Former Scottish Chef of the Year James Murphy has returned as executive chef of the Grand Central hotel](http://www.principal-hayley.com/venues-and-hotels/grand-central-hotel), Glasgow, 30 years after leaving the property as commis chef.
He will head up the kitchens of the 186-bedroom hotel which will reopen next month following a £20m refurbishment.
"I am thrilled to be part of the Grand Central's renaissance," said Murphy, who has spent the past 11 years as executive chef at the Hilton Glasgow. "It's a massive project to be involved in. Right now the kitchen is a shell but every chef dreams of being able to fill that shell and I'm relishing every minute of it.
"I've been spending a lot of time visiting the country's best farmers markets to source the finest local produce - passion, simplicity and consistency is the key to a great kitchen and it's great to be able to get out and about to find the best ingredients for the menu."
Murphy studied hospitality management and catering at the Glasgow College of Food Technology before going on to work as a commis chef under Anton Mosimann at the Dorchester hotel, London. He will be supported in his new job by senior sous chef Zoltan Szabo from Hungary.
Principal Hayley bought the former Central hotel out of administration in June 2009 for about £2m and set about taking the property back to basics. It has uncovered many of its original features including marble floors and intricate cornices.
The refurbishment includes the addition of 30 new bedrooms, restoration of the Grand Room of Glasgow ballroom with capacity for 500 guests, a lavish Champagne bar overlooking Central Station's concourse, and a new bar, restaurant and deli.
General manager of the Grand Central hotel, Laurie Nicol, said she is delighted to have Murphy on board. "In its glory days, the Central hotel has a first class food offering and with James leading the kitchen I'm confident that we can put the renamed Grand Central back on the map."
By Janet Harmer
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