Giving young talent the opportunity to flourish

Oetker Collection’s newest hotel, Palácio Tangará, opened in 2017 just outside of central São Paulo, nestled peacefully in the verdant Burle Marx Park. The hotel boasts 141 spacious guest rooms – including 59 suites – and features a Michelin-starred restaurant, two 25m swimming pools and a spa.

Since opening, Palácio Tangará has engaged in a number of initiatives to support the local community of São Paulo through our Corporate Social Responsibility commitment. One of the most exciting among these is the Apprentice Program. This program offers a group of twelve students from the Paraisópolis favela, who have undergone professional training at CAMP NGO, the opportunity to complete their training with a 1.5-year apprenticeship within the hotel’s various departments. The talented apprentices fill roles in the kitchen, in pastry making, alongside the housekeeping staff, in the finance office, at reception and in the spa. We caught up with a few cooking apprentices to ask them how they are finding the experience.

Gabriela Castro joined the Apprentice Program in March 2018. She always knew she wanted to cook, but never imagined what she would discover on the job.

“Cooking is something that goes back to my grandmother. The history of each dish is very interesting and engaging. I love being a part of the process from the initial conception through to the finished dish. At Palácio Tangará, I have been introduced to ingredients that I had never seen, tasted or even heard of before.”

Indeed, the menu at Tangará Jean-Georges reaches far beyond the typical Brazilian fare, offering a panoramic view into the world of fine cuisine for this young Paulistana.

Thamiris Silva was selected last September to join the pastry team.

“I’m in love with pastry making. What I enjoy most about this experience is gaining confidence in my work. My colleagues trust me to get things done and this is very helpful for my learning.”

The apprenticeship encourages a high degree of autonomy and truly prepares each participant with the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in their first job.

“Love is the word,” says Anna Maria Silva about her apprenticeship in the hotel’s banquet kitchen. “I love cooking and I feel very happy when I cook. What I enjoy the most is the care paid to the employees and the attention provided to each of us.”

Gabriela, Thamiris and Anna Maria inspire us with their palpable passion, creativity, youthful energy and professionalism. Oetker Collection is grateful for the chance to engage with the São Paulo youth through the Apprentice Program, and we look forward to welcoming more ambitious apprentices to learn about the business of hospitality.

Find out more about the Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives at Palació Tangará here.

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