Jeremie Cruz was born and raised on Puerto Rico and was interested in cooking since a child. At 17, he started working at a bake shop in Ceiba, Puerto Rico and at 18, started as a prep cook at Isabela’s Restaurant in the El Conquistador Hotel. Within two months he was promoted to commis and eight months after that, promoted to culinary management trainee (CMT), which allowed him a scholarship to study advanced courses at the Culinary Institute in New York.
Returning to Puerto Rico and the El Conquistador, he was the sous chef there when Great Chefs showed up in 1997, and they taped him for their Great Chefs of the Caribbean series as well as their Great Chefs of the World series. He moved to the Westin Rio Mar as executive chef shortly thereafter for a year, before accepting the executive chef position at the Villa Montana Beach Resort 11 years ago in 2005, and he remains there today.