The participants chosen for this program boast profiles that include long professional careers and senior positions in their respective departments. By focusing on this new participant profile, the Food, Gastronomy and Wines Division of ICEX seeks to introduce Spanish gastronomy to professionals that are both leaders and decision-makers at their respective hotels.
It thereby serves as the first step towards sparking interest in Spanish gastronomy, and its ultimate goal is the introduction of Spanish products into the culinary offering and use of the selected hotels. This long-term project aims to establish a solid and fruitful relationship with the companies or hotel groups that have been invited to participate – all of which are located in strategic markets for the Spain's food and gastronomy sector, including Asia and America.
This Program responds to the exceptional level of international projection of the Spanish restaurant industry, considered a global reference for its creativity, capacity for innovation in culinary techniques, and synthesis with its roots. It was created to provide specialized training in Spanish gastronomy – both theoretical and practical – to foreign professionals, while simultaneously offering an integral look at the culture, language, history and new reality of 21st-century Spain.
As part of the Hospitality Training Certificate, participants must complete the Level 1: Spain's Pantry Certificate online course before travelling to Spain to be part of the Level 2.
At the end of the course successful candidates will be issued the Diploma: Hospitality Training Certificate.
The 2023 edition of this Training Program, there were 15 participants from the following chains and locations: Marriott & Aloft Hotel- Riyadh (Saudi Arabia); Hotel Grand Hyatt Sao Paulo (Brazil); InterContinental Toronto Centre (Canada); Hotel Hilton Corferias (Colombia); Taj Mahal Hotel, New Delhi (India); Hotel Al Manara, A Luxury Collection (Jordan); Shangri-La Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia); Hotel Hilton Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia); TRS Yucatán Hotel-Palladium-México (México); Grand Hyatt Muscat (Oman); Melia Lima (Peru); Crowne Plaza Warsaw (Poland); Melia Chiang Mai Hotel (Thailand); Trump Tower International Hotel (USA); MM Mega Markt, Hotel Bandido Saigon El Willy Group (Vietnam).
In the 2019 edition of this program, there were 23 participants from the following chains and locations: Meliá in London (England), Playa del Carmen (Mexico), Dubai (UAE), Hanoi (Vietnam) and Jakarta (Indonesia); NH in Berlin (Germany) and Bogota (Colombia); Raffles in Warsaw (Poland); Emiliano and Hilton in São Paulo (Brazil); Casa Santo Domingo in La Antigua (Guatemala); Marriott in Miami (US) and Suzhou (China); Palladium Hotel Group in Jamaica; InterContinental in Wellington (New Zealand); The Taj Mahal Hotel in New Delhi and Coco Sambala Resorts in Goa (India); the Sheraton in Hong Kong; MGM in Hainan, Mandarin Oriental in Guangzhou, Shangri-La in Shanghai (China); Central Food Thailand in Bangkok (Thailand); and Anantara in Phuket (Thailand).
• Generate passion for culture, gastronomy and Spanish products.
• Design and create quality gastronomy, based on the products presented during the course and the discovery trip.
• Identify and evaluate the principal characteristics of Spanish gastronomy, from its different regions, as well as the Mediterranean zone.
• Enable effective communication with both clients and other professionals about the value of the Spanish products and gastronomic culture in Spain.
• Evaluate, identify and design innovative processes for both service and customer service in the hotel industry.
Once the online module has been completed, the participants travel to Spain where the “On-site Spanish Gastronomy” begins. Participants undergo two weeks of intensive training in Hospitality Schools including the Basque Culinary Center (BCC) in San Sebastián. During these weeks participants dive into the Spanish gastronomic culture, including product presentations, innovation workshops and visits to industries and companies in the field, studying practical success stories as they go.
The “Discovery Tour of Spanish Gastronomy” take the participants to different regions of Spain. This intense, week-long journey will give them the opportunity to discover products in their natural surroundings, as well as get a first-hand look at the rich culinary culture of Spain.
The Program comes to an end with the celebration of the closing ceremony and presentation of diplomas at ICEX’s headquarters in Madrid. ICEX’s firm commitment to the international promotion of Spanish gastronomy not only serves as a strategic axis for the promotion of foods and wines from Spain, but also a fundamental pillar for the transmission of an image/country whose products are characterized by their diversity and quality; an image of a modern Spain for which our hotel chains serve as exceptional ambassadors – of great international prestige – as well as our chefs.