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Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait at Burj Alshaya

  • Al Soor Street, Al Mirqab, PO Box 735, Safat, 13008, Kuwait
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Lucio Colombo

Executive Pastry Chef
“I really do enjoy training, being side by side in the kitchen. It creates synergy and shows how passionate you are in your beliefs and what you do.”

 

Four Seasons Tenure

  • Originally 2005, now since 2017
  • First Four Seasons Assignment: Commis 2, Four Seasons Hotel London at Canary Wharf (formerly a Four Seasons hotel)

Employment History

  • Simit and Smith, New York; Pasteleria Escriba, Barcelona; Divan Group, Istanbul; Totel Torreblanca, Monovar, Spain; Patisserie Ducobu, Waterloo, Belgium; Stefano Laghi Chocolat, Faenza, Italy; Four Seasons Hotel London at Canary Wharf (formerly a Four Seasons hotel)

Birthplace

  • Lecco, Italy

Education

  • Culinary High School Crotto Caurga, Chiavenna Sondrio; Boscolo Etoile Culinary Art School, Venice

Languages Spoken

  • Italian, English, Spanish

In a city filled with sweet teeth, Lucio Colombo knows what it takes to cook up success at Four Seasons Hotel KuwaitaAt Burj Alshaya. “We have to deliver,” he says, reeling off beauty, innovation, and especially flavour as the core elements of the experience he creates as opening Executive Pastry Chef. “There is a lot of competition in Kuwait, so our aim is always to prepare the very best flavour and presentation. That’s mandatory.”

Colombo, who got off to a quick start with Four Seasons as a teenager before taking a winding route to rejoining the company in Kuwait, is pleasantly surprised by the accessibility of first-rate ingredients in the city. Despite a total lack of local production, “the markets are impressive.” Meanwhile, locals who travel a lot have become enamoured of the high-quality desserts they enjoy abroad and at home. “Actually, the pastry shops here are on level with the best in Paris,” he says, noting that's a good thing. “That means people here are interested and willing to try the very best. Those are the customers that we’re targeting.”

The pastry kitchen Colombo helped put together at Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait is the best he has seen, including a chocolate room, ice cream room, bakery, and the finest equipment available, imported from Italy and France. “Hotels typically don’t dedicate too much to pastry production. But we make everything in house and have so much to cover, we need a big space.”

Colombo’s team of 16 produces desserts for 5 onsite outlets including the Italian restaurant Dai Forni, the rooftop pan-Asian restaurant Sintoho, as well as the live station restaurant Elements, the pool lounge Al Bandar, and the lobby lounge Al Soor. It’s diverse group in the kitchen: skillful and hungry to learn all they can about the top-quality ingredients Colombo uses and the European culture behind his techniques. “I really do enjoy training, being side by side in the kitchen. It creates synergy and shows how passionate you are in your beliefs and what you do.”

Though Colombo grew up watching his mother cooking in the home kitchen, it wasn’t until he was 14 that he even thought about becoming a chef. “That’s the age Italians start choosing careers,” he remembers. “Frankly, I wasn’t sure, but then I thought, yeah.” He worked at restaurants through five years of high school. “As soon as I finished school, I knew that my job was not going to be in a hot kitchen. I always loved desserts.”

His first spot out of the gate was working under Sebastiano Spriveri, now Executive Chef of the Kuwait hotel, as a Commis in the pastry kitchen of Four Seasons former address at Canary Wharf in London. Colombo then returned to pastry school in Venice before hitting the road.

Following work in assorted pastry kitchens in Italy, Belgium and Spain, he joined the Divan Group in Istanbul as corporate pastry chef with oversight of dessert menus for assorted hotels and pastry shops throughout the Middle East. After four years he moved on again, to head up a pastry lab under renowned pastry chef Christian Escriba in Barcelona, and then to consult for a pastry shop start up in New York before being tapped by Four Seasons for the opening in Kuwait.

Colombo is now nothing if not thrilled with his first opportunity to lead a large culinary operation and infuse his passion into the pastry. “It is really inspiring for me,” he says. “When they give you a Ferrari to drive, who could not be happy?”