Mercadito Hospitality
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Reservations | Book a Table

Dinner

sun-mon: 5pm-11pm
tue-thur: 5pm-12am
fri-sat: 5pm-1am

Brunch

sat-sun: 12pm-4pm

Lunch

mon-fri: 11:30am-3pm

Brunch

sat: 11am-3pm
sun: 11am-4pm

Dinner

sun-mon: 5pm-12am
tue-thur: 5pm-1am
fri: 5pm-2am
sat: 5pm-3am

Lunch

mon-fri: 11am–3pm

Brunch

sat-sun: 6:30am–3pm

Dinner

sun-mon: 5pm–10pm
tue-thurs: 5pm–11pm
fri–sat: 5pm–12am

Hours of Operation

mon-thurs: 4pm-12am
fri: 11am-2am
sat: 11am-3am
sun: 11am-12am

Events Calendar

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Gift Cards

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Private Dining

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Employment

Join our Team on the following positions

  • Bartender, Mercadito Chicago, Chicago

    Mercadito Hospitality is hiring experienced bartenders for the Mercadito Kinzie location. Mercadito has a fun and unique cocktail program, and positions are available immediately.

    Qualifications include:
    - open availability
    - a positive attitude
    - great work ethic
    - background in bottle service and cocktail-ing is preferred
    - food service experience is preferred

    Send us your resume

    Apply for "Bartender" at "Mercadito Chicago, Chicago"

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  • Head Host, Mercadito Chicago, Chicago

    Mercadito Restaurant is looking for hosts who are excited about customer service and working in the restaurant industry. We are in need of a lead host, as well as door hosts. This is a great opportunity to grow with an expanding company!

    Qualified applicants should have the following characteristics:
    - Open Table experience
    - Organized and detail oriented
    - Ability to work under pressure
    - Weekend availability
    - Extremely clean, groomed appearance
    - Excellent customer service skills

    Send us your resume

    Apply for "Head Host" at "Mercadito Chicago, Chicago"

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  • Servers and Hosts!, Mercadito Fish

    Mercadito Fish is seeking skilled HOSTS and SERVERS! If you are passionate about hospitality and genuinely interested in taking care of people around you, Mercadito Fish may be the perfect environment for you. To contribute to the success of Mercadito Hospitality and become a member of our outstanding team, please come apply!

    Please apply in person between 2pm and 4pm Monday through Friday @ Mercadito Fish
    10 E. Delaware Pl., Chicago IL 60611

    Applicants should meet the following requirements:
    - 1 year of experience
    - Organized and detail oriented
    - Able to multitask and handle high volume
    - Extremely clean, groomed appearance
    - Excellent customer service skills

    Send us your resume

    Apply for "Servers and Hosts!" at "Mercadito Fish"

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  • PM Line Cooks, Mercadito Fish

    Mercadito Hospitality is hiring full-time, PM line cooks for its Gold Coast restaurant, Mercadito Fish.

    Applicants should have the following qualifications:
    - 2 years of kitchen experience
    - Full time availability
    - Be able to multitask and work under pressure
    - Basic knowledge of English

    INTERESTED APPLICANTS PLEASE SEND RESUME OR APPLY IN PERSON BETWEEN 2PM AND 4PM. Position is available immediately.

    10 E Delaware between State and Rush St

    Send us your resume

    Apply for "PM Line Cooks" at "Mercadito Fish"

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  • Managers, Mercadito Hospitality Corporate

    Mercadito Hospitality seeks talented, enthusiastic and experienced managers. This is a great opportunity to grow in a company that is rapidly expanding. Applicants should have at least 4 years of restaurant management experience, should be able to multitask and work under pressure, be organized, have good communication skills, be willing to go out of their way to get the job done and be very efficient. POS (Micros preferably) and Open Table knowledge is necessary. Applicant must have a passion for the restaurant industry, be a creative problem solver and have a resourceful attitude. Proficient in management procedures is a must.

    Position reports to General Manager and Managing Partners. This is a full time position available immediately.

    Send us your resume

    Apply for "Managers" at "Mercadito Hospitality Corporate"

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  • Marketing Internship, Mercadito Hospitality Corporate

    Job Title: Marketing Intern

    Opportunity Type: Internship

    Description:

    Mercadito Hospitality is currently seeking an enthusiastic and extremely organized intern. Applicant must be proactive, self sufficient, and a resourceful problem solver. Applicant must also possess a positive attitude, multi-tasking abilities, and the ability to accept constructive feedback. Experience in marketing, social media, pr or graphic design is preferred. Interest in the hospitality industry is a plus.

    Position reports to Director of Marketing & PR and to Marketing Managers.

    Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

    - Conceptualizing posts for social media networks

    - Photography

    - Research

    - Maintaining brand identity and consistency

    - Creating new promotions from beginning to end

    - Writing menus, press releases, and promotion copy

    6 month commitment required

    Position is available immediately

    Interested candidates send resume to:

    natalie@mercaditohospitality.com

    Director of Marketing & PR

    Send us your resume

    Apply for "Marketing Internship" at "Mercadito Hospitality Corporate"

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  • Social Media Internship, Mercadito Hospitality Corporate

    Job Title: Social Media Intern

    Opportunity Type: Internship

    Description:

    Mercadito Hospitality is currently seeking an enthusiastic and extremely organized intern. Applicant must be proactive, self sufficient, and a resourceful problem solver. Applicant must also possess a positive attitude, multi-tasking abilities, and the ability to accept constructive feedback. Experience in marketing, social media, pr or graphic design is preferred. Interest in the hospitality industry is a plus.

    Position reports to Director of Marketing & PR and to Marketing Managers.

    Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

    - Conceptualizing posts for social media networks

    - Researching new social media topics and platforms

    - Maintaining brand identity and consistency

    - Developing relationships and communicating with online followers

    - Researching and organizing relevant off-site events

    6 month commitment required

    Position is available immediately

    Interested candidates send resume to:

    natalie@mercaditohospitality.com

    Director of Marketing & PR

    Send us your resume

    Apply for "Social Media Internship" at "Mercadito Hospitality Corporate"

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  • Video & Film Internship, Mercadito Hospitality Corporate

    Job Title: Video & Film Intern

    Opportunity Type: Internship

    Description:

    Mercadito Hospitality is currently seeking an enthusiastic and extremely organized intern. Applicant must be proactive, self sufficient, and a resourceful problem solver. Applicant must also possess a positive attitude, multi-tasking abilities, and the ability to accept constructive feedback. Interest in the hospitality industry is a plus.

    Position reports to Director of Marketing & PR and to Marketing Managers.

    Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

    - Assisting in concept development

    - Camera Work

    - Editing

    - Coordinating filming and production

    - Research

    6 month commitment required

    Position is available immediately

    Interested candidates send resume to:

    natalie@mercaditohospitality.com

    Director of Marketing & PR

    Send us your resume

    Apply for "Video & Film Internship" at "Mercadito Hospitality Corporate"

    All fields are required

  • Executive & Sous Chef, Mercadito Red Rock, LV

    Mercadito Hospitality is hiring executive and sous chefs for their new Vegas venture, Mercadito Red Rock. This a great opportunity for a chef to grow with an expanding company.
    SOUS CHEF applicants should have the following qualifications:
    - 3 years of kitchen experience
    - Able to manage a large kitchen staff
    - Experience in multiple stations in the kitchen
    - Flexible availability
    - Be able to multitask and work under pressure
    - Motivated and Self-Driven
    - Extremely clean
    EXECUTIVE CHEF should have the following characteristics:
    - 6 years of experience
    - Strong management skills
    - Fluent in English & Spanish
    - Able to manage a large kitchen staff
    - Motivated and Self-Driven
    - Extremely clean
    - Able to multitask

    Send us your resume

    Apply for "Executive & Sous Chef" at "Mercadito Red Rock, LV"

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About Us

Mercadito Hospitality has grown from its first New York City restaurant location in 2004 to become a renowned restaurant group. The popularity of the group’s restaurants can be attributed to Partners Alfredo and Felipe Sandoval, innovative culinary interpretations created by Chef/Partner Patricio Sandoval, and its joint venture with renowned consultants Paul Tanguay and Tad Carducci – the Tippling Bros – who bring inimitable flavor profiles to the group’s beverage programs.

Based in Chicago, the group owns and operates restaurants and bars across the U.S. including the flagship concept, Mercadito in Miami, Chicago, and New York City; Double A, a cocktail lounge located beneath Mercadito Chicago; Tavernita and Barcito in Chicago’s River North neighborhood; and Mercadito Fish at Chicago’s Talbott Hotel.

MH Catering was launched in 2013 and the group’s newest concepts, Tippling Hall (Chicago) and Mercadito Counter (Chicago) will open late 2013. Additional projects in Las Vegas, Philadelphia are slated to open in 2014.

For more information, please visit :

Services

With proven success in concept-to-market hotel restaurants as well as with stand-alone operations, MH’s creative, innovative and trendsetting restaurants continue to garner industry acclaim. Whether it is the conceptual approach, or a partnership with a celebrity chef, MH positions the style of the restaurant to your guest.

MH team’s knowledge is grounded in their experience as consumers and connoisseurs, and then improved through decades of restaurant management. MH provides advice on food cost and menu engineering and helps you finding the freshest ingredients and most reliable purveyors. MH’s objectives will help increase new customers and loyalty.

MH can provide full service management, which includes restaurant operations, culinary development and kitchen operations, beverage development and bar operations, marketing, social media and public relations, graphic and web design and development.

Additional consulting services include human resources, bookkeeping, financial services and interior design.

Full Service Management

Additional Consulting Services

Restaurant Operations

From the creation of a concept to everyday operations, MH can create, develop and execute an entire new concept. Having opened and operated multiple successful multi-unit or independent restaurants throughout the US, MH expertise relies on developing profitable businesses committing to our guests and delivering an exceptional experience.

Highlights include:

  • Conceptualization
  • Location search, lease negotiation, creation of agreements and legal documents
  • Construction and licenses
  • Menu Development
  • Hiring and Training
  • Systems, Procedures and Cost Control
  • Brand Positioning (marketing, design and public relations)

Culinary Development and Kitchen Operations

MH believes that guest satisfaction starts with great quality food. Having a team of chefs and culinary experts on all types of cuisines and backgrounds gives MH the tools to evaluate, assess, conceptualize and execute culinary programs.

Highlights include:

  • Nationally renowned chefs
  • Exceptional quality of food
  • International cuisines
  • Menu development and planning

Beverage Development and Bar Operations

MH offers a specialized beverage team that can visualize a concept, design bars, develop innovative cocktail creations, develop wine, beer, sake or wine lists to perfection.

MH’s beverage department offers strong expertise in brand endorsements, beverage education, product launches, and inventory control and procedures. It’s commitment to beverage education set us apart from any other restaurant group.

Highlights include:

  • Restaurants and Bar’s Programs
  • Brand endorsements
  • Training and education
  • Menu and lists development
  • Inventory control
  • Strong relationships with renowned brands

Graphic & Web Design

MH offers a group of experts that can help develop a brand from the very beginning or help you rebrand the already existing one. The team is composed of marketers, graphic designers and programmers with a variety of backgrounds, complementary experiences, different work styles and different commercial experience. What turns us into a team is our passion for brands and innovation. We think outside the box and we understand consumers.

Highlights include:

  • Brand development & positioning in the marketplace
  • Logo design and branding guidelines
  • Website design and creation
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • App development
  • Menu design

Other Independent Consulting Services

MH’s team of experts is able to make a quick assessment of the status of your establishment, evaluate how you are doing and how to make your business better. MH is able to consult in any of the following sectors and give you results will make your business succeed.

  • Culinary
  • Beverage
  • Training
  • Marketing
  • Social Media
  • Bookkeeping
  • Human Resources
  • Interior Design

Policy Statement

MH offers the above mentioned services only when having full control over the overall decisions on operations, kitchen, beverage and marketing, bookkeeping and human resources.

Marketing, Social Media & Public Relations

MH Marketing programs start with a good idea and they end with a full restaurant. The public relations strategies are based on both editorial calendars and marketing holidays. MH follow’s market trends and innovative ideas to attract media’s attention. Its social media programs are innovative and designed to attack a local market.

MH’s marketing initiatives are driven by different angles and design individually for every business based on:

  • Day/Time: with the objective of bringing covers at specific time periods or days of the week
  • Sales: when the objective is to increase average check, increasing total covers for the day or increasing total sales.
  • Awareness: when the objective is to create awareness or introduce the concept to new markets
  • Media: when the main objective is to generate media placements

MH develops effective marketing campaigns that generate exposure on social media, conventional media, and by word of mouth, which translate into number of covers.

Highlights include:

  • Creativity and innovation
  • Creation of marketing plans
  • Developing marketing campaigns
  • Event development
  • Copy writing and editing
  • Strong email campaign
  • Strong social media expertise

Team

Born in Mexico City, Sandoval grew up surrounded by food. Since a very early age, he has been motivated by the challenges inherent in managing a restaurant and its personnel. Sandoval’s vast experience opening and operating restaurants has taken him to numerous cities, enriching his know-how with every new challenge he has faced.

Though his vision continually looks to the future, Sandoval’s roots are firmly planted in the past. His father opened the world-renowned Madeiras restaurant in 1980 in Acapulco, where he was instilled at a very early age with a passion for food and operations. By the age of 11, that enthusiasm was expressed by his involvement in the logistics and operations of his father’s restaurant, where he quickly confirmed his desire to dedicate himself to the field.

Following his ambition, and motivated by the challenge and the constant need to “create,” in 1997 Sandoval moved to New York to help older brother, Richard, open one of the first high-end Mexican restaurants in Manhattan, Maya, which earned a 2-star review from the NY Times. Having worked as its General Manager, he then moved to San Francisco to open the second Maya restaurant in the US, thus becoming the Director of Operations of both restaurants. In March of 2000, due to his persistent motivation and search for perfection, the distinguished restaurant group Sushi Samba recruited him to become their Director of Operations. Joining his brother once again in 2003, he became partner and Director of Operations of Modern Mexican Restaurants, where he successfully managed and operated Maya NY, Maya SF, Tamayo Denver, while Pampano NY, Zengo Denver, and Isla Las Vegas. During this period he also created and oversaw the Modern Mexican Restaurants corporate office.

In 2004 decided to open the first Mercadito in the East Village, with his younger brother Chef Patricio Sandoval, the brothers opened Mercadito Grove in the West Village in June 2005. Bolstered by the demand for Patricio’s modern interpretations of classic Mexican cuisine, Alfredo recognized the time was right to take the Mercadito concept to other regions of the country expanding into Chicago (2009) and Miami (2010).

Alfredo recently put a team of experts together to create Mercadito Hospitality, a hospitality consulting group which currently operated five nationally acclaimed restaurants. Mercadito Hospitality have grown by leaps and bounds thanks to Sandoval’s business acumen and unyielding vision. The success of the restaurants is a testament to lessons learned by an 11-year old boy who dreamed to be like his father.

Felipe Sandoval

Felipe Sandoval

Partner

Felipe Sandoval grew up surrounded by restaurants. His first job was at his father, Manuel’s, world-renowned Acapulco restaurant Madeiras in 1980. In 1989 Sandoval became General Manager where he oversaw operations for ten years. In addition during this time, he purchased, renovated, opened, and operated Ristorante Villa Fiore also in Acapulco. In 1999 he moved to San Francisco to open Maya Restaurant as a Managing Partner with his brother, Richard Sandoval. Maya flourished under his leadership, building a reputation as the best Mexican restaurant in the Bay Area after a three star review in the San Francisco Chronicle.

Sandoval was then named Chief Financial Officer of Modern Mexican Restaurants, which included Maya NY, Maya SF, and Tamayo Denver and helped open Pampano NY, Zengo Denver, and Isla Las Vegas - all receiving outstanding reviews in local and national media outlets. He left Modern Mexican Restaurants in 2006 to concentrate on Maya and the popular Mexico DF Restaurant which he opened in San Francisco in 2007.

Recently, Sandoval joined forces with brothers Alfredo and Patricio to open Mercadito Chicago, the first expansion of Mercadito Hospitality outside of New York City, and Mercadito Miami where he will supervise all financial operations.

The importance of a strong financial foundation is paramount to the success and longevity of any business. With Patricio’s talent, Alfredo’s drive and Felipe’s financial expertise, the Sandoval brothers are poised to create a lasting impact with Mercadito Hospitality.

Practically a gourmand from birth, Mercadito Chef and Partner, Patricio Sandoval almost seems genetically engineered for a culinary life. Born on June 16, 1974 in Acapulco, Mexico, Sandoval virtually grew up in the kitchen of his father Manuel Sandoval’s world class restaurant Madeiras. After moving to California to attend high school, Sandoval left for New York City to work with his older brother Richard, who also followed in the family’s culinary footsteps with his own restaurant, Maya. It was while working alongside Richard that Sandoval discovered his passion for cooking.

Although his brother was aware of his potential, Sandoval started on the “ground floor” of the restaurant business – eventually working his way up from an apprentice in 1998 to Sous Chef. After moving back to California in 1999 to help his Richard set up Maya in San Francisco and working as Sous Chef at Hawthorne Lane in 2000, Sandoval decided that it was time to seriously train as a chef.

Returning to New York City, he enrolled in The French Culinary Institute and further refined his skills while working with Peter Hoffman at the legendary Savoy in 2000. Upon graduating from The French Culinary Institute, Sandoval returned to the Savoy but was tapped by his brother Richard to act as a Consulting Chef for his latest restaurant, Pampano, in 2004. It was during this time that Sandoval began to consider opening his own restaurant.

Sandoval’s inspiration for Mercadito Restaurants drew from his experiences shopping with his mother in the markets of his native Mexico. The young Sandoval instinctively gravitated towards the small market stalls where local merchants sold native delicacies that fueled a day of bargaining. Never forgetting these delectable yet uncomplicated dishes, Sandoval strived to capture the flavor and energy of this cuisine. Operating four Mercadito restaurants, New York, Chicago, and Miami by the end of 2009, it is safe to say that Sandoval more than exceeded his goal. These restaurants are a fitting tribute to the rich culinary tradition that began with his father Manuel and lingers throughout the Sandoval family today.

Tippling Bros

Tippling Bros

Beverage Team

Cheers

Press Highlight

Cheers - May 15th, 2013

Tippling Bros is a beverage consultant entity founded by sommeliers and mixologists Paul Tanguay and Tad Carducci. With over forty years combined experience in the restaurant and beverage industry, they are accredited and certificated by such venerable institution such as the Wine and Spirits Education Trust, American Sommelier Association, the Court of Master Sommeliers, the Sake Education Council and the Beverage Alcohol Resource and have won numerous awards and have received national and international recognition for their wine lists, sake lists and cocktails.

Having run successful multi-unit and national restaurant groups, their experience is in developing profitable beverage programs with a commitment to education and a dedication to Alcohol Awareness, all the while, setting the standards for the future of the beverage industry.

www.tipplingbros.com

Natalie Levine

Natalie Levine

Director of Marketing and PR

Crain's

Press Highlight

Crain's - July 25th, 2013

The combination of aromas from the cooking of her Jewish grandmother and the foods of her native Mexico seduced Natalie Kalb into the kitchen at a very early age. At age 10 she was already spending long hours making tortillas, salsas, and baking cookies. Her interest in all aspects of food only grew stronger as the years passed, making her decision to pursue a degree in nutrition a very easy one. She entered Universidad Iberoamericana (Mexico) in 1995 and obtained a degree in Nutrition and Food Service in 2000.

Throughout her formative college years she dedicated her research to Mexican cuisines, which led her in 1998 to study Mexican Culinary Arts and expand her cooking skills. Simultaneously, she supervised the Mexican Arts Department and assisted the director of the Mexican Gastronomy Festival in Mexico City. During that same time, Kalb also worked at the prestigious event center Ambrosia, a large catering company, which expanded her experience in sales and event planning. In 2001 Kalb moved to New York City to take her education to the next level. She enrolled in New York University, where she graduated with a Master’s of Arts in Food Studies and Restaurant Management. Her commitment and work to this field led to awards from the American Institute of Food and Wine and the Samuel Eshborn Service award for extraordinary service.

Upon graduating from NYU, Kalb’s exploration propelled her into Slow Food USA, a non-profit organization, where she worked in the marketing, membership, and event planning department. After several valuable years in the non-profit world, she began her foray into the private sector by working with Chef Richard Sandoval, a renowned chef with over 20 restaurants worldwide. Kalb’s role as the Marketing Director amplified the business status and increasing revenue setting the company’s standards for future growth.

Her interest in all aspects of food went further when she received two scholarships from Les Dames D’Escoffier and Women Chefs and Restaurateurs to enroll in The Institute of Culinary Education’s Pastry and Baking Arts program.

In 2008, Kalb was recruited by Mercadito Hospitality to become the Director of Marketing and PR, where she supervises the marketing department at a national level.

In her free time you will find her running at the lake shore, or the streets of Chicago.

Katrina Michael

Katrina Michael

Director of Operations

Zagat Chicago

Press Highlight

Zagat Chicago - 2012 / 2013

Born and raised in Michigan, one of the oldest of seven children, Katrina was a natural leader and a hard worker very early on. The extension of taking care of others and managing a household made for an easy transition into the hospitality industry at age 15. While working and growing in the industry, Katrina pursued a double major in Public Relations and Broadcasting/Cinematic Arts at Central Michigan University.

After graduating, she headed to Chicago where she was able to combine her passion for creativity and brand management with her entrepreneurial spirit as promotions coordinator for a Chicago-based record label.

Anxious to use her skills to interact with and give back to the community in a different way, Katrina went to work for Mercy Memorial Hospital System. Creating media ads, community publications and organizing system wide events allowed Katrina to showcase her creative side while building a strong outreach program for the Hospital.

While she loved expanding her experience, she missed the energy of city life and the hospitality industry. Katrina transitioned back to Chicago joining Eat Well, Drink Better, Inc, restaurant group. While with the company she became Director of Operations, overseeing the day-to-day operations and marketing for a 10,000 sq ft restaurant, a 20,000 sq ft live music and a full-service event department.

Passionate to grow within Chicago’s hospitality scene, Katrina joined the Mercadito team in 2011, helping to open its newest restaurant, Tavernita. While managing, she quickly learned all aspects of the company, proving her ability to not only manage well, but implement effective training programs and procedures. Strong suited in operations and brand management, Katrina was quick to find a perfect fit as the Director of Development for Mercadito Hospitality.

Ivan Madera

Ivan Madera

Director of Operations, Chicago

Eater.com

Press Highlight

Eater.com - April 12th, 2012

Ivan Madera’s past is steeped in the hospitality industry. Born in Hawaii and raised in Key Biscayne, Florida, Madera grew up in the Sonesta Beach Resort with his father who is now the Executive Vice President, International of the Sonesta International Hotels Corporation. While majoring in hospitality management at Florida International University, Madera spent the summer of 1998 as an intern in casino management at the Sonesta Beach Resort in Oranjestad, Aruba. From 1999 to 2001, Madera acted in different capacities in both operations and management at the Sonesta Beach Resort in Key Biscayne, Florida, obtaining hands-on experience in guest and employee relations. After graduating, Madera went on to take part in the opening of the Ritz Carlton in Key Biscayne, Florida as a host/maitre d’. After that, Madera joined the Four Seasons Hotel, where, after a six month front office management training program, he was an assistant manager for two and half years in both Miami and Chicago.

Madera went on to hone his skills in the food service industry as a food and beverage manager for the Cantina Restaurant at the Ritz Carlton in Key Biscayne, Florida. There he worked to increase revenue from and popularity with local Floridians. During his tenure, Cantina became the highest revenue-generating restaurant in the hotel. Madera then went on to manage Cameo Miami and Dolce Ultra Lounge, one of the biggest nightclub venues in Miami Beach.

Madera’s most recent experience has been to turn Cuvee Ultra Lounge into the premiere spot in Chicago’s nightlife landscape. As the general manager, he has raised the bar of Chicago nightclub venues to an enviable level. Madera will now bring his extensive experience in the hospitality industry to Mercadito Hospitality as a general manager for the company’s latest concept being launched in Chicago in 2011. His goals are to help create a unique concept and raise the bar for the company while assisting in its expansion. Madera demands only superior guest service and the closest attention to detail from his employees, as he believes a venue is only as strong as its team. When he’s not busy setting the standard of nightlife entertainment, Madera enjoys dining out, traveling, and spending time with friends and family.

Vincent Celano

Vincent Celano

Celano Design Studio

Form

Press Highlight

Form - September 9th, 2013

Vincent Celano, founder and principal of New York City-based Celano Design Studio, has made his name in hospitality design and architecture, working with brands like The One Group, Mercadito, and W Hotels. Born in Toronto and raised in New York City, Celano discovered his passion for design and architecture from the neighborhoods, culture, and people around him. After graduating from New York’s Pratt Institute with a degree in architecture, Celano went on to work for some of the most sought-after firms in the industry. In 2013, he launched Celano Design Studio to service his extensive roster of internationally acclaimed hotels, nightclubs, and restaurants in design, architecture, and branding.

Contemporary urban artist, Erni Vales may be best known for his development of the 3D graffiti style that has influenced thousands worldwide, however, Vales, has a portfolio reaching far beyond what might be expected from a graffiti artist.

It was at the High School of Art and Design where Vales was introduced to graffiti and the emerging culture of hip hop. Painting at a feverish pace on both subway cars and canvas, the artist soon started showing at Graffiti Productions Inc., one of the first galleries to feature authentic graffiti works by the legends of the era, becoming the solid foundation to a spellbinding career.

Vales honed his talent through an array of mediums including a foray in hand painted clothing which led Vales to create large murals in nightclubs of NYC. Vales executed murals in Limelight, The Tunnel, and Gil and Erni's Rock and Roll Bar to name a few out of more than 500 spaces.

In 1995, hungry for more, Vales returned to NYC and teamed up with the then emerging photographer, David LaChapelle to work on pieces including portraits for Madonna, Elton John, Mariah Carey, and L'il Kim. The portrait of L'il Kim (cover of Interview Magazine in 1998) was chosen as one of the 50 greatest portraits of all time by Rolling Stone Magazine in 2004. Many of these works can be seen in the book Hotel LaChapelle.

In 2008, Vales was commissioned by Google to design a 5-story mural in their NYC office, wrapping around their ever popular stairwell. Next, Vales introduced EVL Productions (Erni Vales, LTD.), a line of creative limited merchandise based on his artwork and career. He also re-teamed with David LaChapelle on another fantastic project creating sets for an Ed Hardy ad campaign and a Rolling Stone cover shoot with Lady Gaga.

Vales’ most recent collaboration with Mercadito Hospitality has been creating large scale murals covering the walls of Mercadito Chicago, Miami, Tavernita and Barcito. Vales says “My new relationship with Mercadito is a perfect thing at a perfect time, I see amazing potential in the growth of creativity beyond the food and the food experience and I can’t wait to begin building a new avenue for the restaurants and hopefully help solidify an already strong and great team.”

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