Ho­tel Cho­co­lat is a Euro star

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Etbusiness Daily - By JOHN KRALEVICH john.kralevich@pe­ter­bor­oughto­day.co.uk *Peter­bor­oughet

HUNT­ING­DON-BASED Ho­tel Cho­co­lat is sell­ing its lux­ury choco­lates in Europe for the first time this month.

The lux­ury cho­co­latier and co­coa grower will be tempt­ing palates abroad when it open a store in Am­s­ter­dam fol­lowed by one in Copen­hagen in the sum­mer.

In the Dutch city, the Bri­tish brand has taken over a tra­di­tional five-storey town­house in a pop­u­lar area, Heiligeweg Street. It fea­tures a Ho­tel Cho­co­lat store and a “se­cret” Cof­fee Vs Co­coa Bar in an at­mo­spheric, oak­pan­elled room on the first floor – reached via a par­tially hid­den stair­case.

In Copen­hagen, the com­pany is open­ing its sec­ond Roast + Conch store in July, fol­low­ing the suc­cess of the first one in Covent Gar­den, London.

The 2,000sq ft prop­erty in Oster­gade Street will also be Ho­tel Cho­co­lat’s largest store. Copen­hagen has a rich gas­tro­nomic her­itage, so it is the per­fect choice for the full Roast + Conch of­fer­ing – with daily roast­ing of co­coa beans from the com­pany’s es­tate in Saint

Lu­cia, small batch choco­late mak­ing in a theatre kitchen, a Cof­fee Vs Co­coa Bar and dishes from the com­pany’s Ca­cao Cui­sine menu. That is as well as Ho­tel Cho­co­lat’s usual pre­mium choco­late gifts and treats.

CEO An­gus Thirl­well said: “I am in­cred­i­bly ex­cited about our Euro­pean plans. The Dutch and Dan­ish mar­kets are very sim­i­lar to the Bri­tish and so I feel we’ll fit in per­fectly.

“Copen­hagen is home to the world’s best res­tau­rant and has a gas­tro­nom­i­cally-aware pop­u­la­tion that we think will whole-heart­edly em­brace our Roast + Conch con­cept.”

In London, mean­while, Ho­tel Cho­co­lat plans to open its first Bou­can Res­tau­rant over the course of 2012, led by a Miche­lin star chef. It will fol­low closely the ex­clu­sive “ca­cao cui­sine” menu pi­o­neered at the highly rated Bou­can Saint Lu­cia.

And across the UK, the com­pany will con- tinue the roll-out of its suc­cess­ful Roast + Conch con­cept, by up­grad­ing ex­ist­ing stores when the tim­ing is ap­pro­pri­ate.

An­gus es­ti­mates that ap­prox­i­mately half of all stores will be Roast + Conch in the full­ness of time. He said: “When ap­pro­pri­ate, we’ll be up­dat­ing ex­ist­ing sites to Roast + Conch stores – some will be ca­sual cafés, some will have the full Roast + Conch of­fer.”

per­fect FIT: Ho­tel Cho­co­lat CEO An­gus Thirl­well com­ments on how he feels the com­pany will suit the Dutch and Dan­ish mar­kets.

SUITS YOU: ACR staff Rosie Hooton, left, and Danielle Molyneux ex­am­ine one of the suits col­lected for Dress For Suc­cess.

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