OUR TEAM OF EVENT SPECIALISTS

The members of our talented team of event experts at The Manor have dedicated their careers to creating truly memorable events. Each have been carefully chosen to be a part of our Manor family because of their proven prowess to deliver extraordinary experiences for our guests. Operating together as a team, they attend to every detail, from planning to the party’s end, ensuring that your celebration is a success. When you host an event at The Manor, we can confidently assert that you enjoy access to one of the most experienced groups of event professionals in the industry.

ELENA SMIRNOVA, GENERAL MANAGER

A hospitality expert who has served in nearly every facet of the event production process, General Manager Elena Smirnova is one of the driving forces behind The Manor’s success. In her role as general manager, Ms. Smirnova oversees the day-to-day operations of our expansive 20-acre property and private mansion, including management of The Manor’s executive team and more than 200 employees.

With a background in exclusive private events as well as high-end fine dining, her combined experience with both event management and the discerning standards of the luxury gastronomy world make her a perfect fit for meeting The Manor’s benchmarks of excellence and customer service. Her talent for fulfilling the wishes of our clients and guests, while also attending to the needs of our staff, has set her apart in the industry. Knowing every aspect of the business from the inside-out has given her a unique perspective on optimizing the event environment and overall experience for all those who walk through our doors.

Ms. Smirnova holds advanced degrees from Kaliningrad University and Cornell hospitality management, putting her knowledge base into practice, leveraging her perfectionism for a purpose – to ensure that every event hosted at The Manor is an experience of a lifetime.

LARRY GOLDFARB, DIRECTOR OF CATERING

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ROLF W. SHICK, CATERING SALES MANAGER

As a seasoned industry veteran, Catering Sales Manager Rolf Shick has successfully helped countless newly-engaged couples to arrange their dream weddings and receptions. An ever-consistent presence with sage advice built upon experience, Mr. Shick’s affable, reassuring demeanor is a welcome comfort for those seeking to host an event at The Manor. Having worked to help the full gamut of clients from professionals at Fortune 500 companies to the mom and dad looking to host a Sweet 16 party for their daughter, he has equally attended to each with great care and his trademark attention to detail.

With over 40 years of experience, Mr. Shick truly knows the business and The Manor itself from the ground-up. Having worked as a server, captain, and maître d’ in his youth at The Manor, he is uniquely well-equipped to offer a complete insight on events and the guest-level experience. Informing his insights on the fiscal facets of event production, Mr. Shick holds business degrees in marketing and finance from Rutgers University, with an additional minor in economics.

Proving his passion for helping people and his talent for all aspects of event management, Mr. Shick quickly grew within the business to his current position. He has undeniably dedicated his career to The Manor. And when the time came to be a groom himself, he and his wife-to-be chose The Manor for their own wedding as well. Mr. Shick continues to ensure a high standard of service for those wishing to make special memories with us, and regularly receives glowing feedback from the clients and guests whom he has helped along the way.

ROMAN BIENKIEWICZ, CATERING SALES MANAGER

With several decades of service to The Manor, Catering Sales Manager Roman Bienkiewicz has worked with generations of families to coordinate special celebrations at The Manor and make them truly memorable occasions.

With a delightful charm and serene sense of ease, our clients can be confident that Mr. Bienkiewicz will make the event planning process as enjoyable as it is successful. As yet another team member who truly loves what he does, Mr. Bienkiewicz can often be found–even on his days off–at The Manor to go above and beyond for his clients. Whether running events or planning out their logistics; working with clients on their ideal menu or collaborating with the staff to make sure all the details are delivered upon, Mr. Bienkiewicz always has his clients’ interests in mind.

His experience and enjoyment in events that embrace many diverse traditions and cultural practices shows in the appreciation from the many families for whom he has personally helped to make their dream events become a reality. Having traveled the world in his formative years, from Europe to the Mediterranean to the Middle East and beyond, he developed a deep interest in the many distinctive characteristics and rituals of the people of the world. His experiences have also earned him fluency in multiple languages. With an MBA in Internal Business, his education further aligns with his avocation. Mr. Bienkiewicz exemplifies The Manor’s core belief in the importance of experience and a dedication to service to our guests.

VICTORIA BLAIR, EVENT MANAGER

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An committed hospitality professional, Event Manager Victoria Blair is driven by her love of helping to make every event a care-free experience for our wedding couples, social event hosts, and corporate clients. She is well-versed in the operations management of the catering and events industry, with a keen eye for detail to ensure the flawless implementation and smooth execution of event plans and schedules. Overseeing our day-of service staff, she is an ever-present asset who orchestrates each event’s execution, ensuring that our standards are consistently upheld and that every guest’s need is attended to with the utmost care.

PATRICIA FERENCE, CATERING ADMINISTRATOR

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Most often our clients’ first point of contact, Catering Administrator Patricia Ference truly embodies the spirit of hospitality. Her always upbeat energy and friendly attitude sets the tone for the welcoming warmth of our team. Always looking for a way to help or go the extra mile, Ms. Ference tackles every task in earnest. Behind her unassuming nature is also a conscientious administrator with a background in managing the accounting services for several hospitality and beverage industry operations.

CULINARY LEADERSHIP

NICHOLAS PALLER, EXECUTIVE CHEF

Leading The Manor’s extensive culinary staff with great aplomb, Executive Chef Nicholas Paller brings a lifetime of experience in executing high-level events with food-focused finesse. His extensive background guiding the culinary operations in some of the northeast’s most respected venues have honed his well-proven talents for developing enticing menus that impress.

Whether at Marriott Hotels International or highly-rated restaurants in New Jersey, Chef Paller has consistently delivered quality experiences for discerning clientele. His stints at Landmark Hospitality venues, including Liberty House and Celebrate at Snug Harbor, have further solidified his reputation for meticulously overseeing large-scale events that elevate epicurean experiences.

Chef Paller has also served as the executive chef for BMW of North America, as well as one of Pennsylvania’s premier wedding venues, the Hotel Du Village. While serious about his craft, Chef Paller none-the-less brings a welcome spirit of camaraderie to the kitchen, having built a solid team of culinary professionals who all enjoy the daily challenge of continuing to expand upon The Manor’s long-held reputation for exquisite experiences through fabulous food.

NICOLA PETULLO, EXECUTIVE PASTRY CHEF

Having honed his craft for well-over four decades at The Manor, Pastry Chef Nicola Petullo has worked alongside some of the most talented industry professionals and notable chefs. As a young baker, under the tutelage of master pastry artist and chef, Alfred Mayer, Chef Petullo quickly proved his touch and talent for producing quality baked goods and delicious decorative confections. Sometimes staying until long after his shift to assist Chef Mayer, he was committed to honing his craft, assisting with pulled sugar art and chocolate sculpting — in addition to apprenticing at all the tricks of his trade for baking fine desserts and breads.

Chef Petullo also took on the highly-skilled task of creating our custom wedding cakes for our brides and grooms in our own in-house bakery. Though the plan was to continue to tutor Nicki in cake design in his now expanded role, he soon proved to have grown beyond the need for instruction, creating elegant cakes of his own accord. To this day, our couples have the peace of mind knowing that there’s a steady, skilled, and well-trained hand who pipes out the elaborate decorations on their cakes; a sweet science that he has been refining for over 45 years with us.

Known amongst our staff as “Nicki”, he is yet another beloved member our Manor family. He bakes into every event a true European sense of taste and a pure passion for the culinary experience that springs from his birthplace in Aquilonia, Campania, Italy. In employee after employee, we so often find that giving them an opportunity to grow within in the business has been doubly repaid in their loyalty, service to our customers, and in commitment to developing the quality for which we continually strive. Our thanks to Nicki for his years of talented service, and the innumerable scrumptious desserts across the decades that we’ve personally “taste tested” to confirm just how good he can bake.

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