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 Benchmark's Brendan Slaven, Executive Chef at Glen Cove Mansion Hotel
and Conference Center, Wins Global Copper Skillet Culinary Competition
The Woodlands (Houston), Texas, April 13, 2006 - Benchmark Hospitality International has formally announced that Brendan Slaven, executive chef at the Glen Cove Mansion Hotel and Conference Center, has won the global Copper Skillet culinary competition held recently at the 25th Anniversary Annual Conference of the International Association of Conference Centers (IACC). 

Slaven had previously won the United States' title of the competition. He competed in the global phase with First Place chefs from Denmark, Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Sweden.

The theme for the 2006 Copper Skillet competition, witnessed live by a crowd of hundreds, was Provençal with each chef selecting two of five "mystery" protein ingredients unveiled just prior to the competition.  Chef Slaven selected Dover Sol Goujons and frog legs, utilizing a number of complementary pantry ingredients, culinary accessories and on-the-spot creativity to prepare a superb winning selection.

"What set Brendan apart was that he was very much on the theme - he nailed Provençal," stated Judge William Franklin, a Certified Master Chef.  "He worked multiple disciplines into his dish.  Pasta was handmade ... and he had multiple vegetables, lots of texture.  His nutritional balance was very strong.  The flavors were popping.  You could eat his offering and not get palate fatigue."

Bob Zappatelli, Benchmark's vice president of food & beverage and the master of ceremonies for the event, said, "Brendan is a superb chef who proved he can create culinary magic under the intense spotlight of live international competition.  His execution of his dish was flawless from start to finish."

The Copper Skillet event was held during the 25th Anniversary IACC Annual Conference, which took place at Benchmark's Cheyenne Mountain Resort of Colorado Springs, Colorado.  The annual competition is designed to showcase the culinary artistry and skills of the best chefs at IACC-member hotels, resorts and conference centers worldwide. The international competition places the spotlight directly on the important contributions chefs make each day to ensure each guest's experience is the very best possible. 

L to R:  Burt Cabanas, Benchmark's Chairman & CEO; Sam Haigh, Benchmark's President & COO; Brendan Slaven,
Executive Chef at Benchmark's Glen Cove Mansion Hotel and Conference Center; Sean McLaughlin, GM at Glen Cove
Mansion; Jeff Farina, President of IACC, Benchmark's Chief Development Officer.

About Executive Chef Brendan Slaven

Brendan Slaven is executive chef at Glen Cove Mansion Hotel and Conference Center of Glen Cove, Long Island, New York.  A Gold Medal chef, Slaven has cooked for Presidents, Heads of State, Diplomats and Ambassadors during his career.  

Chef Slaven gained significant experience in the culinary arts while working at such renowned establishments as Daniel, located in Manhattan, and the signature hotel, the Waldorf=Astoria.  He has also served as executive chef for major corporations, including Sony Entertainment and Lehman Brothers.  

Mr. Slaven holds a culinary degree from the renowned Culinary Institute of America, located in Hyde Park, New York.  He has received numerous honors for his culinary excellence, including the US and International Copper Skillet Championships.

About IACC

Celebrating its Silver Anniversary, the International Association of Conference Centers, founded in 1981, is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting understanding and awareness of the conference center industry.  Active members meet a stringent set of Universal Criteria and agree to a Code of Ethics.  Currently, the association includes approximately 400 members from the United States, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Sweden, France, England, The Netherlands, Germany and Japan. For more information, visit the website at

About Glen Cove Mansion Hotel and Conference Center

The award-winning Glen Cove Mansion Hotel and Conference Center is situated on 55 secluded and landscaped acres on Long Island's historic Gold Coast, 30 minutes from New York City,  JFK International and LaGuardia Airports.  The spacious Georgian-style mansion features stunning vistas of Long Island Sound and was once part of a prestigious collection of gracious country estates, later becoming one of the nation's first dedicated conference center hotels.  Today the elegant property features 196 richly appointed guestrooms, including four suites, the Garden Room Restaurant with magnificent views of the terraces, a large and comfortable pub, private dining rooms ideal for social and corporate occasions, as well as vast outdoor reception areas overlooking the mansion's Gilded Age gardens. The property offers 25,000 square feet of event and meeting space, with 27 dedicated conference rooms accommodating from 10 to 280 guests, advanced meeting technology, an executive business center and conference concierge services.  Wireless Internet access is available throughout.  Also provided are complete fitness and recreational facilities, including a sauna, steam and massage rooms, indoor swimming pool and whirlpool, garden swimming pool, racquetball courts, bowling alley, lighted tennis courts, jogging trail and a sports field.  Golf is available nearby.  Ideal for executive retreats, corporate meetings and social gathering, the Glen Cove Mansion Hotel and Conference Center is masterfully designed to integrate gracious accommodations, superb cuisine and attentive service with contemporary comforts and the latest technology.  For more information on the Glen Cove Mansion Hotel and Conference Center, visit Benchmark Hospitality International manages the property.

About Benchmark Hospitality International
Benchmark Hospitality International, an independent hospitality management company based in The Woodlands (Houston), Texas, operates resorts, conference centers and hotels both domestically and internationally.  For locations of Benchmark Hospitality properties and for additional information, visit Benchmark's Website at


Benchmark Hospitality International
The Woodlands (Houston), Texas

Ken Ellens
Ken Ellens Communications 
201-758-2864 / 201-758-2865-Fax

Also See: Benchmark's Brendan Slaven, Executive Chef at Glen Cove Mansion Hotel and Conference Center, Wins National Copper Skillet Culinary Competition / February 2006
Three Benchmark Hospitality Chefs Preparing Holiday Dinner at James Beard House in New York / November 2005


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