Posted by Vicky on | August 22, 2012 | No Comments
Holidays are meant to be a time for relaxing and unwinding. However, as most Allergy Parents can agree going on holiday with a food allergic child can be at worst impossible, at best nerve-wrecking!
Traveling in Asia with a child who has food allergies and anaphylaxis (a life-threatening allergy) to tree nuts and peanuts, is a daunting prospect. Peanuts and tree nuts find their way into most local foods in Asia. Parents are often meet with a limited understanding of food allergies and all that they entail (cross-contamination, a sound knowledge of the food products and how/where they are produced etc). This can put off many Allergy Parents from travelling in Asia.
However, The Sheraton at Krabi has set the absolute gold-standard in food allergy awareness and safety. It is a hotel that has gone above and beyond all of my family’s expectations – they were simply put fantastic in the way they catered for our son.
How The Sheraton Krabi exceeded our expectations
Urs Lienhard, The Hotel Manager, explains, “As part of an international chain, we already follow very strict Food Safety and Hygiene standards which also stipulate how to cater for guests with special dietary requirements. In addition to our current procedures, we paid attention to the following: During pre-arrival we clarified as many questions as possible. We also selected one Chef (Francesco) and one Service Associate (Julie) as the only two team members allowed to cater for CJ. Further, we purchased new kitchen utensils and equipment as well as plates and cutlery. Another vital part prior to arrival was our ‘save-ingredients-list’ agreed and approved by CJ’s parents: Only ingredients on this list were used for preparing the meals and beverages. To raise awareness, we scheduled a food allergy refresher training with all Managers and F&B Associates.
During the stay, we ensured a steady communication flow between CJ’s parents and our team. All utensils used for CJ were washed and sanitized before and after every meal. So were the cooking stations and tables. We also used a dedicated fridge for all ingredients to avoid cross contamination. We also made sure that Julie and Francesco were available during the entire period of the stay. Finally, a debriefing was conducted focusing on opportunities for improvements and a discussion what went well.”
The Sheraton Krabi’s Top Tips for Allergy Parents
- Get in touch with the hotel as soon as possible so the hotel has ample time to get organized and clarify any possible questions or concerns.
- Schedule a get-together with the relevant hotel associates at arrival.
- Hotels might ask the same questions so consider to compile a FAQ document with answers.
- If the hotel has a designate Chef and/or Service Associate for you, it is advisable you communicate and order only with him/her.
In terms of a hotel that caters incredibly well to guests with food allergies, my family could not have asked for more. Chef Francesco sums up why our stay was such a safe one, “Once you have committed to take care of the guest, do not delegate any tasks”.
The food our son was provided with was safe, tasty and thoroughly enjoyed by him. Aside from the gorgeous setting, friendly staff and a great stay – this is why we will be going back to the Sheraton Krabi.
To all of the staff who helped make our holiday such a relaxing and safe holiday – Thank You!