Fate wrote it all.
At the foot of the Marmolada, the Queen of the Dolomites, a story of love and more.
Two young people: Jacopo born near the sea, Manuela instead in the mountains. A fortune-teller who reads the future.
It might sound like a film, but it is only the story of an entrepreneurial success story whose ingredients are love, family and passion for their work.
Baita Dovich is today an example for the Agordino area, a proposal for quality tourist accommodation with a catering service that fears no comparison.
Baita Dovich was a traditional mountain hut which, since 1965, had been serving classic mountain food. A simple and sincere place, run by the uncles and cousins of Manuela, a young girl from Rocca Pietore, who did not yet know where destiny would take her.
In 1991 the first change came: Manuela’s father started renovating and Baita Dovich expanded to become a hotel. A family-run project, to which Manuela brings her freshness and, together with her sister, begins to contribute in the kitchen.
In the meantime, Jacopo, a young boy from Venice Lido, was taking his first steps into the world of work, between seasons in the mountains and the sea.
But everything was already decided.
“And to think that after a first season spent alone in 2001 at Baita Dovich, Jacopo returned the following year with his girlfriend. He was the assistant chef, she was a waitress. I already knew his father, because he came from Bramezza, a beautiful village nearby,” Manuela smiles as she tells him today.
As chance would have it, that very year Manuela had her cards read by a local lady, just for fun: ‘Darling, I can see a person in uniform in your future’. A policeman? A pilot? “No, it could be a cook’s uniform”.
Manuela still jokes about this episode, but underneath it all, there is still some doubt: was destiny already written?
In fact, in 2007 Manuela and Jacopo got married and, years later, the family expanded with Leonardo.
Today Manuela looks after the guests between the hotel and the dining room, while Jacopo is a well-known chef in the area.
“For us at Baita Dovich, cooking is hospitality, tradition, but also a business model and a vision of the world, an awareness of the challenges of our time but also of what the future can bring.
I come from a traditional family and, thanks to my parents, from a very early age I learned to understand the meaning of respect and tradition. Even today, I still remember the smells I smelled coming from the kitchen as a child and my first experiences in front of the cooker. A memory that has left an indelible mark on me: before we start cooking, we must respect our guests.
Over the years, however, Baita Dovich has never stopped. On the contrary, today, even more than yesterday, it launches a challenge that goes beyond the restaurant sector, promoting a diversified but at the same time coordinated business model between haute cuisine and hotellerie.
After the pandemic,” explains Manuela, “we will be faced with a new model of tourism. Those who come to the mountains will be looking for a meaningful experience, to be lived and told. Tourists will prefer to stay in a hotel with a strong personality. Not large structures, therefore, but small establishments like ours, which, by offering an important value proposition and dedicating themselves personally to the customer, will lead the traveller to experience the area, the communities, and to connect with the beauty of our places”.
Baita Dovich is investing heavily in wellness and experiential marketing to appeal to the guest’s emotional sphere.
Jacopo and Manuela tell us together: “We have decided to look to the future. We don’t want to be a classic hotel with a restaurant, but a location where our customers can really find a place to live. But to do all this, we need to be well structured, to keep up with the times and to offer a quality service in every aspect. That is why we decided to work with strategic partners, paying attention not only to their know-how but also to the people themselves. Today we are a cohesive team working together. And the guests appreciate that, which is a great satisfaction for us.”