Philippe Massoud

ilili Restaurant

CEO and Chef, Philippe Massoud’s mission is simple: revive an ancient cuisine, re-invent it, and bring the concept to a public who, for the most part, has never experienced it as it should be.

The worsening political situation in Beirut prompted his parents to send him to the United States in 1985 to attend high school. After high school, he enrolled in Cornell University’s School of Hotel Management and finished his Hotel, Resort and Restaurant Development degree at the Rochester Institute of Technology.

In 2007 Philippe opened ilili, a 300-seat restaurant in New York City’s then struggling Flatiron District. Some considered his gamble on the area risky, but Philippe had faith in the neighborhood and in the power of his cuisine to draw a crowd. In 2013 Philippe opened ilili Box, a pop fast casual concept inspired by ilili’s success. ilili Box won Best NYC Falafel in 2014, and is the third successful brand launched by Philippe.

In the more than eight years since opening, ilili’s mezza style dining has proven to be a success, drawing in crowds night after night and playing a major part in the rebirth of the Flatiron as a foodie destination. As the restaurant's executive chef, CEO and owner, Philippe is responsible for the entire business, while he oversees operations with his brother/co-owner, Alexander.

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