Laurens van der Heijden – Director of Food & Beverage at Alila...

Laurens van der Heijden – Director of Food & Beverage at Alila Seminyak

Laurens van der Heijden

E: What are your responsibilities?

A: My role at Alila Seminyak is first and foremost to create everlasting memories for both our guests and the team I now call my family. I am very fortunate and blessed to call Bali and Alila Seminyak my home, and I strive to create a comfortable environment with everyone that I meet on a daily basis.

E: What makes a typical day?

A: I typically start my day at Seasalt with my amazing breakfast team welcoming our guests and ensuring they kick off their day with a bountiful breakfast and a freshly brewed coffee with the sounds of the waves on the horizon. Throughout the day, I meet guests from all different backgrounds and love to spend time with my F&B team to learn more about their backgrounds and develop the bond within the team.

E: Who has been the most influential figure in your career to date?

A: I have been very fortunate to have worked in very beautiful and exciting locations over the past few years, and along the way, I have been blessed to have many great mentors. My former director in Shanghai, whom I called Mr. Kumar has kept a strong influence on my career as he taught me to value my team over anything, and I have always kept that dear to my heart wherever I have worked.

E: Team player or team leader?

A: I believe that to be a good leader, one must first be a great team player. The moments I value the most have always been working on the floor with my team, whether it’s clearing dishes or working early mornings until late evenings. Those are the times you really get to know each other and ultimately create the bond needed to work toward a common goal.

E: Name one thing that is special about your restaurant?

A: It honestly might sound cheesy, but the most special part of Seasalt is the people that work there. Whether it’s the service team bringing smiles to everyone that enters, the chefs creating magic, or the stewards and housekeepers that work tirelessly to ensure everything is perfectly cleaned and organised, I love seeing their excitement every day.

E: What is the most important trait to have in your work?

A: Honesty, compassion and respect are the three values I think are the most important, and I try to live by them wherever I work.

E: What is the most memorable moment of your career?

A: During my time working in Phnom Penh, I have a vivid memory of the day I was happy to send one of my team members to an appreciation event at our sister property in Hong Kong. This was the first time she had ever left the city, flown on an aeroplane, or experienced any city outside of Phnom Penh. Welcoming her back at the airport with the entire restaurant team and seeing her beaming smile was an unforgettable moment that I will always cherish.

E: Dead or alive, who would you like to take out to dinner?

A: I would take my mother out for dinner; she has always been there to support me throughout all my experiences and is someone I will always look up to. 

Exquisite Taste Volume 40

Alila Seminyak

Jalan Taman Ganesha No. 9, Petitenget

Bali 80361, Indonesia

T: (+62) 3613021888



IG: @alilaseminyak