AS SENIOR MANAGER of food and beverage design and executive chef for United Airlines, Gerry McLoughlin ensures all the culinary options on the carrier taste exceptional, even at 35,000 feet, including those served on the airline’s recently launched Polaris business-class concept. Unique touches in the new premium cabin include chef-designed menus, tempting snack options available throughout the flight and an enticing variety of desserts. Mimosa and Bloody Mary carts will delight passengers on morning flights.
McLoughlin followed completion of his culinary degree with a five-year apprenticeship at Dublin’s iconic The Shelbourne hotel. McLoughlin’s more than 30 years of culinary management experience also took him to Chicago’s well-known The Drake hotel and The Metropolitan Club. As a member of the American Culinary Federation, McLoughlin oversees worldwide menu development for United Airlines.
United Airlines is also the official airline of The Trotter Project, working with Trotter alumni to develop exciting menus for flights. The Trotter Project unites budding talent in the culinary arts and hospitality industries through a variety of mentorship programs.
WHICH DESTINATIONS INSPIRED YOU, AND HOW HAS THAT INSPIRATION TRANSLATED INTO YOUR COOKING/MENUS?
One of the best aspects about my job is I have the opportunity to travel the world and taste the cuisines and flavors of the destinations we fly from. Each destination brings new aspects to the table — quite literally — and I enjoy working with the team to incorporate these great new flavors in the onboard menu.
WHOM DO YOU CONSIDER TO BE YOUR CULINARY HERO?
My mother — my first culinary experience was at her apron strings. Her passion was to cook with fresh ingredients and the flavors that resonate from them guided me to search for new ingredients to cook with at home and in the air.
WHAT ONE PERSON MOST INFLUENCED YOUR COOKING STYLE, AND HOW?
Chef Charlie Trotter; I can honestly tell you the best meal I’ve ever had was at his restaurant. He took pride in breaking the status quo and was extremely adventurous in his cuisine.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE FOOD CITY?
Hong Kong blends the flavors of East and West with a combination of amazing European foods with the diversity of some absolutely fantastic street food. It’s a beautiful blend of cultures.
WHAT DO YOU THINK THE NEXT BIG TREND ON THE FOOD SCENE WILL BE?
People are really moving more toward handheld items they can enjoy on the go — real food with bold flavors where they can broaden their cultural and culinary horizons.
GBTA’s Convention 2021 will bring the business travel industry together for the first time in a long time. Once again, you’ll learn and connect with experts and each other, along with discussions with leading thinkers, entrepreneurs and change makers addressing the issues that matter most.
I imagine that when writer Hans Christian Andersen mused, “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale,” he was standing at the edge of Copenhagen’s historic Tivoli Gardens, one of his favorite haunts, enlivened by the swirl of human happiness that surrounded him: children laughing; carousels spinning; games of chance played for prizes; lovers holding hands; hungry people whispering over sweets, hot drinks, beer and towering, open-faced smørrebrød, Denmark’s quintessential sandwich. That fairy tale lives on today at the second-oldest amusement park in the world, a spectacle of folly architecture, bakeries, gardens, rides, restaurants, puppet shows and joy ... and which also happens to be one of the city’s most storied places to convene for business.
The restored Park Hyatt Toronto reopened its doors, bringing luxury, sophistication and glamour alongside a nod to the hotel’s Canadian heritage. Alessandro Munge of Studio Munge collaborated on the hotel’s refresh, drawing inspiration from Canada’s seasons and natural landscapes.
Without a doubt, the pandemic changed the role of airports in the travel industry. Hamad International Airport’s role evolved in many ways since the pandemic hit. Now, more than ever, airports are responsible for creating a secure passenger experience. As the gateway to Qatar and the world, the safety and wellbeing of staff and passengers has always been at the core of Hamad International Airport’s strategy.
I recently dined at Irwin’s in Philadelphia. The restaurant is located on the rooftop of the Bok Building, a former school turned collective of small businesses, non-profits, artist workshops, a bar and restaurant. I previously visited Bok for the bar and yoga classes, and I was excited to experience the restaurant.
Cathay Pacific reaffirms its commitment to reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 with a pledge to use Sustainable Aviation Fuel for 10 percent of its total fuel consumption by 2030. The airline has made pioneering efforts in supporting SAF development for more than 10 years.
The Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) Convention 2021 will be unlike any other convention before it, as we come together in person for the first time since the business travel industry drastically changed and look forward to rebuilding and reshaping the future. GBTA Convention 2021 will bring all of us together to learn from experts and each other, in-person at Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, Nov. 17–19. The safety of our attendees is our top priority. View health and safety protocols.
Arriving early afternoon in Puerto Rico, we jumped in an Uber and took a short, 15-minute drive from the airport to La Concha. As it was Tuesday, the streets were not too busy and the hotel lobby was calm. During the weekend, the scene likely would have been more bustling. We were greeted by a staff member who requested proof of vaccination and government-issued ID, and were given a wristband to indicate we were fully vaccinated. All guests are required to be vaccinated and wear masks at all times while moving around the hotel. Hand sanitizer stations were placed around the lobby, in elevators and in each common area.