Celebrity chef Michael Voltaggio is leaving The Langham Huntington in July, but the renovation of the hotel’s Michelin-star restaurant is going ahead as scheduled, said Langham spokeswoman Elsa Schelin.
These renderings, the “latest sketches” provided by The Langham, give a glimpse into the future look of the as-yet-unnamed restaurant.
The Dining Room will close July 18 and is slated to reopen in early October — now, with a new chef at its helm.
It’s not the first time the kitchen’s leadership has changed since the hotel began planning the renovations. Bill Johnson, head of the design firm, noted in an e-mailed statement that the restaurant redesign project started when chef Craig Strong was still in The Dining Room’s top spot.
“The arrival of Michael Voltaggio with his success on ‘Top Chef’ brought new energy, and we had a great time working with his ideas and tweaking the design to reflect his style and his cooking,” Johnson said. “While we are sad to see him go, we are excited about the space that we are creating and look forward to working with the new chef through the construction and the finishing touches. We are confident that our design reflects the forward thinking vision and direction of the Langham brand and we are eager for the city of Pasadena to experience this exciting new restaurant.”
From the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, Colo., the “Top Chef” talked to Krista Simmons of the L.A. Times’ Daily Dish blog about yesterday’s announcement that he’ll be leaving The Langham in Pasadena to start his own restaurant venture:
Krista Simmons: Because of your personality and your style of cooking, everyone was surprised that you stayed at the Langham for so long. Why leave now that they’re renovating?
Michael Voltaggio: I had to come to terms with the fact that I either stay in Pasadena and be at this restaurant being branded around me, or I can do something on my own outside of the Langham. I decided I want to make my own place. … At the end of the day I know that no matter what, that restaurant wasn’t mine.
KS: What neighborhoods are you scoping out? Is there a possibility that you might not even stay in L.A.?
MV: Restaurants don’t just fall out of the sky, so it’ll be a while. My goal is to stay in Los Angeles. I love L.A. and think it’s the most exciting food city to be in right now. … I’ll be looking in West Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Santa Monica, places with a lot of foot traffic.
“Top Chef” Michael Voltaggio will be leaving The Dining Room at The Langham Huntington Hotel & Spa when the restaurant closes for renovation on July 18, spokeswoman Elsa Schelin confirmed.
Voltaggio is leaving “to work on new projects.” Schelin said no further details about his departure were yet available.
Atlanta-based architecture firm The Johnson Studio will still manage the upcoming renovation of The Dining Room.
Here’s the full statement from Schelin:
“The Langham Huntington, Pasadena is grateful for our partnership with Chef Voltaggio this past year and wish him great success in his future endeavors. The Dining Room will close on July 18 to undergo a renovation, with an expected re-opening at the end of September. The restaurant will re-open with a new name and a more modern and stylish look and feel, designed by The Johnson Studio. Exact details regarding the restaurant’s name, design details, menu and launch date will be disclosed in the coming months.”