InterContinental Toronto Centre’s executive chef achieves culinary mastery

Press Release

InterContinental Toronto Centre is proud to announce that their Executive Chef, Shawn Whalen, has received the prestigious Certified Master Chef (CMC) designation. Chef Whalen devoted endless hours of hard work, dedication and passion to reach this impressive achievement in his field.

The CMC professional designation under the Canadian Culinary Institute (CCI) is the highest attainable culinary designation in Canada. Developed by industry master chefs and faculty from the Canadian Centre of Culinary Arts and Science at Humber College, the CMC accreditation is uniquely challenging. All chefs must be extremely skilled and well-rounded in a multitude of areas within the culinary arts to receive the certification. Chef Whalen completed the program over a seven year time period, as he completed two years of theory, took a few years off to focus on his family and began his role at the InterContinental Toronto Centre. The final test was taken in August with five days of intense examinations in areas including: garde manger, baking, gastronomic with wine pairing and nutritional vegetarian lunch menu. Not only are the candidates tested on taste, composition and presentation, but also nutritional balance and overall healthiness of the dishes.

“We are beyond thrilled to have our executive chef attain this culinary achievement. To have the skill, discipline and creativity to complete this exam says a lot about a chef”, says Alexi Hakim, General Manager of the InterContinental Toronto Centre. “Chef Whalen’s talents really shine through in our food and beverage outlets, from the creation of the menu to the impeccable flavours of each dish, he puts his heart and soul into his work and it doesn’t go unnoticed by the guests who dine with us. We are truly inspired by his commitment to the culinary arts and congratulate him on this extraordinary accomplishment.”

“There are no words to express, how grateful I am to be a part of this exclusive group of talented chefs who have completed this culinary achievement before me”, adds Chef Whalen. “I’m excited to bring all my knowledge and experienced gained on this journey to the hotel and will continue to deliver exceptional dining experiences for our guests”.

Chef Whalen joined the InterContinental Toronto Centre as the Executive Chef in 2013 and oversees all cuisine of Azure Restaurant & Bar, 18,000 square feet of banquet and meeting space and 24-hour room service. With over 30 years of culinary experience, Chef Whalen holds several culinary achievements under his belt including acquiring the Certified Chef de Cuisine (CCC) designation at 25, making him the youngest chef in Canadato ever achieve this honour, and now adds the highest attainable culinary designation in Canada.

About InterContinental Toronto Centre

The InterContinental Toronto Centre is designed to fulfill every need of the global traveler. The 584- room hotel brings together affordable luxury, ideal location, and meeting facilities and personalized customer service. The hotel features Azure Restaurant & Bar and Spa InterContinental, a serene oasis offering a wide selection of spa treatments. Club InterContinental, an exclusive “hotel within a hotel” is designed with business travelers in mind. The three floors provide 91 elegantly appointed rooms and suites, private check-in, dedicated concierge and limousine service, a private lounge, library and boardroom. InterContinental Toronto Centre, the only hotel attached to the Metro Toronto Convention Centre,overlooking scenic Lake Ontario, is set in the heart of Toronto’s financial, shopping, theatre and restaurant districts. Reservations can be made at or direct reservations within Canada and US can be made at 1-800-422-7969 and worldwide reservations at 1-800-327-0200. The hotel is managed and operated under license by InterContinental Hotels Group (Canada), Inc.

SOURCE InterContinental Toronto Centre

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