Dresden, 12 June 2014: Niko Pavlidis, head bartender of Karl May Bar at Hotel Taschenbergpalais Kempinski Dresden, has been selected within the scope of the Leblon Cocktail Competition as one of eleven bartenders worldwide to travel to Brazil in June 2014. Besides his passion for soccer, travelling and particularly the South-American way of life, Mr. Pavlidis has convinced the jury especially with his perception of bar culture: “It is very important to be a good bartender. However, what is even more important is to be a good host.” For his winning cocktails, “Le Maracanã” and “Seleçao”, which were specifically created for the contest, Mr. Pavlidis names the life-embracing soul of Brazil as his main source of inspiration. “I wanted to create cocktails that make you feel as if your heart is beating to the rhythms of the Samba”, he said. “Just like the blood pumping through your veins in the seconds before the decisive goal of the final match at Maracanã.” Both drinks will also be served at Karl May Bar until 13 July 2014.
True to “O jeitinho brasileiro”, the rather famous Brazilian art of life, the soccer playing Mr. Pavlidis will cheer for three teams this time: Greece, Germany and, of course, Brazil. Being born and raised in Greece, Mr. Pavlidis discovered his passion for hospitality early in life. After graduating with honours from the prestigious School of Bartending in Rostock, Germany, he signed on to work as a bartender on board the AIDA cruise ships – a decision for a career bearing the promise to travel the world. His love for coming into contact with many different people to exchange ideas and thoughts and experiencing the thrill of discovering the culinary arts and secrets of various new cultures and lifestyles were highly influential to his personal, as well as professional, development. It is still the foundation for many of the award-winning cocktails listed on the menu of Karl May Bar.
Premium Cachaça brand Distillery Maison Leblon announced the tender for the 2014 cocktail competition in June 2013. Next to the topics of bar culture, lifestyle and soccer-madness, two cocktail recipes involving Leblon Cachaça were called for. After two rounds of competition, Mr. Pavlidis was finally accepted into the Leblon eleven as the only German bartender next to his international colleagues - Airto Cramer (Amsterdam), Nelson Lemus (New York City), Milos Zica (New York City), Brent Falco (Los Angeles), Cari Hah (Los Angeles), Ainsley Dixon (Miami), Gabriel Orta (Miami), Raul Faria (Las Vegas), Samuel Roustaing (Cannes), Thomas Huhn (Basel) and Josefran Martins Silva (Barcelona).
It is already the second recognition for Head Bartender Mr Pavlidis. In April of this year, Karl May Bar at Hotel Taschenbergpalais Kempinski was honoured with the annual Glenfiddich Award for Bar Culture, one of the most coveted awards in the bar scene. The bar was also chosen as “German Bar of the Year 2013”.
About Grand Hotel Taschenbergpalais Kempinski Dresden:
Hotel Taschenbergpalais Kempinski is a classic European grand hotel. Built by the Saxon king, August “The Strong”, in the 18th century as a pledge of love to his favourite mistress and faithfully restored in 1995; Grand Hotel Taschenbergpalais Kempinski is a beautiful composition of Baroque art and contemporary elegance. It is located in the very heart of Dresden’s historic city centre, which also include some of the city’s most renowned sights such as Semper Opera House, the Royal Palace and Dresdner Zwinger. The hotel offers 214 elegant guestrooms including 32 spacious suites. Dining options include three different restaurants, the lobby café and the hotel bar with its remarkably large selection of whiskies. The hotel’s Bel Etage with views of Dresden’s historic city centre, provides a proper setting for meetings, conventions, exclusive dinners or unforgettable cocktail receptions. All six function rooms feature connecting doors and are individually accessible through the Baroque double-barrelled staircase, which can provide a beautiful background for elegant receptions. Additionally, the divisible meeting space - ballroom and the 800 sq m (8,611 sq ft) inner courtyard can host events for up to 500 persons each. The Taschenbergpalais Spa Lounge features an indoor pool, sauna and solarium making it the perfect place to relax and ease your body and mind.
Created in 1897, Kempinski Hotels is Europe’s oldest luxury hotel group. Kempinski’s rich heritage of impeccable personal service and superb hospitality is complemented by the exclusivity and individuality of its properties. Kempinski now manages a portfolio of 73 five-star hotels in 31 countries and continues to add new properties in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Each one reflects the strength and success of the Kempinski brand without losing sight of its heritage. The portfolio comprises historic landmark properties, award-winning urban lifestyle hotels, outstanding resorts, and prestigious residences. Each one is imbued with the quality guests have come to expect from Kempinski while embracing the cultural traditions of its location. Kempinski is a founding member of the Global Hotel Alliance (GHA), the world’s largest alliance of independent hotel brands, which is celebrating its tenth anniversary in 2014.