With the unforeseen disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, key experts from the F&B and hotel sectors of Enderun Colleges discuss the best practices and viable solutions to recovery

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Chef Thomas Wenger
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Ms. Bel Castro

Enderun Colleges’ Assistant Dean Bel Castro and Enderun Hotels’ Senior Vice President Thomas Wenger are two of the most sought-after professionals in the hospitality industry. Both have recently graced various online conferences, panel discussions, and news broadcasts that tackle issues on the action plans to be taken and the future of food and hospitality business in the country.

During the webinar conducted by Servo IT Solutions entitled, React, Respond, Recover: The Philippines, Chef Thomas discusses short-term measures hoteliers can take to protect their businesses. He explains, “We need to reevaluate all the processes we have throughout the hotel. There are two things to look at: the process to change in order to make room for the new normal to accommodate those hygiene standards. On the other side, we also have that process which we can streamline a little bit to make us better equipped to deal with a slow recovery.

Specifically, Chef Thomas aims to eliminate the stigma from people that hinder them to travel and visit hotels. It is necessary that the hospitality industry is capable of presenting and implementing stricter health and sanitation parameters in order for guests to be more confident and trustworthy of hotel properties.

In an interview with David Celdran for ANC Conversations, similarly, Chef Thomas stresses out the importance of sanitizing all hotel facilities and amenities so that guests become more confident and secured. Ms. Bel also partakes in the interview discussion and significantly points out the short-term changes and the new approaches for restaurants towards an immediate future which have to be built with trust and transparency.

In addition, Ms. Bel was one of the key F&B leaders on Metro Style’s online panel discussion on The Future of Food: What’s Our Game Plan? which serves as a shared platform of ideas that address how restaurants can bounce back from the effects of the global pandemic.

According to Ms. Bel, “Everybody wants to talk about that there’s going to be a new normal. But what does the new normal mean? It will mean that we will have new processes and procedures.There’s a lot of movement we have before that we have to find a way to change the way it moves: movement of cash, movement of people, and movement of product. In the school system, we are incubating a lot of these ideas, and there’s always a silver lining. I think when we come out of this we’re going to be graduating the strongest batch of hospitality students you’ve ever seen because we’ve been through this battle.”

Furthermore Ms. Bel explains, “It’s not a question anymore when we will open. I think now, we have to focus on ‘how do we open?’. This is a good time to practice and to stress test [our] systems for this new normal and instead of waiting for [the new normal], I think we have to define and create what will be our new norms”.

Catch the ANC Conversations interview of David Celdran with Ms. Bel Castro and Chef Thomas Wenger here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UyNgsxya-U0&feature=youtu.be.

You can also watch Ms. Bel on Metro Style’s The Future of Food: What’s Our Game Plan through this link: https://metro.style/culture/events/where-to-watch-the-future-of-food/24808.

Chef Thomas’ participation on the online panel discussion hosted by Servo IT Solutions can be accessed here: https://siteminder-1.wistia.com/medias/c9hix9e3rq.