Let’s march to the Marché
While Jörg Reichert was toiling in the background to keep everything moving smoothly, Marianne was very visible in the restaurant, talking to the guests and making sure they felt welcome and were satisfied with the service – with one eye – and with the other she quietly supervised the behaviour and efficiency of the staff. This was obviously a very valuable contribution to the success of the restaurant and the wellbeing of its patrons, who frequently became ‘regulars’.
Another Mövenpick was opened in Yorkville that was not only frequented by yuppie types but also found favour with other groups of more demanding culinary connoisseurs.
The Reichert’s were also responsible for the Marché – the often-imitated European market-style - concept. Witness the restaurant opposite the CN Tower on Front Street that featured gastronomic proficiency and great ambiance and the Marché sections, copied in 25 operations in large urban centres in Canada and the US, under the Richtree Marketing umbrella.
Richtree, Mövenpick and the Reicherts parted company in 2004. That prompted them to look for another opportunity and another challenge.
They found it when Jörg noticed the large 14.000 square-foot – two-story - log house, just east of the 400 highway at the Innisfil Beach Road exit, at the gateway to the Muskoka region and about 80 km north of Toronto.
The target market is the thousands of travellers that frequent this route to get to the cottage or to go skiing.
This new project bears some striking similarities to his former Mövenpick Marchés in Toronto. Guests pick what they want to eat from the various specialty stations where the meal is prepared in front of them – from sushi to pasta. If they are in a rush, the meal will be packed up for them and off they go, back on the highway.
A staff of about 100 – mostly well-trained local help - will make sure that the visitors are satisfied and pleased.
This landmark log home has been changed into a 300-seat market restaurant with a 2,500 sq.ft. retail shop that offers everything from gifts and magazines to European chocolate, ham, breads and cheeses.
A 180 seat patio and balcony seats are also available, weather permitting.
The food, of course, will be local, but the gleaming, custom-made fixtures and furniture have been imported from Spain, Switzerland, France, Holland and Germany for this breathtaking establishment. Total cost? About 6 million Dollars!
But many changes are still planned for the future; the Reicherts are not sitting still. They are still planning a petting zoo, outside playgrounds – they already own the largest sandbox – beer garden and picnic drive-thru, a drive up banking machine and a gas station. So if you are anywhere near the area I can only recommend you drop in. If you see Jörg or Marianne tell them I send you and that you read about them in this paper.
The restaurant is only minutes away from the Georgian Downs racetrack and the 400 Flea Market – another potential source of discriminating guests, that would also enjoy the fully licensed bar. And as the variety of food is concerned – if you can think of it, you are most likely to get it at the Marché. Bon Appetite!
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