Michael Caines was born in Exeter in 1969 and was adopted by Patricia and Peter Caines, one of six children. He attended Exeter Catering College where he was awarded ‘Student of the Year’ in 1987.
From 1987 to 1989 he worked at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane in London, followed by a 3 years working under his mentor Raymond Blanc at Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons in Oxfordshire. He then moved to France to study under Bernard Loiseau in Saulieu and Joël Robuchon in Paris.
He became the Head Chef at Gidleigh Park in 1994 but he lost his full right arm in a car accident soon afterwards.
In 1999, Gidleigh Park was awarded a second Michelin Star, and in 2001 Caines won Chef of the Year at The Catey Awards. Caines departed Gidleigh Park in January 2016 and was replaced by Michelin-starred chef, Michael Wignall.
Michael Caines Restaurants Ltd was founded in 1999 and the Michael Caines Restaurant opened at the Bristol Marriott Royal in July 2003. However, a meeting with Andrew Brownsword in early 2000 resulted in a partnership and the purchase of the Royal Clarence Hotel, Exeter in October 2000. In 2017 the hotel suffered a devastating fire and is currently being rebuilt by Andrew Brownsword.
Together they developed the ABode Hotels concept. Currently there are 5 hotels in ABode Hotels: Exeter, Canterbury, Glasgow,[Manchester, and Chester. Caines was also executive chef for The Bath Priory from 2009 until 2017, a position now held by Michael Nizzero. He was appointed Director of Food & Beverage for Andrew Brownsword Hotels in 2012, a role he held until July 2014.
Caines became involved in catering for the Williams Formula 1 team in 2013 and, as of the 2017 Grand Prix season, is seen regularly in Williams attire in the paddock.
Caines and John Burton Race represented the Southwest of England in the BBC television series Great British Menu in 2006. Caines beat the Dartmouth based chef to go on to the final round.
Caines was created a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) on 17 June 2006.
Caines launched The Michael Caines Academy in 2011 at Exeter College.
In 2016, Caines resigned from Gidleigh Park and ABode Hotels to pursue other business interests.
In 2017, Caines opened Lympstone Manor a luxury boutique hotel and restaurant in Exeter, Devon which he describes as "the realisation of a dream, my vision of country house hospitality for the 21st Century". He also plans to establish a vineyard in the estate to produce a house champagne-method sparkling wine.
Michael Caines MBE