All-Star Kitchen, Front-of-House Team Assembled For New Restaurant Opening


A brand-new Boulevard is set to open on Vancouver’s ever-expanding restaurant road map this July.

Located at Vancouver’s iconic Sutton Place Hotel, Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar will present subtle, unexpected and playful approaches to cuisine, service and style. From early morning to late at night, the new 290-seat restaurant will offer guests a variety of culinary experiences: from the stylish dining room, seated oyster bar and craft-cocktail and champagne bar to the vintage-style lounge, private dining room and expansive wrap-around outdoor patio.

Providing a distinctive showcase for the culinary vision of Executive Chef Alex Chen, Boulevard’s opening marks Chen’s official return to his hometown of Vancouver after charting a top-10 finish representing Canada at the prestigious Bocuse d’Or culinary competition in Lyon, France in 2013. Previously, Chen spent six years as the Executive Chef of the legendary Polo Lounge at the Beverly Hills Hotel and held the roles of Senior Sous Chef at the Four Seasons Hotel Chicago and Chef de Cuisine at the Four Seasons Hotel Toronto.

With an innovative approach that blends a respect for the past with a celebration of the present, Chen’s seafood-focused menu is grounded in classical technique and training, while artfully infusing casual West Coast flair and creative hints of his international influences. Boulevard’s close proximity to the Pacific Ocean, Okanagan wine country and nearby farms, fisheries and ranches also aligns with one of Chen’s key culinary principles: to use the best locally sourced, farm-fresh ingredients.

Among the hand-picked roster of talent joining Chen in the Boulevard kitchen is Vancouver native and Chef de Cuisine Roger Ma — who worked under world-renowned chef Daniel Boulud at his flagship restaurant Daniel in New York before moving on to help launch Maison Boulud at the Ritz Carlton Montreal and Café Boulud and dBar at the Four Seasons Toronto — and Pastry Chef Jason Pitschke, whose resume includes stints at Whistler’s Bearfoot Bistro, Vancouver’s Cioppino’s and for the Glowbal Group, as well as at Maison Boulud in Beijing.

Steve Edwards, one of Vancouver’s preeminent hospitality professionals, joins Boulevard as Director of Operations and leads a blue-chip front-of-house team that represents a virtual who’s who of the local restaurant industry. Edwards previously served as Restaurant Director at internationally acclaimed Whistler restaurants Araxi and Bearfoot Bistro, as well as at Cibo Trattoria/UVA Wine & Cocktail Bar in Vancouver.

Following a 13-year tenure at the storied West Restaurant, Brian Hopkins assumes the role of Boulevard Maître d’. Hopkins is a 2010 B.C. Restaurant Hall of Fame inductee and recent winner of the Premier Crew designation for Outstanding Service at the 25th annual Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards. Wine Director Lisa Haley comes to Boulevard after serving as manager/sommelier at Tuck Shop Restaurant in Montreal and more recently as General Manager of Vancouver’s Burdock & Co., while renowned mixologist and cocktail architect Justin Taylor joins the Boulevard team as Bar Manager after seven years as Head Bartender at YEW Seafood + Bar at The Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver.

Those interested in keeping up-to-date with the latest news about the opening are invited to register for Boulevard’s e-newsletter at, become a fan of /blvdyvr on Facebook or follow @blvdyvr on Twitter.

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