Teddy Miller, General Manager
Teddy grew up on Hawaii Island and then made a move to Las Vegas where he landed his first job – a server at The Olive Garden – in the restaurant and hospitality industry. Teddy eventually made his way back home, working as General Manager at Huli Sues restaurant in Waimea and then as Restaurant Manager for Allen’s Table, also in Waimea.
After a short stint as a Certified Sales Representative/Territorial Manager for Anhueser Busch, Teddy concluded his heart was in the hospitality industry and found just the right spot at Lava Lava Beach Club.
At Lava Lava Beach Club, Teddy, who believes the heart of hospitality is the “Aloha Spirit”, extends his aloha with a warm welcome and a genuine smile. When it’s pau hana (after work) time Teddy enjoys spending time with his wife Mikilani and son, Jonah. Most often you’ll find him in the kitchen doing cook-off “competitions” with Mikilani or playing volleyball on the beach with son Jonah.
Deano Zappia was born and raised in sunny Southern California, then decided to continue his career in Las Vegas, opening the Hard Rock Café and Casino as the Bell Captain, over his 12 year span, he managed to work himself into the position of Director of Hotel Operations.
After that, Deano took his talents to a few other Las Vegas establishments, positions include Food and Beverage Manager at the Wynn Resort, and Manager at Drai’s Nightclub, Ultra Lounge & Restaurant.
Over the years Deano also embraced his inner entrepreneur by starting a handful of his own businesses in the Las Vegas area. After meeting his beautiful wife and Hilo native, Jessica, they decided to up and move to the Island of Hawaii in 2016. Deano brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our team.
Nick was born and raised just outside of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He grew up in a small business family and learned most of what he knows about business today from his grandfather. Watching his mother and father working in the family foundry business set a great example for his future work habits. Nick started his first business at 17 while a senior in high school, House of Birkenstock.
Seven years later Nick visited Fiji and was totally taken by island life in the Pacific. Just three months later he returned to Fiji to manage the island resort he visited, Turtle Island. Nick spent six years in Fiji and also spent some time in Western Samoa.
Continuing his reprieve from the 22 winters he spent in Wisconsin, Nick spent a few years in San Clemente, California bartending and managing restaurants. Nick was with Wind And Sea restaurant who transferred him here to manage at Kona Inn and Kona Canoe Club. He then moved on to Tommy Bahama’s prior to joining LLBC.
Nick shares his love for his adopted forever home of the Big Island with his wife, Eva. They were married here in 2013 and visited here on their very first vacation in 2011. They love to explore the island and celebrate Aloha with their ever growing Ohana!
Kim grew up in a small-town North of Chicago and traveled to Hawaii numerous times thanks to her mother’s love of the islands (and travel benefits with her job at United Airlines). She made a permanent move to Maui in 1994 where she lived for for 12 years. There, she gained experience in wedding coordinating, event planning and mixology. She landed a prestigious opportunity as the Lead Bartender for the Maui Film Festival that hosted premiere food & drink events for the stars & elite! She ended up with Tommy Bahama and was quickly promoted to a manager. This gave her an opportunity to relocate to Hawaii Island in 2006. After 16 years in the corporate world, Kim decided it was time to truly “Relax” and joined the LLBC team in June of 2017.
When Kim isn’t getting sand between her toes, she is enjoying all that Hawaii life has to offer- spending time at the beach, hiking, exploring, gardening and travel. She makes frequent visits to Maui to visit her son and lifelong friends. Her favorite spot to spend time is at her historic plantation home in North Kohala that she shares with her partner. Hosting family and friends for an abundant feast and inspired cocktails is one of her favorite past times!
Beth started cooking at the early age of 13 and by 18 was already a sous chef at an elegant French restaurant. Add to that experience, a stint with the United States Marine Corps, an executive chef position or two and even General Manager of a restaurant and you have a well rounded Culinary Professional.
Chef Beth, who recently moved to the Big Island with her partner, wisely takes a moment each day before work to gaze out at the beauty we are all fortunate to experience while dining and working at Lava Lava Beach Club. In her free time, Beth is a certified master gardener and enjoys raising edible flowers.
Eric Ramos, Sous Chef
Eric Ramos was born in Philippines and came to Hawaii in 1989. After working at numerous restaurants and hotels, he came to LLBC and found his home. Starting off as a line cook, supervisor and now sous chef, Eric has a unique understanding of the high volume production that comes from the kitchen.
He particularly enjoys creating many of the nightly seafood specials. His grandfather taught him to cook with love and if you ask anyone who orders his “Hook Line and Sinker” you will understand how the passion comes thru.
Cottage and Special Events
Family, food, and adventure, these are my passions. My love for delicious food was inspired by my parents. My father prepared the most amazing island cuisine with me by his side. My mother who is from New Orleans gave our home a Cajun flair. My passion for cooking came at a young age. Today I enjoy cooking for my family and friends. Although I was born and raised in South Carolina, my Hawaii roots were planted by my father who is an Oahu native.
Each time I visited the islands it became clearer and clearer that I would make Hawaii home. I moved to Hawaii Island in January 2014 and joined Paradise Gourmet Catering shortly after. In my free time, my husband Eric, my beautiful daughter Bailey, our two dogs and I love exploring every inch of our incredible island.
Our Leadership Team
Nick hails from Erie, Pennsylvania and has been a lifer in the hospitality industry. He started his career at Jr’s On The Bay in Erie, then bounced around the Great Lakes region with the popular steakhouse concept, Texas Roadhouse.
Nick moved to Hawaii in 2006 and managed the popular Waikiki restaurants Tikis Grill and Bar and The Cheesecake Factory. Nick moved to the Big Island in 2010 with Tommy Bahamas and fell in love with the island! He enjoys time with his wife Venus and his kids in his off time and finds the waters of the big island as a necessary balance to a stressful week.
After successfully opening Lava Lava Beach Club, Nick now oversees the operations of not only Lava Lava Beach Club but also Huggo’s, On The Rocks, Paradise Gourmet Catering and Grass Shack Parties.
Originally from the San Francisco Bay area, Chef Ken brings nearly thirty-five years of experience to Lava Lava Beach Club. Born and raised in wine country, Chef Ken worked in Napa Valley for most of his career. He also took five years and explored the cuisine of the Caribbean, gathering new ideas of parallel tropical latitude as culinary inspirations.
Chef Ken works directly with the Chef de Cuisine and sous chefs to create our menu items as well as work with our vendors to ensure our family of restaurants get the best possible products from local farmers and fishermen.