WHY IT RATES: This new position will enhance MSC’s culinary offerings and dining experiences. —Janeen Christoff, TravelPulse Senior Writer
MSC Cruises announced that Jacques Van Staden has joined its global team as Vice President, Food & Beverage, reporting to Andrea Gangale, SVP Product Development and Guest Experience. In this role, based at the Company’s global headquarters in Geneva, Van Staden will lead all Food & Beverage activities for MSC Cruises worldwide.
“MSC Cruises is committed to delivering best-in-class culinary experiences and providing our guests the opportunity to discover new cultures and tastes through the dining we offer onboard,” said Gianni Onorato, MSC Cruises Chief Executive Officer. “Jacques is well-known for his innovative and creative dining concepts and we couldn’t be more excited to welcome him to the MSC Cruises family as we strive to continue to elevate our culinary offerings across our fleet.”
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Van Staden joins MSC Cruises as a hospitality expert with more than 28 years of experience across fine dining establishments and casual restaurants, hotel and cruise, including high-profile culinary establishments in the U.S. Most recently, Van Staden was president and CEO of the Miami-based JVS Culinary Group, providing visionary creative F&B consulting services for a wide-range of hospitality entities. Van Staden is also the founder of 2941 Street Food, an award-winning modern fast-casual Mediterranean concept with five locations in Detroit, Michigan.
Prior to JVS Culinary Group, Van Staden served as Vice President of Food & Beverage and Master Chef for Celebrity Cruises. In this position, he was directly responsible for transforming Celebrity Cruises’ culinary footprint, including introducing an entirely new array of dining and beverage experiences onboard Celebrity’s Solstice class of ships.
“The dining experience is a critical element in MSC Cruises guest’s overall cruise vacation and our guests are looking for gourmet culinary offerings across a wide range of cuisines,” said Ken Muskat, EVP and Chief Operating Officer, MSC Cruises USA. “Jacques, with his passion for creating fresh and authentic cuisine from around the world and impressive history of working with top establishments across the US, is the perfect addition to our team as we continue to grow our presence in North America and increase the number of North American guests sailing on our ships worldwide.”
“MSC Cruises delivers a true culinary journey with an array of international cuisine and an elegant dining experience,” said Van Staden. “I’m honored to be part of such a distinguished company and, together as one team, our mission is to further enhance our culinary canvas with innovative creations in the pursuit of not only exceeding expectations but crafting memorable dining experiences worthy of all the senses.”
Van Staden’s extensive experience also includes Sous and Executive Chef positions at a number of restaurants across the U.S., including the late, legendary three-star Michelin chef Jean-Louis Palladin’s restaurant at the Watergate Hotel; three-star Michelin chef Gray Kunz’s restaurant Lespinasse in Washington, DC; the well-known two-star Michelin restaurant Citronelle, featuring California French cuisine in Washington, DC; the chic London Club in the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas; and Michelin-star award-winning restaurants Andre’s & Alize in Las Vegas.
SOURCE: MSC Cruises press release.