The first five-star hotel to open in Chiang Mai, Thailand since the onset of the covid-19 pandemic is advocating for environmentally sustainable and healthy diets with the debut of its ‘360° Cuisine’ program. Set to open on 8 April, Meliá Chiang Mai features 260 rooms and sits in the heart of Chiang Mai.
Suksant Chutinthratip, the executive chef at Meliá Chiang Mai, has crafted an array of dishes that incorporate produce from the hotel’s organic farm and uses every part of each ingredient possible before food scraps are turned into compost at the farm.
“Our’ farm to plate’ efforts, sourcing organic produce that travels only a short distance to our hotel and using every part of each ingredient we can – roots, leaves, stems, stalks, and more – come full circle with ‘plate to farm’, whereby we return food waste back to the farm as fertilizer in a truly 360° concept,” said Chutinthratip.
Under the program, the hotel’s kitchen works alongside local farmers to help them improve sustainability and promote ethical production to make communities and the overall food system more resilient.
Recently, Meliá Chiang Mai partnered up with ORI9IN The Gourmet Farm, a 350-acre gourmet organic farm in the neighbouring San Sai District, to grow fruits, vegetables, and herbs on the broader ORI9IN property for its restaurants, bars, and spa.
The partnership between the hotel and ORI9IN allows local farmers to provide the hotel with substitute ingredients that would otherwise require being imported from Spain, such as tomatoes, salad leaves, and padrón peppers, for the hotel’s authentic Mediterranean cuisine.
The signature 360° Cuisine dishes reflect Chutinthratip’s dedication to the concept of “thoughtful cooking” focused on using as much of each ingredient as possible to reduce food waste.
“For Khao Khaab Hor Goong, for example, we use the prawn shells, prawn heads and garden herb stems for our stock base to poach the prawns, and lemon zest as part of the sauce to give a disarming citrus fragrance and flavour, before the leftover cooking oil is sent to be recycled into biodiesel,” said Chutinthratip.
Through the 360° Cuisine program, guests can also visit the ORI9IN farm to meet local farmers and educate themselves on sustainable farming.
Inspired by Meliá’s Spanish roots and celebrating Spain’s renowned gastronomy, Meliá Chiang Mai’s dining landscape will showcase restaurants Mai Restaurant and Bar and Laan Na Kitchen, bars Mai The Sky Bar and Tien Pool Bar, and lounges Ruen Kaew and The Level Lounge.