Antoinette “Toni” Knorr, who has served as the general manager of The St. Regis Hotel & Residences in San Francisco since 2007, has officially retired after a 40-year career.
Knorr became the general manager of the St. Regis in San Francisco shortly after the hotel opened, and previously served as the general manager of W San Francisco.
Knorr received her master’s degree from Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration, the Wharton Business School at the University of Pennsylvania and La Varenne, Ecole de Cuisine in Paris. After graduating, she kick-started her career as a catering manager for Hyatt Regency hotels, later moving on to the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C. in 1989, where she served her first hotel manager position.
Three years later, she made her first relocation to San Francisco to become the general manager of the Park Hyatt. She then moved to New York City to work in general management at the Grand Hyatt New York on 42nd Street. At this post, she also managed the hotel’s retail leases for Hyatt Equities.
Starting in 2001, Knorr split her time between New York and San Francisco when she joined Millennium Partners as an asset manager and director of hotel operations for a luxury portfolio that included the Four Seasons San Francisco and Ritz-Carlton hotels in Washington, D.C., Boston and Georgetown. She also performed some pioneering work on the then-emerging concept of integrating hotel operations, services and amenities with mixed-use property components, incorporating both residential and retail spaces.
Along with her many management roles, she has held other leadership positions such as board chair and executive committee member of the San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau, chair of the San Francisco Tourism Improvement District and Moscone Expansion District and president of the Hotel Council of San Francisco. She has also belonged to memberships with the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art Council since 1997, the International Women’s Forum since 2009 and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation since 2005.
Knorr’s has been recognized as Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration Alumna of the Year and received the Hotel Council of San Francisco’s Peter Goldman Award for Outstanding Leadership, the San Francisco Business Times “Most Influential Women in Business” and “Forever Influential” awards and was appointed to the President’s Council of Cornell Women. She has also been a frequent guest lecturer at the Tisch Center for Hospitality at New York University and the University of San Francisco’s McClaren School of Business in addition to participating in many forums at her alma mater.
Former San Francisco Mayor Willie L. Brown, Jr., who was in office during the openings of both the W and The St. Regis, said in the release that Knorr is “one of those extremely capable, highly influential people who never promote themselves but who play pivotal roles in a city’s life.”
Now retired, Knorr plans to relocate to Charleston, South Carolina to be closer to her family.