Sheila Gallant-Halloran

Made-to-measure travel; please, go away! :-)

Food Allergies? Beaches will treat you right!

Earlier this week, I wrote a post about Disney being able to handle food allergies right, and take away the cares of parents who have to contend with allergies.  Having specialized in Disney vacations for years, my clients’ concerns have ranged from lactose intolerance to severe milk allergies (yes, it exists) to gluten to kiwi to peanut and every other kind of allergy. I have always taken comfort sending people to Disney because I know and trust their system for dealing with allergies. This week, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the Beaches chain is similarly equipped to deal with food allergies.

As a new specialist with the Beaches brand, I’m growing my knowledge of how they can respond to situations. And I got to see how they treated food allergies up close this week. I was thrilled with the response. (And families who must constantly guard against these issues will be thrilled to know that their vacation options are widening.)

My clients have a young family, and their youngest is anaphylaxic to Sesame and Tree Nuts. They have never vacationed as a family because of their need to be vigilant, and to be constantly monitoring their daughter’s exposure. When we were choosing a vacation spot for them, Disney certainly made the short list, but they were intrigued more by Beaches Turks and Caicos. The thought of a luxurious Caribbean vacation with fun, sun, surf, and a multitude of  family activities just spoke to them. I’ve sold Beaches with confidence to many families, but I’d never had to enquire about their treatment of allergies before. And, in this client’s case, the allergy was severe – there couldn’t be any margin for error.

I got some initial assurances from the Beaches Special Services team that they indeed could handle such situations. That offered some comfort, for sure, but I wanted to get additional info for the family.

You can imagine how much worry was alleviated by the following email sent from the Beaches T&C executive chef to my clients.

It will be my pleasure to be of assistance, firstly we will do our very best to ensure you guys have a fantastic vacation and enjoy all your food all over the resort,

We run a very successful food programme where I ask you to let me know your chosen restaurant one meal period in advance with the order for [xxx]’s chosen dietary restricted food, we simply remove the restriction and prepare and cook the food to suit her requirements, time is very important to me as I require the necessary time to prepare and cook safely and avoid any form of cross contamination,

Dietary restrictions are very common on property we are dealing with sometimes 20 families per day asking for special requests and food restrictions, this morning I have 14 families on the food programme, some are personal preference, some medically diagnosed and some are life threatening and some very severe like [xxx],

I fully understand your case and understand your daughter has very severe allergies to sesame seeds and tree nuts, I will in fact include all nuts to be 100% safe, we will do our very very best to ensure you are all very well looked after, I would like to be able to safely offer your daughter as much choice and selection as possible so if you are fine with this proposal let’s meet when you guys arrive and we will very carefully go over your daughters food requests and requirements, I feel very comfortable dealing with your request and I am sure we can do many many happy meals for [xxx] and the whole family all over the resort,

We are looking forward to your arrival, should you have any more question please feel free to drop me an email and I will reply as soon as possible…

Warmest Regards Chef.

Think my clients are going to Beaches Turks and Caicos with a clear heart?  You betcha!

Food allergies?  Beaches will treat you right!

Advertisements

November 27, 2010 - Posted by | Lush Life Food, WIne & Spas, Lush Life Hotels, Lush Life Kids

5 Comments »

  1. […] this article: Food Allergies? Beaches will treat you right! « Sheila Gallant … Saturday, November 27th, 2010 Uncategorized TAGS: caicos, getting-initial, quickly-made, short, […]

    Pingback by Food Allergies? Beaches will treat you right! « Sheila Gallant … | Caribbean Cruise Line Top 10 | November 27, 2010 | Reply

  2. […] Food Allergies? Beaches will treat you right! « Sheila Gallant … Saturday, November 27th, 2010 Uncategorized TAGS: caicos, getting-initial, quickly-made, short, […]

    Pingback by Food Allergies? Beaches will treat you right! « Sheila Gallant … | Caribbean Cruise Line Top 10 | November 27, 2010 | Reply

  3. This email alone is the ultimate in customer service. This person needs to be commended for the fantastic job.

    The letter sounds professional but it is still personalized enough that this family just knows the care and concern is there that their situation can be and will be handled with total professionalism.

    This particular location has a complete gem for an executive chef. I hope they realize the first-class employee they have and the importance this individual is to their success.

    Comment by Kathi Robinson | November 27, 2010 | Reply

  4. Wow. I think from the outside it looks wonderful – but as the mom of a food allergic child, still not sure I could totally trust someone handling that many families to get it right. Sadly, that’s the reality with severe allergies and it is better to be safe! I would go and maybe pack safe foods or ask to help be in the kitchen! LOL 🙂 Our son used to have such severe eczema too caused by intolerances – thankfully he is much better now that he takes his Belly Boost probiotics, but we still and always will avoid actual allergens and carry his Epi Pen on top of being careful!

    Comment by SGM | November 29, 2010 | Reply

    • Thanks for your comment. Parents have to be constantly vigilant, it’s true – but this is obviously a huge step forward in presenting options.

      Comment by Sheila Gallant-Halloran | November 29, 2010 | Reply


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: