Marcela, tell us a little about yourself. Where are you from? What do you do? Who was Marcela before the development of La Esquina?
Hello! I am Marcela from Guatemala City. I am the executive Chef at Grupo Alta and I design new restaurant concepts, develop menus and train staff for La Esquina.
How did you begin with La Esquina? What was the spark that inspired you?
We began with a crazy idea of taking the traditional Guatemalan culture experience to a whole new level. The spark that inspired me was my grandmother, who motivated me to dream big and follow my gut. Being my first project it felt like too much to handle, but now I can say that you are never truly ready for anything until you experience it.
What is your biggest achievement with La Esquina? What’s your project’s essence?
My biggest achievement with La Esquina is that we have inspired others to opening new concepts in Guatemala as well, to trust in their idea and execute it well. We love our community and love that we have been such an important role urbanizing the areas where we open.
What are the biggest challenges when it comes to working in the food industry and developing a new brand?
The biggest challenge is the “one time shot” you generally have to impress your client. If they do not like it the first time, it is most likely they will never come back again.
Aside from that, another challenge is having a food hall with six different kitchens and 50 employees that all need to work in-sync. Teamwork and hard work becomes key in order to achieve our goals.
What is the thing you enjoy the most about your work? Where do you see yourself in the future?
I enjoy sharing my work with other Guatemalans! I love to show them that anything is possible and that here, in Guatemala, we have some of the best talent and products in the world. In the future, I see myself with various different hospitality concepts around the world.
What is your dream? What’s the source of motivation that continues pushing you on pursuing that dream?
My dream is to bring the ultimate food hall experience to people around the world by expressing the true food and culture of our markets. Through this, I want to inspire others to dream and follow their passion.
My mother and my daughter are the main source of motivation pushing me to pursue my dreams. I want to make my mother proud, and leave a legacy to my daughter.
What is your dream for the world? What message would you like to share to our audience?
My dream to the world is to dare to be you! Be free, be wild and be happy. I feel like the only way to achieve this, is doing what you love and doing it with passion. Surround yourself with people likeminded and with whom you can share goals; you will feed ideas and energy from each other. There is nothing like having people you can count on; they will keep you going!