PLANNERS have served up a real treat for town centre residents and visitors.
The critically acclaimed Tante Marie Culinary Academy will be moving from its current home in Carlton Road to Commercial Way as part of continued development in the heart of Woking. Taking two floors in the refurbished Alexander House, Tante Marie will furnish its renowned cookery school with a training theatre, student kitchens and lecture rooms on the first floor.
On the ground floor, it will open a teaching restaurant to showcase the quality of its graduates and provide a workplace-based environment to offer advanced hospitality management training and qualifications.
The restaurant will have open-air seating running along Commercial Way.
Refurbishment work to Alexander House is already underway, with the restaurant scheduled to open in early 2015.
Tante Marie’s Managing Director and Principal, Andrew Maxwell, said he was delighted to announce the move.
“In this, our 60th year, we have really exciting plans for the further development of the academy in Woking and for the enhanced training we will be able to offer to our students through their work in the training restaurant,” he explained.
“Our professional training and our Cordon Bleu diploma qualification have put Tante Marie on the map as a leading international cookery school, and have been the starting point for thousands of chefs who are now running successful businesses and enjoying careers in food around the world.
“We look forward to welcoming diners to our restaurant to experience for themselves the very best that graduates of Tante Marie Culinary Academy have to offer in terms of skill and service.”
In addition to its range of professional courses, Tante Marie plans to extend its range of gap year and lifestyle cookery subjects.
The move has been made possible through the improvements being made to Commercial Way by Woking Borough Council and the major refurbishments planned to Alexander House at the junction with Church Path and Mercia Walk.
Council Chief Executive, Ray Morgan, said: “The council is delighted that Tante Marie Culinary Academy, a valued local business with an international profile and reputation for high quality, is choosing to stay and expand in Woking.
“With an enhanced training programme and its new restaurant, it will be a great attraction to the revitalised town centre.”