MGM National Harbor: Celebrity chefs bring new dining concepts to the Capital Region

A little bit of Vegas (okay, a big bit) is setting up residence in the Mid-Atlantic region. The glitz and glamour of MGM will soon be open at National Harbor, Maryland, just outside of Washington, D.C. The MGM National Harbor is scheduled to open in late 2016 and will feature luxury amenities, a casino and an exciting line-up of restaurants and dining concepts from the likes of Andrés, Samuelsson and Voltaggio (both of them).

By partnering with these celebrity chefs, the MGM National will become an East Coast culinary destination. New concepts, exclusive to the resort, will pay tribute to the culture and landscape of the region while showcasing each chef’s unique culinary personality.

From the press release …

“In recent years, the Capital Region has become a thriving food destination with many of the best chefs in the world contributing to our booming restaurant scene,” said MGM National Harbor General Manager Bill Boasberg. “We have selected incredible talent to create an unparalleled dining experience at our resort and we are excited to welcome these new concepts and chefs into our company’s award-winning culinary portfolio.”

Jose Andres Photo: MGM National Harbor

José Andrés
Photo: MGM National Harbor

Chef José Andrés

Drawing inspiration from the Chesapeake Bay, Chef José Andrés brings his first seafood dining concept to the MGM National, which overlooks the Potomac River. Aptly named Fish by José Andrés, the menu features fresh seafood and local ingredients. There will be cocktail, sushi and tempura bars to give guests a variety of dining options and experiences. Also planned are interactive kitchen stations, communal tables and main dining room seating.

“I’m thrilled to be announcing my first seafood restaurant in what will be the iconic MGM National Harbor,” said Chef Andrés. “There are so many stories to be told through the astonishing bounty of the sea.”

Well-known for his eclectic cuisine, Andrés was a pioneer in bringing the concept of Spanish tapas to the United States. He operates dining destinations in Washington, D.C., Miami, Las Vegas, Beverly Hills, Los Angeles and Mexico City. In addition to receiving “Outstanding Chef” by the James Beard Foundation, Chef Andrés has been named one of Time’s “100 Most Influential People,” “Chef of the Year” by Bon Appetit and “Hot Restaurateur” by Conde Nast Traveler.

Marcus Samuelsson Photo: MGM National Harbor

Marcus Samuelsson
Photo: MGM National Harbor

Chef Marcus Samuelsson

James Beard Award-winning chef Marcus Samuelsson brings Marcus to the MGM National. He puts his unique twist on a menu that showcases the coastal flavors of the region. The extensive wine list, craft beer selections, signature cocktails and shareable punch bowls will undoubtedly make Marcus the main spot for after (or before) dinner drinks.

“I’m super excited to be partnering with MGM on the opening of this hotel in National Harbor. It is a real privilege to be a part of such a great collection of chefs including Jose, Michael and Bryan,” said Samuelsson.

Along with winning season two of “Top Chef Masters,” Samuelsson’s career highlights include being the youngest recipient of a three-star review by The New York Times, cooking the State Dinner for President Barack Obama and winning a James Beard Foundation award for “Best Chef: New York City.”

Samuelsson operates the Red Rooster Harlem and the Streetbird Rotisserie in Harlem, Marcus’ at the Hamilton Princes in Bermuda, Norda in Sweden and Marc Burger in Chicago as well as several others around the world.

Samuelsson’s cookbooks include “Marcus Off Duty: The Recipes I Cook at Home” and “The Soul of a New Cuisine.” His upcoming cookbook is entitled “The Red Rooster Cookbook: The Story of Food and Hustle in Harlem.”

Chefs Bryan and Michael Voltaggio

Brothers Bryan and Michael Voltaggio have partnered for the first time to open the contemporary Voltagio Brothers Steak House at MGM National. The menu will highlight the specialties of the region while drawing upon their home state of Maryland.

“Micheal and I have always talked about collaborating. Despite having as many differences as we do similarities, we have been waiting to tel the story of the two of us as chefs through one menu.” Said Bryan Voltaggio. “It’s fitting that we are bringing our first kitchen together in our home state of Maryland and we are excited to be a part of the evolution of the new Potomac waterfront.”

Bryan Voltaggio Photo: MGM National Harbor

Bryan Voltaggio
Photo: MGM National Harbor

Based in the Mid-Atlantic region, Bryan Voltaggio is chef and owner of VOLT, Range, Aggio, Lunchbox and Family Meal. Michael Voltaggio is based on the other coast in Los Angeles where he operates ink. (named Best New Restaurant in America by GQ when it originally opened) and the sandwich concept of ink.sack.

Bryan and Michael appeared on season six of Bravo’s “Top Chef,” which Michael went on to win. Bryan later appeared on “Top Chef Masters.” They have both been featured on programs on the Cooking Channel and Food Network.

Michael Voltaggio Photo: MGM National Harbor

Michael Voltaggio
Photo: MGM National Harbor

Michael Voltaggio …

“We couldn’t have asked for a better partner to bring us together in our home town. By creating a world class experience where guests can eat, sleep and play, MGM National Harbor is setting the stage for an exciting family reunion.”

The MGM National Harbor

The MGM National Harbor is the newest addition to the MGM Resorts family. Located within close proximity to Washington, D.C., the resort offers stunning views of the Potomac River and is just down the street from the shopping and entertainment of National Harbor, home to the Gaylord National and the Capital Wheel.

The 24-story resort has 308 rooms and features premier amenities such as a world-class spa and salon, fitness center, a rooftop pool, an entertainment theater with seating for up to 3,000, high-end retail, 27,000 square feet of meeting space and a casino with more than 125,000 square feet of space for slots, table games and poker.

I’m really looking forward to visiting the new MGM National Harbor and checking out some of the unique dining concepts. How about you?

Read all about the rest of the unique fine dining and casual restaurants slated to open at the MGM National Harbor right here.


  1. […] 24-story resort has 308 rooms and features premier amenities such as a world-class spa and salon, celebrity chef-driven dining, fitness center, a rooftop pool, high-end retail, 27,000 square feet of meeting space and a casino […]

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