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Award-Winning Chef Stephan Pyles Joins Gaylord Opryland Texas as Consulting Concept Chef for Hotel Restaurant.

Business Editors

GRAPEVINE, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 9, 2003

Gaylord Opryland Texas Resort & Convention Center (NYSE:GET) announced today that Texas' most celebrated chef, Stephan Pyles, will design a restaurant concept for the world-class hotel. Pyles' efforts will focus on creating International Latin dishes for one of the resort's signature restaurants. The Gaylord Hotels Resort, which upon completion will have 1,511 rooms and 400,000 square feet of meeting, convention, and pre-function space, is on schedule to open in April 2004.

Pyles, who has a long resume of accomplishments in a variety of fields and endeavors, said he is excited to be involved with Gaylord Opryland Texas as he re-invents himself as a culinary expert in International Latin cuisine.

"I am delighted to have the opportunity to partner with Gaylord Opryland Texas and to introduce the finest Nuevo Latino cuisine in this region," Pyles said. "The unique menu I am planning for this restaurant will delight the guests of Gaylord Opryland Texas for many years to come." Gaylord Opryland Texas is a destination resort for business travelers, conventioneers and vacationers throughout the world. Celebrating all things Texan, the hotel will accommodate guests in any of three distinct areas emphasizing cultural motifs, including the Lone Star, Hill Country and Riverwalk atriums. In its own way, each atrium will emphasize the proud heritage of Texas while accommodating and entertaining its guests and offering its state-of-the-art facilities for large meetings.

Gaylord Opryland Texas is the third resort and convention center in the Gaylord Hotels family. Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center in Nashville, Tenn., has been delivering world-class service and experiences for more than 25 years. Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center in Kissimmee, Fla., outside Orlando opened its doors in February 2002, and its restaurants have received broad acclaim.

"Without question, serving fine cuisine in a setting that captures the Florida experience has helped to set us apart in the Orlando area," said Colin Reed, chief executive officer of Gaylord Entertainment. "Our guests are telling us our outstanding food and guest service is a primary reason they will be coming back to stay with us at Gaylord Hotels. With Stephan's experience and expertise, Gaylord Opryland Texas will continue the tradition of serving the finest food at Gaylord Hotels."

After more than 25 years in Dallas' restaurant circuit, Stephan Pyles is known as the founding father of Southwestern Cuisine and creator of New Texas Cuisine receiving numerous awards and much acclaim in his native Texas and across the nation. A fifth-generation Texan, Pyles was the first from his state to be inducted into The James Beard Foundation's Who's Who of Food and Beverage in America, and Bon Appetit has credited him with "almost single-handedly changing the cooking scene in Texas." The New York Times has called Pyles "an absolute genius in the kitchen" while Texas Monthly Magazine named Pyles one of the "20 most impressive, intriguing and influential Texans for 1998."

As a consulting concept chef for Gaylord Opryland Texas, Chef Pyles will be responsible for developing the culinary direction of the highly anticipated Latin restaurant which will be located under a five-acre glass bubble in the main atrium of the hotel. Pyles plans to feature new interpretations of dishes of international acclaim from Latin cultures around the world, including Tapas, "the little dishes of Spain," and Ceviches from Mexico and South America. Pyles will also select the executive chef who will collaborate with him on new dishes and will execute the menus.

Pyles has proven himself a success time and time again in his career in which he has created 12 restaurants, written four books and starred in his own Emmy Award-winning PBS television series New Tastes from Texas. In 1994, Pyles opened Star Canyon, which made the lists of "best new restaurants" in Esquire, Bon Appetit, and Town and Country. It was named one of the top five new restaurants in America by the James Beard Foundation, and in March 1998 Playboy, polling 100 top food critics, named it one of America's top 25 restaurants. The September 1998 issue of Food and Wine listed Star Canyon as the "quintessential Dallas restaurant." In 1997, Pyles opened AquaKnox, a global seafood restaurant that was named best new restaurant by Food and Wine. Pyles is currently working on a new restaurant slated to open in Dallas in spring 2003.

While chef and owner of Routh Street Cafe and Baby Routh (1983-93) and Goodfellow's and Tejas in Minneapolis (1987-93), Pyles was the recipient of numerous awards, including the AAA Five Diamond Award; Nation's Restaurant News' Fine Dining Hall of Fame Award; Restaurants and Institutions' Ivy Award and the American Academy of Achievement Award. He was the inaugural recipient of The James Beard Foundation's award for Best Chef in America-Southwest in 1991 and has been given the Outstanding Restaurateur of the Year award by both the Minnesota Restaurant and Texas Restaurant associations. In 1998, he received the Humanitarian of the Year Award from Share Our Strength, America's largest hunger-relief organization.

He has cooked for dignitaries and celebrities from HRH Queen Elizabeth II and Mikhail Gorbachev to Mick Jagger and Sharon Stone. He has appeared around the world as guest celebrity chef and was one of five chefs worldwide invited to prepare dinner for Jimmy Carter's 70th birthday. Pyles is currently cuisine consultant for American Airlines, Texas Land and Cattle Steak House, and a host of other clients.

Pyles' first cookbook, The New Texas Cuisine, was named by Bon Appetit as one of the top 10 chef's cookbooks of the decade (1990s) and is now in its ninth printing. Pyles has also authored Tamales with McMillan and New Tastes from Texas, which is the companion piece to his Emmy-award winning nationally syndicated PBS television series by the same name. He also is host of a weekly cooking segment on the Texas ABC affiliate, which airs throughout the state. In addition, he has appeared frequently on such national programs as "Good Morning America" and "The Today Show." He has recently released his fourth book, Southwestern Vegetarian, published by Clarkson-Potter, a division of Random House.

About Gaylord Opryland Texas Resort & Convention Center

Gaylord Opryland Texas Resort & Convention Center is a property of Gaylord Entertainment, a leading hospitality and entertainment company based in Nashville, Tenn. Gaylord Entertainment owns and operates Gaylord Hotels branded properties including Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center and the Radisson Opryland Hotel in Nashville, and the Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center in Kissimmee, Fla. The company's entertainment brands include the Grand Ole Opry, the Ryman Auditorium, the General Jackson Showboat, the Springhouse Golf Club, the Wildhorse Saloon, and WSM-AM, WSM-FM, and WWTN Radio. Gaylord Entertainment's stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol GET. For more information about the company, visit www.gaylordentertainment.com.
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Publication:Business Wire
Geographic Code:1U7TX
Date:Jan 9, 2003
Words:1130
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