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  • Writer's pictureNicole Ruskell

Chef Jean Imbert takes on the Hotel Martinez in Cannes

A fusion of gastronomy and glamour beckons as celebrity chef, Jean Imbert, launches his reign of the Plage du Martinez during the Film Festival.


Jean Imbert chef at the Martinez Hotel
Chef Jean Imbert takes over at the Martinez Hotel. © BOBY

As the glittering lights of the French Riviera shimmered with A-List movie stars, the Martinez Hotel in Cannes unveiled its new culinary luminary, Chef Jean Imbert, as their new chef. With the prestigious Cannes Film Festival in full swing, the hotel kicked off the festival season with the surprise debut of one of France’s most popular chefs and one of Vanity Fair’s 50 most influential French people.


At the helm of the Plaza Athénée since June 2021, succeeding legendary Alain Ducasse, Chef Jean Imbert surprised everyone by winning his first star for the restaurant "Jean Imbert au Plaza Athénée" after only nine weeks in operation. But his rapid ascent didn’t stop there; in March 2022, he became the first chef of the historic Christian Dior boutique at 30 Avenue Montaigne in Paris and the following year, became the Chef of the legendary Venice Simplon-Orient-Express. He started this year working with the legendary Le Brando hotel, nestled in the heart of the Tetiaroa atoll, in February and now is taking on Cannes.


This isn’t Imbert’s first foray in the French Riviera, as he opened ToShare in 2020 together with Pharell Williams, just before he was voted Chef of the Year by Le Quotidien. Needless to say, Jean Imbert brings quite the star power to the Martinez!


Renowned for his unwavering passion for creating unforgettable dining experiences, it is Chef Jean Imbert's artistic flair and dedication to the craft that has garnered him such acclaim across the globe. As with any master, Jean Imbert started early, being the youngest graduate of the Institut Paul Bocuse, honed his skills alongside renowned chefs such as Joël Robuchon and Gordon Ramsay, and through the years, he crafted a culinary identity that is uniquely his own, effortlessly blending traditional French techniques with a contemporary twist.


A revamped Plage du Martinez

Chef Jean Imbert takes over at the Martinez Hotel. © BOBY
Chef Jean Imbert at La Plage du Martinez. © BOBY

Now, the Martinez Hotel has become Chef Imbert's canvas. Starting with La Plage du Martinez, the breezy, chic beach restaurant on the famed Croisette, he is fulfilling his childhood dream. On 16 May 2023, to coincide with the opening of the 76th Cannes Film Festival, La Plage du Martinez ‘launched’ the new chef like the premiere of a film.


His personal team of designers (the man is a living brand) worked with the Hotel Martinez and Interior Designer, Rémi Tessier, to makeover the restaurant with fun, cinematic touches, such as menus created like a film posters ("A Hotel Martinez Production") and director’s chairs with the names of actors and directors that the chef admires. Choose from Martin Scorsese, Grace Kelly, Cary Grant, and Audrey Hepburn or perhaps your own favourite cinema star!


Jean Imbert’s popularity comes from his unique mixture of chic but approachable, traditional but fun dishes. Here, he won’t disappoint, with an almost endless supply of fresh, local ingredients, Imbert's culinary creations promise to be a harmonious fusion of delectable flavours, impeccable presentation, and a touch of theatricality.


What’s on the menu?

Dishes like the ‘tomate ananas condiments d’ici,’ ‘la volaille à la diable violon sautée,’ ‘le rouget farci façon ‘Vivi Baisos,’’ and ‘la dorade Riviera comme à SDO’ read more like film taglines and are sure to bring a smile to francophone faces.


Nevertheless, a diverse repertoire of small plates, sharing plates, hearty grilled meats and fish, a plentiful selection of vegetarian dishes, and delightful desserts, such as Granny's cherry clafoutis, and iced Tiramisù. His dishes remain true to his origin but also transcend cultural boundaries treating diners to a symphony of flavours, each dish meticulously crafted with a touch of finesse that only a master chef can deliver.



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