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 April 2019...

Guest Service: A Culture of YES

In a recent global consumers report, 97% of the participants said that customer service is a major factor in their loyalty to a brand, and 76% said they view customer service as the true test of how much a company values them. And since there is no industry more reliant on customer satisfaction than the hotel industry, managers must be unrelenting in their determination to hire, train and empower the very best people, and to create a culture of exceptional customer service within their organization. Of course, this begins with hiring the right people. There are people who are naturally service-oriented; people who are warm, empathetic, enthusiastic, pleasant, thoughtful and optimistic; people who take pride in their ability to solve problems for the hotel guests they are serving. Then, those same employees must be empowered to solve problems using their own judgment, without having to track down a manager to do it. This is how seamless problem solving and conflict resolution are achieved in guest service. This willingness to empower employees is part of creating a Culture of Yes within an organization.  The goal is to create an environment in which everyone is striving to say “Yes”, rather than figuring out ways to say, “No”. It is essential that this attitude be instilled in all frontline, customer-facing, employees. Finally, in order to ensure that the hotel can generate a consistent level of performance across a wide variety of situations, management must also put in place well-defined systems and standards, and then educate their employees about them. Every employee must be aware of and responsible for every standard that applies in their department. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.