Jessica Préalpato and Thomas Pesquet: Representing France at Expo 2020 Dubai

Life of the Pavilion
A year ahead of France Day at the World Expo, the French Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai UAE is proud to reveal the names of its two ambassadors: Jessica Préalpato, pastry chef, and Thomas Pesquet, French astronaut with the ESA.
These two ambassadors of the French Pavilion fully embody its values of boldness and French art de vivre.
Parrain Marraine

 The support that Jessica Préalpato and Thomas Pesquet are providing to the French Pavilion at the Expo 2020 Dubai illustrates our capacity for technological innovation, as well as the French art de vivre and all its expertise. These two incredible personalities complement each other in how they represent the wealth of our offering in the French Pavilion. 

Erik Linquier, Commissioner General for the French Pavilion and President of Cofrex

The French Pavilion: a powerful lever for French attractiveness


France’s presence at Expo 2020 Dubai is an essential opportunity for creating new economic development, accelerating its attractiveness as a country, and officially launching new innovative and sustainable projects.

Through the theme “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future”, Expo 2020 Dubai offers France the opportunity to express the way it sees ecological and inclusive transition by demonstrating how its commitment to climate and environmental protection on an international scale can also be a lever for business development, by means of concrete solutions and using digital as a key accelerator.

Based in the “Mobility” area, France will share its vision of mobility for the future, which is more environmentally-friendly and designed to help all its citizens. It will also present its plans for designing and building landscapes that are connected and suited to everyone’s needs.

The representatives of the French Pavilion will embody the country’s vision for Expo 2020 Dubai, and their involvement with the project and the contribution of their expertise will enable France to shine on the international stage. Jessica Préalpato, who was named the World’s Best Pastry Chef in 2019 by the World’s 50 Best Restaurant Awards, and Thomas Pesquet, French astronaut with the ESA, stood out through their commitments to humanity, each in their own field.

Jessica Préalpato: a chef who is committed to better living and environmental protection

Jessica Préalpato is the Pastry Chef at the Alain Ducasse restaurant in the Plaza Athénée. Under the stewardship of Alain Ducasse and alongside the chef Romain Meder, she has been redefining the whole concept of pâtisserie at the restaurant since 2015.

Her approach – known as desseralité – is nature-oriented and based entirely on producers’ seasonal offerings. This led to her being voted “World’s Best Pastry Chef” at the World’s 50 Best Restaurant Awards in 2019. Through her innovative approach to pastry, she promotes short food supply chains and the circular economy, which benefit small producers and showcase the wealth of local produce.

 Being a part of the French Pavilion adventure is an opportunity for me to represent the culinary daring that has become an important part of our cultural heritage. As I’m committed to healthier and more environmentally friendly food, I am proud to promote the French ‘art de vivre’ on the international stage. 

Jessica Préalpato, ambassador for the French Pavilion and Pastry Chef at the Alain Ducasse restaurant in the Plaza Athénée

Thomas Pesquet: a commitment to science and innovation

As part of the Proxima mission, Thomas Pesquet lived and worked on board the International Space Station from November 2016 to June 2017. Spurred on by the belief that our future on Earth depends on a better knowledge of space, he sought to illustrate this vision and raise awareness for all generations by sharing the photographs he took of the Earth. His next flight into orbit around the blue planet is scheduled for summer 2021.
He is also promoting careers in science among the young and very youngest generations, who can be sources of innovation and bring new breakthrough ideas.

 The French Pavilion and this World Expo project are a great match for the social and environmental challenges our generation is facing, and these issues have always been close to my heart. They are the same values that I would like to convey through my involvement with the French Pavilion. 

Thomas Pesquet, representative of the French Pavilion and French ESA astronaut

2020, an unmissable event for France 

The concept for the Pavilion was unveiled in Paris during March 2019 and the foundation stone laid at the Expo site in Dubai on May 2, 2019 by Elisabeth Borne, the Minister for Ecological and Inclusive Transition. The French Pavilion is now under construction and slated to open its doors for the World Expo on October 20, 2020. Showcasing the country’s attractiveness for both tourists and businesses, the Pavilion will combine unique architecture, immersive staging and design that respects environmental issues, while committing to sustainability by being fully portable and reusable after the Exhibition. So far, the French Pavilion is one of the most advanced at the Expo 2020 Dubai site in terms of construction and all of its deadlines have been met.

Now Brune Poirson, Secretary of State to the Minister for Ecological and Inclusive Transition has announced the names of the representatives, the Pavilion will unveil the first element in phase of its program during the spring of 2020 and provide details about the five temporary exhibitions for the French Pavilion, as well as information about the permanent exhibition.