Damien Bastiat - General Manager
Born in South West France, Damien always wanted to work in the hotel and restaurant industry.
He studied at Capbreton’s catering school but it was during his first work placement that he discovered the excitement of working in a two Michelin star property. After obtaining his diploma at the age of 17, there was no doubt in his mind that he eventually wanted to work at a two Michelin star level.
Damien then started work as Chef De Rang at “Le Relais de la Poste”, one of France’s longest maintained two Michelin star restaurants (38 years) and a Relais and Châteaux property. He was there for over seven years, working his way up the ladder. In order to understand the detail and complexity of a larger operation, Damien’s next move was to the “Hotel du Palais”. This property holds one Michelin star, and is part of the “Leading Hotels of the World” group. Damien took the position of head waiter, and after 15 months fine-tuning his skills, he chose to move abroad to the UK.
In early 2006, he started his new role at “Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons” as a Head Waiter and worked alongside some of the best professionals in the industry. Having enjoyed two years there he then joined the team at Gidleigh Park as deputy restaurant manager, before being promoted in the summer of 2009 to the role of Restaurant Manager.
In the later part of 2011, Damien became a St Julian Scholar and as a result obtained a scholarship for the highly regarded Hotel and Business School of Lausanne, in Switzerland where he spent three weeks on a management course to develop his skills further.
Upon his return, he was promoted to the role of Operations Manager and followed a development plan in order to become General Manager in one of The Gidleigh Collection properties.
In May 2013, following a series of movements within the group, Damien was appointed General Manager of Gidleigh Park. Well regarded by the team and guests alike, Damien's longevity and experience at the hotel will ensure Gidleigh Park’s continued success.
“Everyone in the team at Gidleigh Park is working towards the same goal, making our guests’ experience so special and that they feel that they are the only guests in the house”