TAMPA, Fla. (June 22, 2022) – The Karol Hotel, the first Tribute Portfolio hotel in Pinellas County, Florida, recently announced the appointment of Thomas Parker as Executive Chef. Chef Thomas will direct daily culinary operations at the hotel’s signature K Club Bar & Bistro and Vantage Rooftop Bar, while overseeing food and beverage offerings for meetings, corporate events, local catering functions and special occasions in the hotel’s 7,340 square feet of event space. Marketed by Tampa-based Mainsail Lodging & Development, The Karol Hotel focuses on delivering carefree comfort combined with intuitive design.

“Thomas has been honing his craft in kitchens across Ohio since he was 15 years old,” said Adam Duffey, General Manager at The Karol Hotel. “We’re thrilled to bring his passion and expertise to the Sunshine State and look forward to sharing with guests the creative culinary vision he’s bringing to The Karol.”

Chef Thomas was most recently Executive Chef of the Doubletree by Hilton Hotel in Canton, Ohio, the partner hotel of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Prior to that, he was Chef de Cuisine of the Hilton Hotel in downtown Cleveland, and also held chef positions with Landmark Restaurant and Metropolitan at the 9, both based in Ohio.  Chef Thomas is a native of Warren, Ohio.

Chef Thomas will be adding his own touch to current menus at The Karol, incorporating a few Italian favorites to the New American cuisine inspired by the flavors of the Florida coast. Coming this summer, K Club Bar & Bistro will feature new dinner options such as an Espresso Crusted Filet and Apple Brined Pork Chop, as well as local snapper and grouper dishes. Short Rib & Sausage Bolognese, Shrimp & Mussel Arabiatta and even a vegan Spaghetti & Meatballs will also grace the new menu. Guests will want to save room for the new dessert menu with highlights including Peanut Butter & Jelly Bread Pudding, “Froot Loop” Cereal Cake, and Chocolate 4 Ways. The popular Vantage Rooftop Bar also has a sophisticated new menu highlighted by Filet Tartare, Oysters on the Half Shell, Smoked Fish Dip and the Vantage Charcuterie Board, which is chef-selected daily. 

The signature K Club Bar & Bistro offers a menu inspired by the fresh flavors of the Florida and travels of hotel owners Fred and Karol Bullard, two of Feather Sound’s – and Florida’s – most notable duos, known for living lives full of adventure, business, philanthropy, family, love and dinners with presidents. The onsite restaurant is a contemporary blend of Florida artisan vernacular and chic touches in a quiet comfortable setting that transitions gracefully from morning coffee to sophisticated evening cuisine. An iconic wine display takes center stage in the main dining room, bookended by cozy banquettes and featured art. Guests also have the option to dine alfresco overlooking the pool and pond. In the downstairs lobby adjacent the restaurant, the K Club Bar welcomes guests in a relaxed, leather-trimmed retreat, perfect for sharing stories and sipping fine spirits. Perched high in the sky with elevated cocktails, Vantage Rooftop Bar is the only climate-controlled rooftop bar in the area, where guests can enjoy light bites 12 stories high while taking in stunning views of downtown Tampa and beyond.

The Karol Hotel is named for and inspired by Karol Kelly Bullard, “Miss Karol K,” wife of Fred Bullard, CEO of The Bullard Group, developer and owner of the property. The boutique hotel features 123 guest rooms and suites; the Vantage Rooftop Bar overlooking Tampa Bay; the signature K Club Bar & Bistro; a combined 7,340 square feet of event space, including a ballroom and executive conference rooms; and an outside pool and fitness center. A towering tribute to Miss Karol K, the hotel’s design and décor are a stylish reflection of her remarkable life – from her early days as Miss Florida and Florida’s first “weather woman” to her current role as community activist and philanthropist.

The Karol Hotel is located just 12 minutes from St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport (PIE), and 20 minutes from Tampa International Airport (TPA). For reservations and more information on The Karol Hotel, visit TheKarolHotel.com.