Chef Sean Judd, whose CV includes Chin Chin and Claremont Tonic, will take charge of the stove at the St. Hotel, due to open in early October.
Behind its heritage-listed facade, St Kilda's former Saint Hotel has undergone a significant refurbishment under a team that includes Paul Nguyen and Simon Blanchard, co-owners of Prahran Vietnamese diners Hanoi Hannah and Saigon Sally.
Blanchard contacted Judd more than 12 months ago, asking him to front the kitchen.
''It's a complete rebuild, so has taken a while to complete,'' says Judd, whose menu will centre around Thai food. Judd also plans to include ''classic pub dishes like burgers and a good steak''.
There are plans for the hotel, at 54 Fitzroy Street, to also house a supper club and social club.