Newly renovated in 2018, the 4-star Hotel Crowne Plaza Zurich is located in the busy business-focused Zurich West district with 365 rooms. Thanks to its extensive 2,000 metre2 surface area, not only does the hotel boast fitness and wellness facilities but it also features newly-designed restaurants ‘Theo Randall’s Italian Kitchen’ and 122-seat buffet restaurant ‘West’ where the breakfast buffet is served every day to its guests.
As part of the renovation process, general manager Heinz Krähenbühl and his team revisited the hotel’s breakfast presentation and approached Swiss company Gastros Switzerland, specialist in induction undercounter solutions, also based in Zurich.
To improve the presentation and the quality of the breakfast food served and move away from the previous set-up using traditional electric chafing dishes, the management team wanted to make some equipment changes to their buffet.
They opted for 10 undercounter InductWarm 130+ units by Gastros Switzerland to keep their breakfast food warm, such as mushrooms, scrambled eggs, bacon, omelettes, baked beans, hash browns and even more.
“During the high season, we are serving an average of 420 breakfasts a day thanks to our 10 InductWarm units,” said Heinz Krähenbühl.
What was the main reason behind choosing this solution from Gastros Switzerland? “The main reason was the aesthetic look and feel of the system. The benefits of the exact temperature control with low maintenance involved were also key factors in selecting the 130+ undercounter units,” explained the general manager.
Gastros’ undercounter induction solutions are invisible, hidden under a fabricated counter where the surface is made from artificial stone; for this project the brand Laminam was used, a very strong material highly resistant to scratching and abrasion. This material fits perfectly the style of the whole interior design of the room.
Gastros offers advice and guidelines for surface materials including artificial stone, glass and even wood.
The hotel has chosen to use induction-compatible chafing dishes for its new breakfast buffet and Krähenbühl described their benefits: “Thanks to the induction chafing dishes with glass lids which feature a condensation return system back into the base of the chafing dish, we have a perfect presentation, keeping the food at the right temperature and the items are not drying out.”
Another advantage of using the 130+ undercounter units is that they are very easy to use. The induction units are controlled by external control panels located underneath the countertop in the plate shelf, nearly invisible to the guests. Each unit is controlled with one panel and as the Gastros system’s DPC (Dynamic Power Control) detects the quality of the inductive layer in the dish and adjusts its power accordingly, there is no need for external trivet or sensors.
For the general manager, the simplicity of using the equipment is a clear improvement from their former traditional food-warming equipment: “The main advantages we’ve noticed are the temperature control and the modern feel. The level of cleanliness is perfect with slick and even surfaces with no spilling of water from the equipment.”
For the guests, the breakfast buffet renovation has been a considerable improvement to their overall experience: “Our guests are delighted and impressed by the invisible heating units and the ease of flow around the buffet. The food stays fresh throughout service with the perfect temperature control.”
From a customer point of view, Krähenbühl explains: “Gastros has been very responsive during the project. Since everything was installed correctly, we have a perfectly functioning buffet.”
InductWarm by Gastros is a brand of buffet induction hobs and undercounter solutions developed by Gastros Switzerland. Gastros products, using the InductWarm technology, are perfect for front-of-house operations where space is at a premium and flexibility is required. Signature FSE represents InductWarm by Gastros in the UK.