Michael Lofaro

Fairmont Kea Lani - Wailea, HI

Renowned across the Hawaiian Islands for his innovative culinary flair that eloquently encapsulates the essence of the region, Michael Lofaro serves as the executive chef at Fairmont Kea Lani, showcasing a multifaceted skill set that extends beyond the kitchen.

Drawing inspiration from his familial roots and community ties, as well as his profound connection to the ocean and land, Lofaro’s culinary creativity reflects a deep commitment to perpetuating Hawaiian culture. A devoted waterman and fisherman, his immersion in Hawaiian traditions began through pursuits like canoe paddling and fishing, culminating in a pivotal experience with the Polynesian Voyaging Society aboard the transoceanic sailing vessel, Hokulea, during the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage. Committed to his ongoing education in olelo Hawaii, he continually integrates traditional wisdom into his culinary endeavors, often crafting experiential dining concepts rooted in the ancient practices of Kaulana Mahina.

A graduate of The Culinary Institute of America, Lofaro commenced his culinary journey in 1998 under the mentorship of Chef Michael Mina at AQUA in San Francisco. His exploration of Maui’s culinary landscape began with Chef Mina’s venture, followed by roles at Quest NYC under Chef Tom Valenti and Capische Restaurant as Sous Chef. In 2002, he garnered acclaim as the Executive Chef at The Mills Tavern in Providence, Rhode Island, earning the prestigious Mobil 4 Star Award in 2005. However, Lofaro’s heart remained in Maui, prompting his return in 2006 as Chef De Cuisine of Humuhumunukunukuaapuaa, where he eventually ascended to the role of Executive Sous Chef at Grand Wailea in 2014, a position he held for nearly 17 years.

Throughout his illustrious career, Michael Lofaro has garnered accolades for his steadfast advocacy of local agriculture, fishing industries, talent development, and community engagement. Notably, he was honored as “Chef of the Year” at the 2016 Aipono Awards and received an EMMY for his role in SEARCH Hawaii: Where Food Meets Culture.

PARTICIPATING EVENTS

First Hawaiian Bank Presents 26th Annual Roy Yamaguchi Golf Classic

Kaanapali Golf Course and Roy's Kaanapali

October 25, 2024

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