Philippe Perraudeau, Executive Chef, Golf de l'Ocean and Atlantic Palace Resort.
I understand your culinary career started with the Hilton Group?
My career with Hilton started on my first trip to Quebec in 1978. I thought that integrating into a group with an international scope could give me the opportunity to travel and experience different culinary cultures. I wanted to learn the world of hotels and Hilton gave me the opportunity for training in administrative management, which also included human resource management. It was a good education for me.
Tell us about the restaurants that you owned in France and your inspiration behind them.
I left Canada in 1981 and returned to France to open my own restaurant. The first restaurant that I owned was Le Mogador at St. Gaudens, near Toulouse in the southwest of France. I was 30 years old at the time and fell in love with the place. It enabled me to prepare and cook my own dishes using my talents and have some freedom of expression through my plates.
The second restaurant came to fruition when I turned 35. The restaurant, Le Flash at Cap d'Agde, was on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea near Montpellier. I wanted to focus on seafood as our primary cuisine, but it proved to be a difficult restaurant to develop due to the seasonal nature of the location.
When did you move to Agadir? What steered that move for you?
When I left the Hilton in Turkey, I was looking for new horizons again and had a desire to discover something new. I went to Mexico to experience the taste of South American gastronomy after accepting an offer as the Corporate Executive Chef in charge of the kitchens of two resorts in Cabo San Lucas, The Villa Del Palmar, and The Villa La Estancia in Baja California, Mexico.
After several years, we decided to leave Mexico as my children were going to start school. Shortly after we decided to move, I was fortunate to receive a call from Morocco and was offered a position in Agadir at the Atlantic Palace Resort. Morocco was a different culture and a country with which I was not familiar, but I had always been intrigued by Morocco and had a strong desire to discover its delicious cuisine.
How long have you been working with the Royal family and how did this come about?
After I had started working at the Atlantic Palace Resort in Agadir, I learned that it was owned by a member of the Royal Family, which was an additional challenge but also an opportunity to work in a new environment. Golf de l'Ocean in Agadir, which had the same owner, opened in late 2009, and I was given the responsibility for the kitchen in the Clubhouse.
You have a significant responsibility to prepare the banquets and cuisine for the Hassan ll Trophy event, as well as for the Royal Family and their guests. Tell us about that experience and what it means for you as a chef.
The Hassan II Trophy was a big responsibility for me as Chef. It is easily the largest showcase of golf in the country, with nearly 1,000 meals to serve on two golf courses each day, in addition to the activity at the hotel. I was also in charge of preparing meals for members of the Royal Family and managing my other duties simultaneously. In addition, we paid particular attention to the members of the media, players and their guests, and spectators.
Golf du Palais Royal, Agadir, Morocco