Gasthof Löwen gives employees company holidays – head chef Oliver Wirkus enjoys a break in Thailand
“The team was initially overwhelmed with this message”
Instead of standing at the stove in the Löwen inn, head chef Oliver Wirkus (25) enjoys the company holidays on the beach in Thailand. But he can’t sit back and relax. He still has to study for exams.
Head chef Oliver Wirkus (25) and sous chef Tim Jäggi (right) spend their free time on the beach in Thailand.
Milena KalinEditor Economics
The employees of the Gasthof Löwen in Hausen am Albis ZH are to be envied: The company takes a two-month break – and sends the employees on paid vacation.
Head chef Oliver Wirkus (25) enjoys his free time with his sous chef Tim Jäggi on the beach in Koh Chang in Thailand. Previously, Wirkus had not made any long-distance trips for a long time. He used to travel a lot. “This is the chance,” he thought when the company holidays were announced, he tells Blick from Thailand.
Time for backpack trip
The employees do not get a full two months of extra vacation. They give part of their regular vacation time to the winter break and work more in the high season between March and December.
The joy about the break at the beginning of the year is great across the board, it says from the lion. Someone visits their mother in the Dominican Republic after a long time. Another uses the time for a backpack trip. It is the first long-distance trip for sous-chef Tim Jäggi.
At first, however, the team had to let the information sink in. “I think the team was initially overwhelmed with this message,” says Wirkus.
Two months of paid company holidays cannot be implemented in every company. Young employees in particular work at the Löwen. “They are adventurous and keen to travel, flexible and still want to see and do as much as possible,” says the chef. But also older team members were happy to spend time with children and grandchildren or to travel to family.
Buffalo with sand between your toes
Wirkus can not only roast in the sun on the beach in Thailand. At the end of January he has to take written exams for his further training as a chef at the Gastgewerbeverband Gastrozürich. Instead of studying alongside work, he now crams in Thailand in the sunshine and sea breeze.
“I think that slowing down and relaxing here in Thailand can help me to prepare productively for the exams,” says Wirkus. It was a relief for him that towards the end of the year he could let his learning slide with a clear conscience. He knew that the company holidays were coming soon.
As a result, the Löwen employees can no longer take many vacation days during the rest of the year. “Whether that’s stupid or not is a question that cannot be answered in general at this point in time,” says Wirkus. “In our industry, the days and weeks fly by so quickly that it will soon be January again.” And the lion closes its doors again.