Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Gallagher

Cornelius Gallagher

Associate Vice President, Food & Beverage Operations, Celebrity Cruises

Fortunate enough to have discovered his passion at a young age and after more than two decades in New York City’s cutting-edge and highly respected culinary arena, Cornelius Gallagher now oversees premium cruise brand Celebrity Cruises’ food and beverage operations. As Associate Vice President, Chef Gallagher leads more than 7,000 food and beverage professionals, and is responsible for all menu development and implementation as well as all aspects of culinary, service and beverage operations across Celebrity’s modern luxury 10 ships. Having recently served as Royal Caribbean International’s director of culinary operations for its 23-ship fleet, Gallagher led Royal’s culinary oversight and direction, including concept development and innovation. He was also instrumental in creating the line’s 18 distinct dining concepts for the new Quantum-class ships. Prior to his time in the cruise industry, Gallagher was Corporate Chef for the Bohlsen Group, where he oversaw six of the most well-known dining establishments on Long Island, NY. He also notably served as Executive Chef for Michelin-starred restaurant “Oceana” in Midtown Manhattan, where he earned a number of awards and accolades, including being named one of Food & Wine Magazine’s “Best New Chefs” and “Best Chef” by New York Magazine in 2003. Born in Bronx, NY on June 28, 1972, Chef Gallagher began cooking at the age of 12. At age 15, he entered a vocational cooking school while still in high school, which led to competing for and winning the “Top Young Culinarian” award at age 16. He continued to pursue his passion for cooking at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY. He then began his impressive career by working for some of the most renowned chefs, including David Bouley, Gray Kunz, Laurent Gras, Daniel Boulud and Ferran Adria, among others, where he learned everything from the importance of disciplined cooking techniques and a la minute cookery, to mastering spices and incorporating innovative Indian and Asian cuisines into his repertoire. Leading Celebrity's visionary approach to culinary experiences at sea, which has won the brand many awards, Chef Gallagher will introduce inspiring new restaurant, bar and interactive culinary concepts to the Celebrity fleet and develop world-class experiences for the recently announced Edge Class ships. His fresh approach to making guests feel excited about dining will challenge even the most experienced palates. He currently lives in South Florida with his wife and two children. Please visit www.celebritycruises.com for more information.

Mr. Gallagher can be contacted at 305-982-2959 or cgallagher@rccl.com

Coming up in February 2018...

Social Media: Engagement is Key

There are currently 2.3 billion active users of social media networks and savvy hotel operators have incorporated social media into their marketing mix. There are a few Goliath channels on which one must have a presence (Facebook & Twitter) but there are also several newer upstart channels (Instagram, Snapchat &WeChat, for example) that merit consideration. With its 1.86 billion users, Facebook is a dominant platform where operators can drive brand awareness, facilitate bookings, offer incentives and collect sought-after reviews. Twitter's 284 million users generate 500 million tweets per day, and operators can use its platform for lead generation, building loyalty, and guest interaction. Instagram was originally a small photo-sharing site but it has blown up into a massive photo and video channel. The site can be used to post photos of the hotel property, as well as creating Instagram Stories - personal videos that disappear from the channel after 24 hours. In this regard, Instagram and Snapchat are now in direct competition. WeChat is a Chinese company whose aim is to be the App for Everything - instant messaging, social media, shopping and payment services - all in a single platform. In addition to these channels, blogging continues to be a popular method to establish leadership, enhance reputations, and engage with customers in a direct and personal way. The key to effective use of all social media is to find out where your customers are and then, to the fullest extent possible, engage with them on a personal level. This engagement is what creates a personal connection and sustains brand loyalty. The February Hotel Business Review will explore these issues and examine how some hotels are successfully integrating social media into their operations.