Saturday, 12 March 2011

The Rainforest Cafe - Part 2

Welcome back to Access London. If this is your first visit, please feel free to browse through my other posts which include videos, interviews and pictures from: Phantom of the Opera, The Cavendish Hotel, The British Museum and The Gielgud Theatre, plus many more.

As promised in my last post, I had the opportunity recently to interview someone from the fabulous Rainforest Cafe - a fun and exciting restaurant in the heart of London (Piccadilly Circus). To find out more about the restaurant, including viewing a video I took last weekend, please see my last post. So, without further ado, on with the interview....

AL: Who are you and what is your role at The Rainforest Cafe?
MA: I am Mark Ager, Sales and Marketing Manager at the Rainforest Cafe: London's largest family restaurant, located just 2 minutes from Piccadilly Circus.

AL: Can you briefly explain how The Rainforest Cafe is accessible to those with mobility problems and disabilities?
MA: At the time of booking, we ask if there are any mobility issues that we need to be aware of and send across to them an 'Access Statement' that gives instructions of how to access the jungle. If someone just arrives at the restaurant, a Manager will be notified and we provide assistance and advise of the entrance/access point for entry into The Rainforest Cafe. For us to remain compliant with the Disability Discrimination Act, we are only permitted to have two wheelchairs in the venue at any one time.

AL: What is it about The Rainforest Cafe that makes it unique and a great night out?
MA: A fully themed oasis, located in the heart of the West End, with Theatreland on your doorstep. With tropical rainstorms, animatronics and a funky-themed menu, the restaurant is suitable for the whole family.

AL: How would you describe the menu at The Rainforest Cafe?
MA: American European with a wild tropical twist!

AL: Do you cater for vegetarians and those with allergy and free-from diets?
MA: Of course! Our entire menu is highlighted with its suitability for various diets, allergies and intolerances. Our staff are fully trained on this and even when taking reservations we ask if there are any allergies or mobility issues that we need to be aware of. Again on arrival, our Safari Guides (our Waiters!) will ask if it's a special occasion and if there are any allergies that we should be aware of and we can then guide you through the menu accordingly.

AL: Being named after one of the most endangered landscapes in the world, what is The Rainforest Cafe doing to help with the preservation of the world's rainforests?
MA: A lot! Since 1997 and up until December 2010, Rainforest Cafe has made donations to the World Land Trust 'Buy an Acre' Fund to purchase, protect, manage and replant 785 acres of threatened tropical forest in Ecuador. This equates to 785 football pitches or an area almost 2.5 times the size of Hyde Park!

This has been achieved via a number of ways including, a donation from certain dishes on the menu and the money thrown into our 'ponds' is washed and given to the World Land Trust.

We also run Education Tours for schools and frequently do talks about the rainforests and how important they are to the world.

AL: If people visit the Rainforest Cafe to celebrate a special occasion, what can be done to help make it a really special night for them?
MA: We can arrange a cake (currently a Triple Chocolate Layer Cake), get the crew to sing Happy Birthday - this can be done for all ages (my dad of 80 was very pleased about this!) and provide a warm and welcoming atmosphere for everyone. Or, simply, something sparkly in the desert and again the crew can sing Happy Birthday. We do of course offer birthday party packages for the under 12's, which includes pary invites, activity packs and all sorts to make them smile :)

AL: Can you sum up in 5 words, The Rainforest Cafe Experience?
MA: Our tag line is 'A Wild Place to Shop and Eat!' Themed Fun, Central Location, Great Menu, Unique.

Access London would like to offer a huge thanks to Mark Ager for taking the time to answer our questions and also to all the team and safari guides at The Rainforest Cafe for helping us to enjoy a fun and unique evening.

To make a reservation at The Rainforest Cafe and/or to discuss any Access requirements, please call: 020 7434 3111.

COMING NEXT: 'Royal-Tea' at The Cavendish to celebrate the Royal Wedding
COMING SOON: Love Never Dies, The National Gallery

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