Mike Cosse was destined for restaurant management. He grew up in Louisiana, south of New Orleans, in a family of commercial fisherman and restaurant operators. He always knew he would do one thing or the other.
He started out fishing “Louisiana style” – out on the river with his Dad shrimping, oystering and crabbing. He then studied Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management at the University of Southern Mississippi.
While in college, Mike found his favorite weekend activity was to buy a hundred pounds of crawfish or a whole pig and put on a feast. He soon realized he was a chef at heart and so went on to obtain a Chef’s Certificate and an Associate Degree in Culinary Arts at Delgado Community College in New Orleans.
Upon graduation he launched a very successful culinary career -working as an Executive Chef and/or Director of Food and Beverage at Hilton Hotels in Tennessee, California, New Orleans and Texas. When the opportunity came to be the Food and Beverage Director at the Hilton Gulf Front Hotel Pensacola Beach he jumped on the offer. Mike’s since been promoted to this position at the Hampton Inn Hotel Pensacola Beach and the Holiday Inn Resort Hotel Pensacola Beach, as well as the Hilton.
Mike is an avid outdoor sportsman with a passion for offshore fishing and is thrilled to be working in a place where he can launch his boat and drive six miles to the Pensacola Pass and the emerald waters of the Gulf of Mexico. He is also delighted to have a great job enabling him to raise his three kids on the Gulf Coast, close to his family.
Executive Chef , Dan Dunn, is a well-known character on Pensacola Beach. His culinary ability, proven for the last three years in his role as Executive Chef of H20 Cajun Asian Restaurant on Pensacola Beach has garnered him local celebrity. He graduated from the Western Culinary Institute in Portland, Oregon with honors and polished his knife skills in some of the best known restaurants in Pensacola. In 2000, Dan was voted “Best Chef of the Coast” by the Independent News.
His culinary style emphasizes fresh local ingredients and dishes made from scratch. Affectionately called ‘Dano’ by everyone who knows him, he’s an outgoing and humble guy who cares about his community, family and friends as much as he does about food. He’s also an avid surfer.
Romeo grew up migrating around the United States and the world as a “navy brat”. His father was stationed in Pensacola in the nineties and eventually retired here.
Romeo’s first hospitality job was as a bus boy in a restaurant in Orange Beach, Alabama when he was still in high school. He knew right away that he had found his calling in restaurant work and says, “I appreciate that every day is both a challenge and different from the day before. I love the people I work with, the people I work for and the people I take care of.”
When he graduated high school, Romeo attended Pensacola Junior College and then studied Psychology at the University of Western Florida. He continued to work in restaurants to pay for school. He was offered a job at H20 in 2003, just a couple of months after the Hilton Hotel opened on Pensacola Beach He had come to the beach to meet up with friends and filled in an application while wearing flip flops and board shorts. He started in room service, was promoted to server and then to management in 2005.
Romeo says, “I’ve been here so long because it’s a great job. I love being on beach, serving the best sushi in town. Best of all, it might be the only fine dining restaurant in the United States that people come into wearing a bikini.”
Anthony was born in the Philippines to a American military dad and Philippino mom. Like most military kids, he spent his youth traveling the United Sates and the world with his family. He graduated high school in Japan and and then worked there as a substitute teacher and a tutor. He returned to the US to attend college.
Eventually his father was stationed in Pensacola and Anthony decided to make the Gulf Coast his home. He was hired by the Hilton in Pensacola Beach to work as a room service attendant in 2005. Within a year- and-a- half he was promoted to supervisor and then in 2008 was promoted to management.
Anthony says, “I’m glad I landed in this career. I like the diversity of tasks, one minute serving a table and the next rolling sushi. I love owning the moment and turning an upset guest into a happy one.” He also is grateful to live on the beach and goes fishing at least once a week and always gives his catch to his mom.