awarded the construction contract, with interior design going to The Gettys Group, Chicago. The architect is Madison-based Strang.
Burke, on board as the new restaurant manager, is charged with overseeing service standards of the hotel’s lobby-level restaurant The Wise, as well as for event catering and room service. She’ll work closely with the hotel’s executive chef Mike Magee. Prior to this, Burke held positions at Yahara Bay Distillers and The Coppers Tavern, both Madison favorites, where she assisted with floor operations, events and cocktail menu creation. She is working toward a degree in business management.