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About Us

Paladar y Tomar: about us

‘Gastronomy, the strongest human connector’

 

Paladar y Tomar designs bespoke itineraries using gastronomy as the common thread to explore the world. This is not a bad motive if we consider that to ensure genetic survival the sex urge needs only to be satisfied a few times in a lifetime but the hunger urge, on the other hand, must be satisfied every day; cooking, thus, becomes more than a necessity, it is the symbol of our humanity (Robin Fox, The Myth of Nutrition).

As a boutique agency we believe in new luxury experiential travel. As Spanish natives with offices in Barcelona and Jerez de la Frontera, we design bespoke experiences around Spain for the most discerning of travelers with a taste for authenticity and singularity.

Using gastronomy as the unifying thread, we tell stories through intimate hand-woven moments and offer unique experiences driven by our first-hand knowledge and presence in the region to actively encourage the desire for newer exploration. We believe in the power of cuisine as the perfect vehicle to unveil the local culture, history, nature and lifestyle of the destination. 

Our team aims to share – in a way few others can – the unrushed, unpretentious, and unspoiled splendor of the country we are so passionate about.

WHAT WE DO

We are former food and wine industry marketers and luxury hospitality and travel managers striving to activate our customers senses. We design the most unconventional and enduring travel experiences with a holistic approach through our well established network of contacts. We take personalization to a different level in every journey.

Intensively research-focused, we refine the natural connection between local gastronomy with the arts, antiques, religion, social traditions, literature, métiers, health and wildlife. We mix them up with the most intimate local knowledge in order to best suit each individual traveler interests and expectations, always respecting longstanding traditional foundations.

We show you the true fabric of our destinations. From the most unexpected gourmet trail in Sevilla, to a hands-on private culinary session with expert local chefs in Barcelona or San Sebastián; from unconventional winery visits typically restricted to wine pros to off-the-beaten track shopping or lifestyle tours; exclusive access to privately-owned brave bulls fincas to restricted access to authentic and private flamenco performances: we bring the real essence to you.

We organize any tailor-made itinerary in Spain completely hassle-free to you – we take care of every detail. Wether you come with your family or a group of friends, we offer our expert guidance and support throughout your stay. Learn more about our Personal Travel Concierge services here.

As luxury hospitality experts our goal is that you feel at home; that is why we have partnered with the best boutique hotels and we are called hotel sommeliers, and we have personally curated a hand picked collection of high-end private apartments and villas to create your pop-up home wherever you choose to travel with us.

WHY US?

EXCLUSIVITY

We open doors: our experiences are not available through any standard commercial channel. Privileged access.

EXCELLENCE

We are continuously improving and always in pursuit of excellence. Trusted to deliver excellence is our brand promise.

AUTHENTICITY

We don’t invent anything; we don’t adapt anything; we always show our destinations as they truly are.

SMALL IS BIG

We support small independent producers and boutique-in-attitude big players. We embrace emotions.

TRADITION

We strive to communicate local traditions and to recover stories from oral history. We fight for our legacy.

PERSONAL

Travel on a deeper emotional and integral personal level. Engage with locals and create your own personal experience leading toward a path for a transformative journey.

LIFESTYLE

Wine and food are our keys to reveal the magical Spanish way of life. Join us in a unique adventure around Southern Europe and beyond.

MAVERICKS

We push our own boundaries to avoid stereotypes and mass-market travel. We take risks, break the rules and set our own goals.

GREEN THINKING

Sustainability is one of our pillars. We focus on independent artisan producers who respect and enrich the environment.

EMPOWERMENT

Our customers write their own story. We don’t intervene in authentic setting and let leading characters to speak for themselves.

3 KILLER DIFFERENCES

WINE & FOOD TALENTED

We follow gastronomic roads to reach Spain’s dynamic social scene.

Join us for the most unconventional and unshakeable wine and food events.

DESTINATION GURUS

We orchestrate one-of-a-kind experiences typically exclusive to well-connected locals.

We keep it simple to  make great things happen.

WE KEEP IT PERSONAL

We take personalization to a different level in every journey.

We make your dreams come true.

CUSTOMER SERVICE EXCELLENCE

AT YOUR OWN PACE

All our suggested tours and trips shown on this site are flexible and customizable. Take them as an inspiration, as we will adapt every detail to your schedule, interests, lifestyle and individual needs.

 

NO BOUNDARIES

We offer only genuine and off-the-beaten-track experiences in Spain and wherever gastronomy drives us. We are always in search of the best and we go the extra mile in every activity.

 

BIG STORIES

The human element makes all the difference, and you deserve to experience in full a heightened version of traveling. We captivate travelers through our storytelling.

BEYOND FOOD & WINE

From our all-embracing approach we cover all your travel needs; from hotel curation, local transportation, to unique seamless and authentic immersive experiences.

 

EXCLUSIVE ACCESS

We open doors to the most amazing underground experiences and gastronomic locations. Through our black book of contacts we give access to the inaccessible.

 

SUSTAINABILITY

We care about sustainability, local and health-minded travel consciousness. We care about the social and environemental impact of our actions.

THE FOUNDERS

Paladar y Tomar: who we are

Our dedicated team is comprised of wine and culinary professionals, guides and lecturers in a network that spreads through Spain, Portugal and Morocco. Our specialists include some of the most noteworthy winemakers, important sommeliers and Masters of Wine, highly celebrated chefs and culinary researchers, architects and fine arts curators, local key personalities and flamenco PhDs. Meet the executive management team:

Fernando Paredes, co-founder and travel advisor Paladar y Tomar travel

Fernando Paredes

Co-founder & CEO

Born in Barcelona with a family from Jerez, it’s not surprising that Fernando has spent his life moving between Northern and Southern Spain. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Economics at Barcelona University and thereafter started his career in pharmaceutical consulting. Eight years later, having traveled half the world, he decided to change his career and follow his true calling: travel.

Fernando entered the tourism industry in 2005 as the General Manager of a bespoke outbound travel group with offices throughout. Every time he embarks on a new journey it’s as if it was the first time. He has visited India, Thailand, Nepal, Vietnam, Myanmar, Indonesia, Singapore, Costa Rica, Turkey, Yemen, Morocco, South Africa, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana, Namibia, Canada, USA and most of the Western European countries. Australia and South America are next on his bucket list. He is the personification of wanderlust.

Mediterranean and Asian cuisines are Fernando’s favorites but he appreciates any meal cooked with great affection. His preferred wine? Impossible to choose – he simply loves wine. He holds a Masters in Social Media Strategy from La Salle University in Barcelona and a postgraduate degree in Food Event Design from the European Design Institute. He is Certified Sherry Wine Cellar Advance Expert.

 

Valeska Idarraga, co-founder and travel advisor Paladar y Tomar travel

Valeska Idarraga

Co-founder & CMO

Valeska was born in Barcelona. She inherited a talent for cooking from her Basque grandmother, a chef for 30 years at one of the most prestigious Spanish restaurants, and from her French father she has acquired a taste for gastronomic culture. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Economics at Barcelona University and graduated in Journalism from Pompeu Fabra University. In 2004 she took a postgraduate course in Hotel Management at Glion Hotel School in Switzerland and a Yield Management Executive course at École Hôtelière de Lausanne. She is a Certified Sherry Wine Cellar Advance Expert.

When she returned to Barcelona, Valeska worked at some of the city’s most prestigious hotels (Gran Hotel La Florida 5* GL, Silken Diagonal) and soon afterwards she started her own company Xtrême & Trends, offering luxury personal concierge services, anticipating trends in close collaboration with Hotel Arts as personal shopper. The media soon covered her successes (The Wallpaper, The Globe and Mail, Robb Report, Fuera de Serie).

Valeska was forced to set aside her project for personal reasons, and spent the next nine years as marketing communications manager at a Japanese multinational company. She has lived in France, Switzerland and the U.S. She speaks Spanish, French, English, Italian and Catalan. She loves cooking and hosting private receptions at home.

 

 

PERSONAL TRAVEL ADVISORS

Our made-to-measure, full-concierge experiences offer an ideal solution to tailoring complex, multigenerational, and once-in-a-lifetime adventures. If you decide to travel on your own but need expert advice to design your perfect holiday, we can assist you. From a full itinerary-planning service to extra support for your self-defined trip, we can help you plan your perfect travel experience in Spain and beyond.

If you are interested in our travel consulting services, contact us here to learn more.

ABOUT_panoramic_view_barcelona

Gastronomy is part of our identity and an essential component of our cultural heritage