For chef Richard Sandoval, the recipe for the perfect holiday is simple

Richard Sandoval is the globetrotting chef behind some of the world’s most exciting restaurant concepts, including the recently opened Baptiste & Bottle and Noyane at Conrad Chicago. Here, he reflects on how travel elevates his renowned flavor combinations and shares the secret to a perfect escape.
When taking time off in Chicago, where is your favorite place to go?
I don’t have a favorite, but I’m always looking for new places when I’m in town. One place I do periodically return to is the Italian restaurant Girl & The Goat.

Where’s home and how much of the year are you there?
Home is Sunny Isles Beach, Florida, where I spend half of my time.

What makes you feel “at home” when you’re traveling?
Food always makes me feel at home. No matter where I am, I always try to find comfort foods such as warm soups and braised meats, but I also enjoy doing what the locals do—visiting markets and eating street food.

You arrive at a place you’ve never been before. What’s the first thing you do?
I look for the food markets to discover new ingredients. I also scout out the best local chefs and visit new restaurants to get inspired.

Are you able to switch off during your travels?
When you are a business owner it’s very difficult to switch off—whether you’re traveling or at home. However, sometimes when I am immersed in the local culture of a new place, I find it easy to not think about work for a while.

Conrad Chicago’s views of the Magnificent Mile

The view of the Magnificent Mile from Conrad Chicago

What do you need for a perfect holiday?
Great food, family, friends, and good cocktails.

Where do you want to travel to next?
I am planning an African safari! I am excited to visit different cities in Africa as I have never been to that part of the world before.

Where do you look for inspiration?
Around the world. I love experiencing different cultures and I am very fortunate to have restaurants in some of the most exciting cities. This means I get to observe what other chefs are doing, keep track of current trends, and try new ingredients.

Why do you love what you do?
I love what I do for many reasons, but most importantly I get to share it with people from all walks of life, my passion for food and hospitality. I am very lucky to be given the opportunity to share my culture and heritage with people around the world.

What has been your proudest moment?
Seeing the evolution of Mexican gastronomy grow around the world and to know that I was part of it has been extremely fulfilling.

Discover Richard Sandoval’s restaurants at the Conrad Chicago and book your table now at Conrad Chicago.


Digital Conrad Concierge and Complimentary Wi-Fi* when you book at
*Standard Wi-Fi is free. Premium (if available) has a fee. Not free at properties with a resort charge