Tourists in Australia can sleep in comfort – vegan comfort that is – as the very first completely vegan hotel is opening next month. Matthew Kenney, a top U.S. restaurateur and plant-based pioneer, is the man responsible for opening Alibi at Ovolo in Woolloomooloo, Sydney, next month.
Kenney was trained in classic French-style cuisine. He later turned vegan and launched a plant-based culinary school along with several well-known restaurants. The chef has quite a reputation within the American market and his focus is now to spread thay positive awareness of vegan food Down Under.
“I’ve had a long relationship with Australia and the timing was simply right. Australia is seen as a leader in wellbeing and lifestyle and Ovolo came to me with the opportunity at the right time,” Kenney told Delicious. “The food scene is so vibrant here – great produce, chefs, sunshine. I’m enjoying exploring the amazing and diverse produce available in Australia.”
Group Executive Chef, Kasper Christensen, will be overseeing Kenney’s Australian vision. Girish Jhunjhnuwala, Ovolo Hotels’ Founder & CEO, said the inclusion of this plant-based hotel was a natural step. “We have listened to the market and know that healthy eating is a priority, so we made the decision to partner with Matthew to develop a new plant-based concept not yet seen in an Australian hotel restaurant,” he said.
Australia has recently been making vegan headlines, for all the right reasons. The country is becoming more and more accepting of vegan lifestyles and accommodating for this ever-growing demand. It’s the third largest vegan market in the world.
A vegan burger in Australia has held the title of ‘Best Burger’, beating all competitors, for two years running. Last Christmas showed a record number of Aussies eating vegan. Both Domino’s and Halo Top ice cream hit the country earlier this year with vegan offerings. Domino’s vegan pizza launch has been so successful its sold out of vegan cheese. And then there’s the country’s first ever vegan cruise, which launches later this year.