Paris hotels' rising chefs.
A slew of luxury hotels are opening in Paris during the next few months—but who will head their kitchens? Instead of high-profile heavyweights, the trend is toward promising unknowns. David Gutman, a 30-year-old with a stint at the Hôtel de Crillon on his résumé, is already in charge at the Metropolitan, which opened this past spring. Slated to receive its first guests early in 2010, the Royal Monceau has signed Laurent André, a young protégé of Alain Ducasse. And Philippe Labbé, who quietly scored two Michelin stars for Chèvre d’Or, his discreet perch in the village of Eze, has just relocated to the Paris Shangri-La, also opening early next year. Meanwhile, the new Crowne Plaza on Avenue Marceau is keeping everyone guessing: Rumors were swirling that three-star chef Pierre Gagnaire was all set to move in, though knowledgeable sources deny it.