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INSPIRE Taster Day at the Park Plaza Riverbank London Hotel

Ten students from St. Charles Catholic College in Kensington were invited to Springboard’s INSPIRE Taster Day which began with an amazing breakfast laid out by the Park Plaza Riverbank London Hotel.

After breakfast, the students were taken on a tour of the hotel by a member of the housekeeping team who was able to provide information and answer questions about why the hospitality industry is such a great place to work.

Following the tour, a welcome talk and introduction was provided by Axel, the Hotel Manager, and June, the Head of HR. It was great to see the passion and enthusiasm that these senior members of staff had for the career paths and opportunities available in the industry.

Both Axel and June talked about their career journeys and how they began as waiters. This had led them to managerial positions in one of London’s most prestigious hotels!

"The St. Charles travel & tourism department would like to thank Springboard & the Park Plaza River Bank Hotel so much for the taster day - it was excellent and the students really enjoyed the experience. The Hotel Manager Axel and all the other staff gave us an amazing welcome and a valuable overview of the hotel through the tours and talks they provided.”

Teddy, the hotel’s ‘itamae’ or sushi chef then gave the students a masterclass in the art of sushi rolling. The work experience candidates took to the task like ducks to water!

Following Teddy’s excellent leadership they created their own delicacies.The masterclass was a great opportunity to get a taste for the different roles available in the industry. They also learned some new skills and ate some delicious sushi!

The final activity of the day was a lesson in banqueting skills! Tom, a member of the hotel team, taught the students how to fold napkins into miniature Sydney Opera Houses. He then explained how to lay a table for a banquet! The students were then split into two teams and raced to see who could lay their table the quickest! It was great fun and both teams did a fantastic job.

The Taster Day ended with a delicious lunch provided by the hotel and a final Q&A with the hotel staff. All in all, it was an amazing insight into the inner workings of a hotel and the huge variety of career opportunities available in the hospitality, leisure and tourism industry. Alongside this, we had a lot of fun!

The day was a great success and was given a ringing endorsement by the school: “The staff motivated students and encouraged them to be fully engaged - making these very memorable experiences which were great for confidence building. We really hope that Springboard’s Hotel taster days can become a regular feature of our course delivery as they bring an invaluable insight into the industry that is hard to create in the class room.”