Celebrity chefs host surprise Valentine’s date for patient

Anthony and Daniella on their Valentine’s date in a transformed Westmead Hospital room. Photo by Studio Luxe – Owned and operated by Romel Kouyan. (Instagram: @luxeportraiture)

Loving husband Anthony Takchi may have outdone any Valentine’s gesture in the history of Valentine’s Day.

As his 29-year-old wife Daniella battles an aggressive form of cancer, Anthony teamed up with Westmead Hospital staff to organise a surprise lunch date in hospital to make his wife’s day.

It wasn’t just any lunch though – it was made on site and personally served with love by celebrity chefs Ibby and Romel from Channel 7’s My Kitchen Rules (MKR).

The three-course-meal, two of which received 10/10 scores from MKR judges Pete and Manu, was served in a hospital room in the medical oncology ward.

Daniella is a long-time MKR fan. Photo by Studio Luxe – Owned and operated by Romel Kouyan. (Instagram: @luxeportraiture)

Anthony worked with hospital staff to transform the room into a very romantic setting complete with candles, flowers and rose petals.

Daniella was overwhelmed with happiness when she saw her husband in the decorated room.

Daniella had no idea her husband set up a romantic date for her in hospital.
Photo by Studio Luxe – Owned and operated by Romel Kouyan. (Instagram: @luxeportraiture)

Hospital staff were in tears as they watched Anthony embrace and kiss his wife as she entered the room in a wheelchair.

Daniella’s excitement heightened even more when Ibby and Romel from MKR appeared with news that they had cooked her a surprise meal.

Daniella’s reaction when the MKR contestants walked in.

“Oh my gosh, I love you guys,” Daniella said

“I’m so touched by this, thank you so much.

“This is beautiful, thank you everyone.”

Anthony praised his wife’s bravery and said she deserved every bit of the surprise, and more.

“Daniella was diagnosed with cancer a month after we got married in October 2016,” Anthony said.

“After various treatments, surgery and getting the all clear, we fell pregnant.

“Sadly the cancer returned. Daniella stopped her treatment while she was pregnant until our son Tobias was born six weeks ago.

“Radiation treatment started again this week.

“Daniella will fight as long as she can. As long as she is happy and enjoying herself, that’s the goal.”

The entree that scored 10/10 by Pete and Manu: lamb shawarma. Photo by Studio Luxe – Owner and operated by Romel Kouyan. (Instagram: @luxeportraiture)

MKR contestants Ibby and Romel were touched by the experience, describing the event as one of the best parts of their MKR journey.

“We got a phone call about a patient named Daniella who loves MKR… so we wanted to make it very special,” Romel said.

Celebrity MKR chefs Ibby and Romel with dessert: a white chocolate sahlab muhalabieh (milk pudding). This dish received full marks from MKR judges Pete and Manu.

Ibby said it was so touching to see Daniella happy.

“She looked twice at us and just jumped,” Ibby said.

“It was a really beautiful day.”

Emotions were heightened once again as Anthony surprised Daniella with an unexpected appearance of their son Tobias.

The family spent some private moments together before receiving their third course – dessert.

Anthony, Daniella and their son Tobias.
Photo by Studio Luxe – Owned and operated by Romel Kouyan. (Instagram: @luxeportraiture)

After the MKR contestants received their meal scores from Daniella (which was 10 out of 10 for all three courses), Anthony asked his wife for a score for his efforts.

“Oh… you… you are a 100 out of 10… a million actually!”


Several hospital staff and vendors were involved in the delivery of this special Valentine’s Day event. Thank you to everyone who made today possible:

  • MKR contestants Ibby and Romel (Instagram: @ibbyromelau)
  • Channel 7 publicity
  • 7 News Sydney
  • Zouki Westmead
  • Westmead Hospital Florist
  • Photos by Studio Luxe – Owner and operated by Romel Kouyan. (Instagram: @luxeportraiture)
  • Medical Oncology nursing unit manager Narelle Driver
  • Western Sydney Local Health District Corporate Communications team