Chef Hemant Bhagwani
Amaya Restaurant Group, Toronto

Hemant Bhagwani has left footprints in quite a few places – born in India, attending culinary school in Switzerland, working at Indian restaurants in Australia and Dubai. 2ND PICBut when he finally found a place to put down his chef’s hat, it was in Toronto, Canada where Indian restaurants at the time were nothing more than standard buffets with greasy fare. After helping open several hotel restaurants in Dubai, Hemant was set on starting his own venture despite the warnings of friends of family about the high failure rate for new food establishments. Arriving in Canada without much money, he tried relentlessly to get a small business loan before finally securing funds for his first restaurant. Like many entrepreneurs, Hemant struggled with his first two ventures despite hard work and a brilliant vision before succeeding with Amaya. Founded in 2007, the Amaya Group of Restaurants has become a household name in Toronto today, bringing fresh, healthy, and quality Indian food in the form of formal restaurants, casual dining, food court kiosks, take-out establishments, and catering services.