Ryan Cruz

Ryan Cruz

Hotel Wailea - Wailea, HI

Aiming to inspire curiosity wherever he goes, Ryan Cruz creates an interactive culinary experience by not only mentoring his team of cooks, but connecting with guests to ensure each dish captures the bounty of Maui to their liking.

Born in the Philippines and adopted at the age of three, Cruz’s love for cooking began as a child growing up in Southern California, where he assisted his father and grandmother in cooking for family gatherings. After graduating from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Los Angeles, he joined CUT by Wolfgang Puck in Beverly Hills where he spent four years, starting as a prep cook and working his way up to lead line cook. Cruz spent the next 10 years honing his culinary skills in fine dining establishments across the globe, spanning Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles, CUT at 45 Park Lane in London, CUT New York City and Spago in both Istanbul and Maui. He later transitioned to working as a private chef under his mentor Chef Raymond Weber, bringing bespoke dinners and events to celebrity clients such as Oprah Winfrey.

Now a full-time resident of Maui, Ryan Cruz enjoys building relationships with local farmers and fishers to utilize the island’s unique and abundant ingredients in his culinary creations. He draws inspiration from his love of Japanese art and elaborate floral arrangements, using vibrantly colored elements to replicate a bountiful garden on each plate.

In his free time, Cruz enjoys ocean activities such as paddle boarding, spearfishing and kayaking, as well as dining at restaurants across the island with his wife, who is also a chef. A natural grill master, he feels most at home when cooking over an open flame, channeling his earlier years working under Wolfgang Puck. Cruz’s favorite part of working at Hotel Wailea is collaborating with both guests and his kitchen counterparts, bringing a holistic strategy to property-wide dining experiences.


Hawaiian Airlines Presents Behind the Cellar Door

Hawaii Convention Center

November 8, 2024

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