Hyatt Escala invites Park City to free cooking demonstrations |

Hyatt Escala invites Park City to free cooking demonstrations

Gina BarkerThe Park Record

Master Chef Greg Neville of the popular Lugano Restaurant in Salt Lake City began caramelizing sugar over slices of pear, carefully wielding a kitchen blow torch as on-lookers craned to see him at work.

Neville is one of four Master Chefs invited by the Hyatt Escala Lodge this month to participate in their "Cooks in the Kitchen" series, where the public can watch and learn as chefs prepare a few favorite dishes. While the culinary skills are a definite plus, the Hyatt Escala Lodge created the series with a simple goal: showcase the kitchens.

"We wanted to create a community event that would be fun, but also show off our kitchens," said Tom Clark, the president the brokerage company that works for the Hyatt Escala. "It feels more like a home than a condo. … It’s not the kind of residence where you have to send out because you don’t have the space."

Clark worked with the Hyatt Escala Lodge to bring in the master chefs with hopes that their unusual marketing technique might draw potential condo owners.

Whitney Pearson, a Park City local since 1993, said she decided to drop in on the event because of how much she loves Chef Neville’s food. As a realtor, Pearson said she saw the potential in creating events to draw in new crowds to the resort.

"This is such a great way to get people to notice what they have here," Pearson said. "As a realtor, I would first listen to what someone needs, but if it’s someone with family and they want be able to just come, park and enjoy, the Canyons Resort is a great place to start."

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Pearson said the event managed to do something tricky, get people in the door without any pressure.

"I like the approach," she said. "It’s a soft ‘Get to know us’ approach. It is not the traditional sales approach."

One visitor at the demonstration said he might not be in the market, but he gets what the Hyatt Escala is going for.

"I don’t know that this would get us to sign anything, but the biggest struggle anyone has is getting people in the door," said Brian Poger. "This got us in the door and we’re reasonable prospects when it comes to actually buying a condo."

The series includes three more demonstrations, the next with Chef Amanda Buchanan, the chef for the Hyatt Escala Provisions Company, on Mar. 12 from 4 to 7 p.m. Future chefs also include Houman Gohary of Good Karma and Igor Krichman of Prime Steak Sushi Bar. For more information about upcoming events visit .