If you’re bored of Weetabix, perhaps it is time for a change of breakfast menu.
How about congee (rice porridge), steam buns, Chinese pickles, hand-pulled noodles and green tea?
That was the breakfast for staff at the DoubleTree by Hilton York when it hosted a cultural exchange with a difference ahead of the start of Chinese New Year today (Tuesday, 5 February).
The hotel teamed up with Will Zhuang – who looks after Chinese VIP tour groups and provides local business with free consultation about UK-China trade – to host a dual national breakfast tasting session.
DoubleTree staff tucked into their Chinese breakfast while the Chinese guests had their first taste of black pudding, smoked haddock, bacon, fried bread and Yorkshire Tea.
Chinese visitors like York
This New Year cultural breakfast exchange is one of a series being staged by the hotel as it aims to attract a bigger slice of the growing Chinese tourist market.
Staff are being coached in how to welcome guests and also learning key words and phrases to make the stay of their overseas customers’ more memorable.
Nikki Brannan, DoubleTree by Hilton York’s sales and marketing director, said: “Whilst most people will have had Chinese food at either lunchtime or for dinner, I doubt very much they will have had it for breakfast.
“It was a great experience for the staff and for our Chinese guests too.
“And, more importantly, it will help us tailor our food and beverage offering to cater for the tastes of Chinese guests when staying with us.”
Will Zhuang is also executive headteacher of York Chinese School and president of the York Chinese Association. He said:
Chinese tourists love York and North Yorkshire.
We are seeing more and more coming to the region, which is fantastic for the local economy and York’s standing on the international tourism stage.
For the guests that I brought to the DoubleTree by Hilton York, this was the first time they’ve had a traditional English breakfast.
It was a shared learning experience for all concerned, and, for the Chinese visitors, it’s a great way to start their Chinese New Year celebrations.