Beverage Ambassador, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, Asia Pacific; Beverage Manager, Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong
Four Seasons Tenure
- Since 2017
- First Four Seasons Assignment: Head Bartender at Charles H. at Four Seasons Hotel Seoul
- Charles H., Four Seasons Hotel Seoul; Dandelyan Bar, The Mondrian Hotel London; American Bar & Beaufort Bar, Savoy Hotel, London; Hotel de Russie, Rome
- Rome, Italy
- Studied Law, University Roma Tre, Rome
- Italian, English, French, Spanish
Since coming to Asia, Lorenzo Antinori had quickly made his mark on the rapidly evolving cocktail scene in the region. Starting in Korea in 2017 overseeing the highly awarded Charles H. bar at Four Seasons Hotel Seoul, Antinori then moved on to Hong Kong in 2019 as Beverage Manager, Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong and also supports bar operations in the region in his role as Beverage Ambassador for Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts Asia Pacific.
As Head Bartender at Four Seasons Hotel Seoul, Antinori shaped the cocktail program leading their signature bar Charles H. to achieve ranking on Asia’s 50 Best Bar list in its first year. Now based in Hong Kong, Antinori is making his mark in one of the most vibrant cocktail scenes in Asia.
In Hong Kong, Antinori was tasked with elevating the cocktail program in Caprice Bar, placing it at #34 in Asia’s 50 Best Bars and at #10 in 2021. In July 2021, the long-awaited ARGO was open, a bar that explores the world of spirits and innovation and celebrates the innovators in the world of spirits-making, and at the same time, explores its surroundings and how these influences today’s drinking culture. Antinori’s vision for the venue is that it will trigger guests’ curiosity and excitement for innovative spirits, cocktails, and the great stories behind them. Under the leadership of Antinori, ARGO made an impressive debut on Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022 and World’s 50 Best Bars 2022 lists ranking#3 and #28 respectively. The recognition reflects the dedication of the ARGO team to pursue excellence in their craft.
Antinori reflects that the very nature of Hong Kong as the gateway to Asia makes for a fertile breeding ground for creativity in cocktails. “Hong Kong is a very special place. The mix of East and West creates a melting pot of ideas and culture. Living and working among this density of talent, I see nothing but opportunity. The creativity that is unleashed within this environment will take my own cocktail inspiration to the next level.”
The cultural melting pot and high intensity of Hong Kong are very different from Korea, where Antinori was known for actively engaging with customers in an environment that otherwise tended toward quiet and gracious. His ability to connect with customers won over the patrons of Charles H. - it is that very social currency that underpins his success both in Hong Kong and in the region. “We want our bartenders to be engaging and open to connecting with guests while delivering outstanding product and service.”
Antinori stumbled upon his calling while studying law “very badly” in Rome. Following a year-long, head-clearing break in Australia, he returned to school and also took a part-time job at a bar whose “very passionate” owner got him thinking that law wasn’t really his thing. “I always liked to party and entertain. I was always the guy trying to gather people together. The bar scene was where I belonged.”
He moved right into hotel bars – “they carry a magic aura with them” – first in Rome, then in London. There his talents contributed to one bar being honoured as “Best International Hotel Bar” and the cocktail line up of another scoring “Best International Menu” at annual Tales of the Cocktail gatherings in New Orleans.
Antinori sees his role with Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts as an exciting opportunity to elevate the beverage operation of an iconic property and brand that is growing rapidly in Asia Pacific. At Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, Antinori has the opportunity to learn from and contribute to the culinary oeuvre being produced by the Michelin starred chefs at the Hotel. “I am honoured to be part of a restaurant and bar team with so many Michelin stars under one roof. Along with our team, we work together to elevate the cocktail experience to meet the exceptionally high standards of experience already being produced. In creating cocktails, we look to tradition but with a very contemporary approach, much as you would expect to find on the plates of Chef Guillaume Galliot and Chef Chan Yan Tak. We want our cocktails to be recognisable and appreciated by the Hotel’s longtime supporters while attracting a new generation of consumers and cocktail lovers.”