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Carlos Ceciliano: Food and Beverage Manager at Croc’s Casino Resort

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Carlos Ceciliano Lugo Food and Beverage Manager Croc's Casino Resort

Carlos Ceciliano Lugo, Food and Beverage Manager for Croc’s Casino Resort in Jaco Beach Costa Rica

According to the great Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw, there is no love sincerer than the love of food. In Costa Rica, food is a fresh, yet mostly utilitarian experience. This is something that Carlos Ceciliano, the new Food and Beverage Manager at Croc’s Casino Resort in Jaco Beach, is sworn to change.

Croc’s Casino Resort aims to offer luxurious experiences in every aspect, particularly as it relates to food and beverages. To this end, the resort carefully selected Carlos Ceciliano to ensure that every meal and drink served adheres to the highest gourmet standards of taste, preparation and offers a unique experience.

Carlos is a native of Venezuela, a country that has produced many chefs and culinary professionals interested in international cuisine and gourmet fusion recipes. Latin American cuisine is particularly well-disposed for the fusion treatment due to the many flavors, preparation methods, ingredients, and regional tastes.

Prior to joining Croc’s Casino Resort in Jaco Beach, Carlos managed the food and beverage operations at Hotel Punta Leona, Barcelo Tambor and Occidental Allegro in Guanacaste. He has managed Applebee’s franchises and has also served as an industry consultant for Italian, Lebanese and Mediterranean restaurants as well as for steakhouses and seafood dining establishments.

The Exclusive Dining Experience at Croc’s

The culinary vision for Croc’s Casino Resort is to offer guests an incredible dining experience. To this end, Carlos is planning to leverage the freshness of organic and locally-grown fruits, grains and vegetables. He will make sure that there is a certain Latin American culinary sensitivity at Croc’s, but guests will be able to enjoy a great variety of dishes, from charcuterie fine cuts to traditional Costa Rican dishes and from Italian food to healthy meals and everything in between.

Part of Carlos’ plan for Croc’s is to deliver and improve on the Las Vegas-style ambiance that the developers are bringing to Jaco Beach. This means that residents, guests and visitors will be constantly entertained whether they are at the casino, by the pool, at the snack bar, dance clubs, in their condos, or in their hotel suites. Should they feel like having a drink, cocktail, a snack, appetizer or a meal, Carlos wants to make sure that they receive a range of quality gourmet and unique choices.

Fresh and casual dining will be the focus of the ground-floor restaurants at Croc’s Casino Resort. Guests will have many international options for breakfast, lunch and dinner. This dining area, yet to be named, is ideal for guests who want a high-quality meal but perhaps do not wish to sit down for two hours. People on the go, heading out to enjoy the beach, pool, casino or tours for the day, can still have great food any time of day.

On the second floor of Croc’s Casino Resort, gourmet lunch and dinner courses will be served. This fine-dining experience will have a Mediterranean theme, but will also feature fine cuts, an extensive wine list, steaks, and freshly-caught and carefully selected seafood. This dining area is perfect for epicureans and couples who wish to enjoy candlelit dinners. Daily specials will be offered from culinary regions such as Spain, Italy, France, Greece and others.

Croc’s is also negotiating with a coffee franchise to have placement on the premises, to offer great cappuccinos and other deletable beverages. The Starbucks franchise is the prime candidate for the cafe offering at Croc’s.

Carlos is determined to apply all the elements of fine-dining at Croc’s; from the table service to the choice of ingredients and from preparation to elaborate garnishing, diners will experience the best gourmet experience in Costa Rica. He explains:

“No matter what your age or culinary preferences, we’re going to have all the options available so you feel you are being pampered at all times.If you order a hamburger, it’s going to be the best hamburger you can get; if we’re offering an Italian dish, it’s going to be the best Italian food in the Central Pacific. There are 30 different places to eat a burger in Jaco, but you will never have a hamburger like ours – we’re going to offer the highest quality to our guests, in terms of the product, preparation and service. Quality is not negotiable.”

For more info about Croc’s Casino Resort, watch the video overview, or visit

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