In 1988, world famous Chef Alfredo Bellinghieri acquired a small hotel in a sleepy fishing village on the north eastern coast of Baja California on what at the time appeared to be a whim.
Alfredo had a vision.
When he saw the Sea of Cortez on the east, encircled by the Sierra Madre mountains to the west, nature at its best uncontaminated by urban sprawl, abundant sea life, warm ocean waters, hot springs flowing from the ground, he knew that he had stumbled upon was no less than a piece of paradise.
He saw what could be with the right planning and will – for Alfredo was an artist. Everything he touched when it came to the culinary world blossomed. People from all over the world, the rich and famous, politicians, actors and actresses, artists and industrialists, would go out of their way to stop at any one of his restaurants in the pink zone in Mexico City to indulge in one of his exceptional delicacies.
However, eating a meal at one of his restaurants was not just a culinary experience. It was a cultural phenomenon that stayed with you for life. Just listening to him or watching him left you with the absolute knowledge that you were in the presence of a great Chef, a creator of recipes that have and will endure for time immemorial. A lover of nature. A lover of life. A visionary who knew how to bring pleasure to us all.
Alfredo passed away last year right at the time when his daughter Palma took it upon herself to finally make Alfredo’s dream come true. To make his vision a reality.
San Felipe is a small fishing village on the North Eastern coast of Baja California just 1.5 hours south of Mexicali by car.
Over the past 15 years, both Mexican nationals as well as Americans seeking a peaceful, tranquil layback environment free of the hustle and bustle of the big city, where nature abounds, where the ocean is user friendly, where the cost of living is still relatively low and is close to the US border, have been discovering San Felipe much as did Alfredo close to 40 years ago. They are purchasing home lots by the thousands. In fact, today the San Felipe area is home to over 15 thousand home lot owners – and the numbers just keep growing.
Additionally, San Felipe is considered to be one of the richest fishing enclaves in the world and is now a protected zone from commercial fishing by the Mexican government that will ensure its sustainability. The area has also become very popular with off road sports enthusiasts who come from all over North America to enjoy the vast terrains available for exploration. The list goes on and on as to the recreational opportunities that abound, and yet the small town feel has been preserved.
Chef Palma has been involved in the hotel, restaurant and tourism industry for the past 30 years. She is a graduate of the Pierrefeux Institute and Glion Hotel Management School in Montreaux, Switzerland. Born in Mexico City, Palma has managed the current property and hotel for over 30 years and is an expert in the region. Contracted by the Mexican Tourism Secretariat, Palma developed the first commercial websites for Mexico’s Department of Tourism, the Mayan World states of Campeche, Quintana Roo, Tabasco, Chiapas, Yucatan, and for the countries of Belize, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador. Her company built the initial websites for Latin America’s two largest airlines, Mexicana Airlines and Aeromexico, in addition to building sites for Hyatt, Crown Plaza, Holiday Inn, and over 100 other hotels. Additionally, she had the official contracts for the City of Cancun as well as many other strategic relationships in the public and private sectors including Latin America’s largest tourism developer of hotels, resorts, marinas and residential communities, Situr/Sidek.
Today, Chef Palma brings her years of experience, dedication and culinary excitement to San Diego, in the form of cooking classes in Del Mar, catering and office events, women’s gatherings, cooking birthday parties, healthy lifestyle food coaching, and as a personal chef for private parties. She is an active Chef as well at Rancho La Puerta Spa & Wellness Center in Tecate.
For more information Chefpalma.com
Fernando Bellinghieri founded the brand “Bellinghieri Products” and introduced Atesanal Jams in Mexico flowing the quality and standards of the family legacy, with only fresh produce and low glycemic for the general public.