Gerard Jean-Marie Partoens was born in Antwerp, Belgium and began his training in several high quality pastry shops under various famous chefs including Pierre Hermé of Fauchon. His first job was head pâtissier at the exclusive Bruynseels Pâtisserie in St. Niklaas, Belgium. In the spring of 1980 he created a one-of-a-kind birthday cake for the Crown Prince of Belgium.
He then came to the United States to work at various hotels like the La Paloma in Tucson, Arizona and the Scottsdale Princess Hotel, and then to the Ritz-Carlton Mauna Lani in Hawaii as executive pastry chef under Great Chef Phillip Padovani. In 1993 Chef Partoens was named executive pastry chef at the Peabody Orlando Hotel in Florida. A year later, the Great Chefs television crew arrived to tape him there for the Discovery Channel’s Great Chefs of America series.
He left Florida in 1995 to go out west again as executive pastry chef, first to the La Paloma Resort; then the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs; Grand Sierrra Resort in Reno; and Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas. In 2007, he joined Whole Foods in Rockville, Maryland as Regional Bakery Coordinator, and seven years later in 2014, Chef Partoens became Director of Bakery for Roche Brothers, Inc. in Boston, where he remains today.