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Hospitality Consulting

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Marketing & Branding

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Sales Training & Consulting

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The People that We’ve Broken Bread with Around The World


Jason Atherton

“Thanks for choosing me” A great collaboration with Jason to launch his first venue in the UAE market at Intercontinental Dubai Marina"
Jason Atherton
The Social Company (Michelin Star Chef)

Sarah-Jane Grant

It was my pleasure to work with Duncan and he has proved his superior F&B knowledge on every occasion, His enthusiasm, initiative and leadership as a client and as a consultant has resulted in some extremely successful projects together”
Sarah-Jane Grant
Director - LXA (Intersect by Lexus - Dubai)

Greg Malouf

““Duncan is an astute Restaurant operator, food and beverage specialist and accomplished entrepreneurial leader who has greatly influenced and supported my work as a contemporary Middle Eastern chef’ He single- handedly steered a very important restaurant, Cle Dubai, bringing me to the city, to an operational stage unseen in Dubai. Opening night was like the opening night at an opera!
Greg Malouf
Michelin Star Chef - Middle Eastern Master

Diana Chan

"Duncan is a truly kind and approachable leader. He has extensive experience in the
hospitality industry spanning more than 2 decades in large hospitality groups
internationally. My experience with Duncan as part of my residency in MasterChef the
TV Experience restaurant Dubai was an unforgettable one.

Diana Chan
Master Chef Champion 2017 AUSTRALIA

Ozen Kazim

“The talented people who worked with Duncan on bringing MasterChef, the TV Experience to fruition, the project managers, photographers, former contestants of the show, and the brand licensing executives would not hesitate to work with Duncan again. Duncan's love for what he does, his ability to jump on a plane and demonstrate how such a TV inspired restaurant can come to life, made the whole endeavour feel risk and hassle free
Ozen Kazim
Head of Experiential, International Brand Licensing (MasterChef TV Experience - Endemol Shine Group)

Jennifer Pettinger

“From the outset Duncan was a valuable founding Member of The Global Restaurant Investment Forum. His connections and enthusiasm were crucial to the growth of the event. Duncan was a key figure in driving the development of Dubai’s restaurant scene to the next level”
Jennifer Pettinger
Founder – Global Restaurant Investment Forum

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The Cutting Edge is a hospitality consulting agency that adopts an all-encompassing approach to transform your business into an industry leader, equipped with the edge for success.

Our team of highly experienced hospitality leaders is spread across three divisions: CUTTING EDGE Hospitality Consulting, KATCH EDGE Marketing & Brand Development and SALES EDGE Sales Consulting & Training, providing your business with a diverse and invaluable range of expertise to help you lead the way.



With decades of local and international experience, Cutting Edge is far more than a team of trend followers – we are the trendsetters of the hospitality world, positioned at the forefront of leading industry projects around the globe. We maintain an inimitable passion for what we do, never settling for anything other than innovative. Every member of our team believes that the taste of success is down to a delicate blend of building strong relationships, adhering to briefs and budgets, sticking to deadlines, and transforming clients’ visions in realities.

Duncan Fraser-Smith

Duncan Fraser-Smith


  • Founder of The Cutting Edge Hospitality Agency, Dubai in 2013. Vice President of Food & Beverage of The First Group, Dubai’s leading developer of landmark properties and partnerships with the world’s leading hotel operators.
  • Creator of the world’s first ‘MasterChef, the TV Experience Restaurant’, opening in Dubai in 2019.
  • Voted No 1 Influencer ‘Caterer Middle East Power 50’ List in 2017 and 2018.
  • Award winner for ‘Leading F&B Director’ in Middle East Region by ‘Hotel & Catering News Middle East’ 2018
  • Founding Member of GRIF (Global Restaurant Investment Forum)
  • Contributing writer in ‘Caterer Middle East’ and ‘Hotelier Middle East’ Magazines.


Marlane Fraser-Smith

Marlane Fraser-Smith

Executive Director

  • Executive Director of The Cutting Edge Hospitality Agency, Dubai since 2017.
  • Creator of SALES EDGE, specialising in Hotel Sales & Marketing Consulting, Representation, Contracting & Rate Negotiation as well Training, Coaching and Mentoring for hotels and restaurants
  • Global Travel Director and creator  of the Hotels Worldwide division of ‘The Entertainer’ 2010-2017. Marketing hotel incentive 2for1 offers to Members.
  • National Partnership Marketing Manager Australia & NZ for Entertainment Publications 1999-2009. Pioneer of Travel, Leisure and Hotel Incentives program for the ‘Entertainment book’ Membership
  • Hotel Sales Management Roles Accor, IHG and Rydges Hotel groups



I’m Having Trouble Finding a Local

I’m Having Trouble Finding a Local

I am having trouble finding a Local? I have recently been wondering why, having lived in the Middle East for over 7 years now, I can’t find a good, regular local eatery that can cater to my needs 2-3 times a week within a 5km radius of my house. Don't get me wrong, I...

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P.O. Box 487177
Al Saaha Offices, Souk Al Bahar,
Burj Khalifa District, Dubai UAE

+971 4 363 9909
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