After opening Montreal-style steakhouse Mount Royal and rooftop lounge Spaceman at the Hyatt Centric hotel in Buckhead four months ago, chef Hugh Acheson is no longer affiliated with either restaurant.
On Wednesday afternoon, a future patron of Mount Royal alerted Eater to a “change in management” after their reservation for later this week was canceled by the hotel. Another patron provided a voicemail recording from Mount Royal stating that the restaurant is undergoing some “exciting changes” and therefore is closing temporarily for dinner. Their reservation was slated for April 23.
“We can confirm that Hugh is no longer a part of this project at the Hyatt and that Mount Royal and Spaceman should continue to operate as they have been,” a spokesperson for Acheson says when reached for comment. The spokesperson declined to elaborate further on the reason for the split, saying only that the chef is “looking forward to working on future restaurant projects.”
A source with knowledge of the situation indicates the decision to part ways with the hotel came down to “creative differences” between Acheson and hotel management.
With Acheson’s departure from the restaurants, it appears chef Sam Herndon (head of Acheson’s culinary team) is also no longer affiliated with Mount Royal and Spaceman.
“Mount Royal is open for breakfast 7 days a week and we look forward to welcoming guests back in for dinner soon,” Hyatt Centric Buckhead general manager Kristi Cotten says, who declined to provide further details on whether the hotel plans to rebrand the restaurants.
Spaceman remains open on the 15th floor of the hotel for cocktails and food, Thursday through Sunday evenings starting at 5 p.m.
Mount Royal was particularly close to Acheson’s heart. The Canadian-born chef called the steakhouse an ode to his hometown of Ottawa and neighboring city of Montreal. The menu centers on prime cuts of steak paired with French-Canadian dishes like Lyonnaise salad, tourtiere (meat pies), and sour pickles.
In early March, Acheson and Herndon traveled to Romania and Poland for two weeks to assist in coordinating food distribution efforts with World Central Kitchen (WCK) to help feed refugees fleeing from the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
“I can help cook, expedite, and triage a very complex situation,” Acheson told Eater at the time. “I worry about literally half a million people wandering in the cold wondering when they will ever sleep in their beds at home again . . . We can all do things.”
Update, April 13, 6:30 p.m.: This story has been updated with comments from representatives of Hyatt Centric hotel in Buckhead.