Johanna Hehakaja – Director of Food & Beverage at The Dharmawangsa...

Johanna Hehakaja – Director of Food & Beverage at The Dharmawangsa Jakarta

Johanna Hehakaja

E: What are your responsibilities as the director of food and beverage at The Dharmawangsa Jakarta?

A: I lead the development of our dining experiences and execution of a dynamic F&B programme aligned with our hotel’s brand identity. This involves conceptualising innovative dining concepts, collaborating closely with the executive chef on menu creation, and orchestrating special events to enhance guest experiences, as well as managing our staff and budget. In essence, my role ensures smooth F&B operations to meet guest satisfaction and profitability targets.

E: What made you decide to pursue a career in hospitality?

A: There is never a dull day in this industry, the constant dynamism and creativity demanded in hospitality attracted me. Each day presents new challenges, requiring energy and leadership to drive a dynamic team forward.

E: What do you think is the most important thing that someone in your position need to have?

A: Character is paramount. While technical skills and experience are important, it’s someone’s character that truly sets them apart. As an Indonesian director of F&B at The Dharmawangsa Jakarta, I take immense pride in our rich cultural heritage and resources. I strive to infuse elements of Indonesian culture into our F&B offerings, celebrating our traditions, flavours and culinary heritage. This not only distinguishes us from competitors but also resonates with our guests, creating memorable experiences that showcase the essence of Indonesian hospitality.

E: Following the previous question, what do you think is the biggest challenge in your line of work?

A: Finding passionate and dedicated team members is a constant challenge. It’s not just a matter of filling positions but recruiting team members who are genuinely enthusiastic and proud of their work. Creating a culture of passion and dedication in the team involves supporting and encouraging them regularly. This means offering chances for learning and growth, appreciating and rewarding their hard work, and making sure everyone feels valued, respected and empowered to do their best.

E: Can you share us any exciting project or development at the hotel in the near future?

A: We’re thrilled to unveil a captivating new venture known as the Treasure Series, set to occur quarterly at The Dharmawangsa Jakarta. This series is designed to spotlight Indonesia’s vibrant cultural tapestry and diverse regions, including Sigi. Soon, in May 2024, we’ll be launching the Treasures of Sigi event, where the executive chef, marketing communication manager and I embarked on a culinary journey to Sigi, Central Sulawesi. We immersed ourselves in the local culture, discovering authentic dishes and cooking techniques unique to the region. Upon our return, we’ll bring back these culinary treasures to the hotel for a special dining event, allowing guests to experience the flavours and stories of Sigi firsthand. Additionally, we’ve captured this journey in a captivating documentary, offering guests a behind-the-scene look at the culinary exploration of Sigi.  

Exquisite Taste Volume 43

The Dharmawangsa Jakarta

Jalan Brawijaya Raya

Jakarta 12160, Indonesia

T: (+62) 217258181



IG: @thedharmawangsa