Cloudland At McLemore Resort Announces Dustin Willett As Executive Chef

  • Tuesday, March 12, 2024
Executive Chef Dustin Willett
Executive Chef Dustin Willett
Cloudland at McLemore Resort – the marquee Curio Collection by Hilton resort perched atop Lookout Mountain – introduces Daniel Willett as its new executive chef.

Mr. Willett oversees Cloudland’s three restaurants - Croft, Auld Alliance and the Sky Bar - and works with each restaurant chef on the menus that honor the French and Scottish themes of the venues. The menus also specialize in Southern influences based on the resort’s location. In addition, Mr. Willett will spearhead the culinary needs for Cloudland’s events, such as its Easter Egg Hunt later this month, the Kentucky Derby and brunches on Mother’s and Father’s Days, and catering services.

Possessing more than 20 years of experience in the culinary and hospitality industries, Mr.
Willett was most recently the executive chef at the Brown Hotel in Louisville, Ky. Prior to his nearly seven years at The Brown Hotel, Mr. Willett was the chef de cuisine at the English Grill in the Brown Hotel, and the executive chef of the Rivue Restaurant at the Galt House Hotel and Suites in Louisville.

Mr. Willett also spent part of his professional career in Washington D.C. as the executive sous chef at the Four Seasons Hotel and Resorts and at the Palomar Hotel. A graduate of the Culinard Culinary School in Birmingham, Mr. Willett started his professional career in New Orleans as a line cook before becoming the sous chef at the Cobalt in the Hotel Monaco in 2003. Three years later, he became the sous chef at the 7 On Fulton in New Orleans.

“Dustin boasts an incredible resume and credentials in the luxury hotel and hospitality industries that make him an ideal fit for our new resort,” says Mike Burton, general manager at Cloudland. “We are extremely delighted to have Dustin join our team, and know the guests will thoroughly enjoy his creative menu items.”

“As the opening chef at Cloudland, I’m excited to be presented with this opportunity to showcase my culinary expertise,” said Mr. Willett, who grew up nearly two hours from the resort. “The prospect of overseeing operations across multiple restaurants, each with its distinct concept, and the club aspect, is an enticing challenge that I am honored to be a part of. The beauty of the area is so inspiring, and I’m eager to share that through memorable dining experiences for our guests.”

Officials said, "Situated 30 minutes from Chattanooga and less than two hours from the Atlanta metro area, Cloudland officially opened on Leap Day - Feb. 29. Considered the Southeast’s most anticipated hotel opening, the Curio Collection by Hilton property offers 245 guest rooms, including 19 suites and 20,000 square feet of state-of-the-art meeting and event space.

"In addition to the lodging and event space, guests can enjoy a range of amenities, including three restaurants, a cliff-edge infinity pool and sky bar, access to two exceptional golf courses (The Highlands Course and The Cairn short course) and a full-service spa, along with endless opportunities to explore Lookout Mountain and surrounding areas. A third golf course, The Keep, is currently under construction and is set to open later in 2024.

"Aside from its proximity to regional hubs and major airports, Cloudland’s unique location highlights the unspoiled simplicity of nature that spans as far as the eye can see. Access to the outdoors, whether within the gates of the resort or beyond, is endless, with scenic hikes, rock climbing, road cycling, hang gliding and more just minutes from Cloudland."

The resort recently hired Mike Burton as its general manager. Mr. Burton came to Cloudland from The Westin Jackson, where he was the general manager at the Mississippi hotel for six years. His professional career also includes stints in Chicago, Dallas, San Antonio, Birmingham and the Cape Cod region of Massachusetts.

To book reservations at Cloudland at McLemore or for more information, visit www.staycloudland.com or call 888-391-1148.
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