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Classically trained Executive Chef, Ignacio Suarez, describes what motivates him in his position at Aviva-A Campus for Senior Life. “As a classically trained chef I owned and operated my own restaurant in Miami for 8 years. During that time I was able to refine not only my culinary skills but more importantly my skills in customer service. What brought me to Aviva was the sense of community and the stability I could provide not only for myself but for my family as well. Specifically, I fell in love with Aviva’s sense of purpose, it isn’t just a community for people to live in but a place to grow and expand their horizons. Now, after 12 years, I know that this place is special and the residents who call it home are some of the most interesting and dynamic seniors in the area.

When I first started at Aviva, I had the opportunity to work with a dietician to pick out certain ingredients that can really shine both from a culinary and health perspective. Every day the Aviva kitchens are bringing in fresh and local seafood, produce, herbs, and protein to serve that evening. From there we make everything from scratch, from our own stocks to our own marinades. We then take these house made elements and create dishes like roasted chicken topped with honey and balsamic vinegar glazed with blueberries or panko crusted pan seared Florida triple tail topped with a Dijon horseradish sauce.

Members of our culinary team on average have been with Aviva for over 10 years, and we cook because we love providing an experience. When a resident shares with us they enjoyed dinner or they tried something new and loved it that is the best motivator. That singular moment is the best feeling in the world.”

Aviva- A Campus for Senior Life is Sarasota’s only rental senior community offering all levels of care. The campus is comprised of several communities including Kobernick Independent Living, Anchin Assisted Living, Anchin Memory Care, and Benderson Skilled Nursing & Rehabilitation. For more information on Aviva’s innovative approach to senior living please visit our website avivaseniorlife.org

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