SOURCE: Marriott International

Marriott International

August 07, 2012 10:22 ET

Chef Bill Downes Joins Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor at Camden Yards

Executive Chef Brings Farm-Fresh Principles to the Table at The Yard

BALTIMORE, MD--(Marketwire - Aug 7, 2012) - The Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor at Camden Yards, already renowned among Baltimore convention center hotels for its excellent cuisine, is pleased to announce the addition of Bill Downes as the Executive Chef of the hotel. Downes has more than 20 years of experience and brings a passion for simplistic, farm-fresh recipes. Most recently, he was senior banquet chef at the prestigious Renaissance Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C. 

 "I've been exploring Baltimore's rich culinary scene; many don't realize the city has fantastic access to urban farms and farmers markets," said Chef Downes. "It's an exciting challenge to take the fresh produce and translate it into an unforgettable food experience unique to the Chesapeake Bay region." 

A graduate of the Academy of Culinary Arts, Chef Downes learned a great deal spending his childhood on his grandparents' four-acre farm in Englishtown, New Jersey, picking figs and making fresh jam to sell at the family farm stand. This farm-fresh theme has carried through to become a strong foundation for Chef Downes' food philosophy -- wholeheartedly believing in the superiority of fresh, all-natural ingredients. Throughout his career, Chef Downes has worked in well-respected establishments including the Molly Pitcher Inn, Restaurant Lila in the National Hotel, and T-Bones' Tuscan Steakhouse in New Jersey. 

As the Executive Chef at Marriott Inner Harbor at Camden Yards, a top choice for foodies among hotels near Oriole Park, Chef Downes oversees the hotel's creative culinary team with the goal of completely revolutionizing the hotel's food and beverage program. The centerpiece of this ambitious project is the hotel's Inner Harbor Baltimore restaurant, The Yard. To support his farm-fresh mission, Chef Downes has begun growing a garden of vegetables and herbs on the hotel rooftop with the vision of building a greenhouse to support year-round growth of the very freshest of ingredients. 

"We are thrilled with the changes Chef Downes has made to our program," said General Manager, Onahlea Shimunek. "His vision for farm-fresh ingredients has brought us a revamped menu full of delicious ingredients as well as a beautiful, not to mention resourceful, rooftop garden." 

When not in the kitchen, Chef Downes enjoys bringing his farm-fresh message to the city youth through the YMCA and school programs to teach children and young adults about nutrition. He also enjoys spending time with family, trips to the beach and playing hockey. 

About the Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor at Camden Yards
The Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor Hotel at Camden Yards is centrally located in the heart of Baltimore, Maryland, just a short walk to Inner Harbor. The hotel near the National Aquarium offers exciting deals and packages for weekend getaways and last-minute trips. The hotel boasts two of the best restaurants near Baltimore's Inner Harbor: The Yard, for refined dining in a casual atmosphere, and Cafe Promenade, featuring a new menu of Chesapeake Bay classics. Sports enthusiasts will enjoy the Inner Harbor hotel's close proximity to Oriole Park at Camden Yards and the Raven's M&T Bank Stadium.

About Marriott Hotels & Resorts
Marriott Hotels & Resorts continues to inspire and provide a balanced life on the road for discerning and high-achieving business and leisure travelers, offering warm, professional service; sophisticated yet functional guest room design; lobby spaces that facilitate working, dining and socializing; restaurants and bars serving international cuisine prepared simply and from the freshest ingredients; meeting and event spaces and services that are gold standard; and expansive, 24-hour fitness facilities. All Marriott hotels participate in the award-winning Marriott Rewards frequent travel program that allows members to earn hotel points or airline miles for every dollar spent during each stay. For more information, visit

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    Ann Lafontaine
    Marriott International
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