Palladium Hotels & Resorts decided to expand menu services to cater to individuals with food allergies as a way of opening a new market in the competitive world of all-inclusive Central and South American and Caribbean resort markets. The chain currently has fourteen all-inclusive resorts and spas in the region.

In their resorts in the Mexican Riviera Nayarit, Maya, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Spain and Brazil, the Palladium chain created a unique menu service that is meant to cater to those with food allergies without creating embarrassment or awkward exchanges.

Upon reservation and booking, guests with allergies can note dietary restrictions and receive a color-coded, bilingual card from the front desk. When dining in any of the resort’s restaurants or bistros, the cards can be shown to the wait staff for immediate recognition of special needs without explanations.

Wait staff and kitchen staff are fully trained to prepare gluten-free, Type 2 diabetes diets, and dishes free of seven common allergies, including nuts, seafood, egg, dairy, lactose, and more.

Further, the buffets and a la carte menus are also color labeled to match the dietary needs cards so guests eating from those venues can know what is on their diet.

The system is new this year, but Palladium’s Felipe Martinez, director of operations, Americas, says it has so far worked well. It may be a model for other hotels and resorts to consider following.

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