About Ken Gladysz: Chef Ken Gladysz was drawn to the culinary profession because he could create a variety of dishes that reflected his personality while utilizing many different products. He loves that the culinary world is ever changing, offering new challenges, opportunities, and the chance to work with interesting and diverse people.
Gladysz undertook quite a culinary journey to get to his current post as Executive Chef of The Hotel Hershey in 2006. Beginning in Florida and taking him as far as Indonesia, his career has generated a style rich in international influences combined with a "down-home" feel. The result is surprising and creative fare, an ideal complement to all culinary aspects of the Hotel.
Gladysz entered the culinary field in 1981. After a five-year period as a sauté chef at Aldo's Black Pearl, a fine-dining restaurant in Sarasota, Florida, Gladysz obtained his certification from the Culinary Institute of America. Upon graduation, Gladysz was hired at Actuelle, a trendsetting restaurant in Dallas. There he learned about New American cuisine.
Gladysz joined the Four Seasons Hotel and Resort Company in 1992 as sous chef at the Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas at Las Colinas. The decade that followed was a whirlwind of international activity, with placements including Tokyo, Japan; Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; and Bali, Indonesia. Gladysz was instrumental in introducing western cuisine at these properties as well as learning the techniques of both Middle Eastern and Asian cuisine.
Gladysz's domestic experience includes assignments at the AAA Five-Diamond Four Seasons Houston Hotel and The Four Seasons Resort & Club in Irving, Texas. Prior to coming to Hershey, he was the executive chef at the Four Seasons Resort in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, which he opened for the company in 2003.
At The Hotel Hershey, Gladysz motivates his kitchen team – which grows seasonally from 40 to 60 – to consistently prepare exceptional cuisine using high-quality products. He draws on his vast experience and expands beyond European classical technique to incorporate the cuisines of Japan and Indonesia, as well as the spirited and original fare of the American West.
A milestone in Gladysz's career is The Hotel Hershey being awarded Restaurants & Institutions coveted Ivy Award in 2010. This well-deserved honor recognizes Gladysz and his staff as professionals who are driven by providing quality and excellence. In 2011, Gladysz was named "Chef of the Year" by the Central Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Culinary Federation.
Gladysz believes that chocolate is a great ingredient. Because almost everyone associates it with sweets, he enjoys the creativity of incorporating chocolate products into savory dishes.
The Hotel Hershey is one of America's landmark hotels, offering 276 guest rooms and 23,500 square feet of meeting and function space. Situated high atop the town of Hershey, Pennsylvania, the 1930's hotel is a recipient of both the Forbes Four-Star Award and the AAA Four-Diamond Award. The Hotel Hershey is also a member of Historic Hotels of America.
The Hotel Hershey is one in a collection of Hershey Resorts, the official resorts of Hersheypark. The other two include Hershey Lodge and the Hershey Highmeadow Campground. Guests of each of our resorts enjoy the value, convenience, and special access of our Hershey Resorts Advantage.