We had the pleasure of connecting with the Chef Hotelier of the Year 2017, Philippe Bruneau. He shared the outcome of his victory and valuable pieces of advice for hoteliers interested in the platform. Currently, Chef Bruneau is the Executive Chef at the Jockey Club Hong Kong (JCHK), one of the oldest institutions of the metropolis city, renowned for being a world-class racing club. He oversees a massive operation, 8 outlets and hundreds of chefs, managing and hosting extraordinary dining experiences for the most distinguished guests. In addition to leading special projects with Michelin star chefs, world class wine makers and gourmet food suppliers, Chef Bruneau is also spearheading the opening of a brand-new JCHK clubhouse concept in 2020, which will no doubt widen the food and beverage offering to their exclusive members!
Winning The Hotelier Awards is a major milestone for my team and I. It has also kept me motivated to be a better version of myself amongst my employees, guests, suppliers and the industry. Additionally, the popularity of my restaurants and special events increased exponentially and customers became aware of the projects our team was up to. The Hotelier Awards was a recognition of the work, passion and commitment of my team.
My advice is to always go the extra mile for yourself and in what you are doing because someone will recognise the value you bring to the table. For example, to think outside-the-box and offer additional value to the guests, I considered the fact that consumers today care just as much about the meal experience as the meal itself. Therefore, during my time at W SuZhou, we organised novelty events like dinners in a shipping container or in a half-empty swimming pool to create an extraordinary dining experience to the guests. I made sure to highlight these accomplishments in my application.
I have supported and involved myself in my team’s growth to become future hoteliers of the culinary industry. To name a few initiatives implemented during my tenure as the culinary director at W SuZhou, the team was introduced to a cross-training program that would rotate the chefs between different stations of the kitchen in various restaurant venues. What the program achieved was to help the chefs adapt to new environments quickly and learn how to work in a fast-paced kitchen. Additionally, because social media is a great tool for sharing beautiful food images and stimulating the consumers, my team and I made it a priority to strengthen our food photography and videography to deliver the right message to our followers.
At the Hong Kong Jockey Club, I continue my mission to develop my team’s growth, implementing the cross-training program at a larger scale and introducing food photography classes to the team with the goal of publishing cookbooks.