La Place Collection was founded in Beijing in 2005 by two long-time friends, Polly Lo from Vancouver, and Laurier Dubeau from Montreal. La Place caters to both corporate clients and individual customers, and is well known for its truffle collection, chocolate-making demos, special gift items and catering services. It has been widely covered in various Chinese media, as well as some Canadian and European media.
Our Interview with Laurier Dubeau
What motivated you to open a chocolate business?
Polly Lo, my business partner, was interested in opening a new business in China. After visiting Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory in Vancouver, she thought everybody was so happy in the store that she wanted to share the same chocolate experience with people in Beijing. After long research, we believed there was great potential for such business in China, as chocolate was something very new here.
Did you have any formal training in chocolate making?
I never had any formal training as pastry chef or chocolate maker before, but have been a chocolate lover since my childhood. We discovered Ecole Chocolat programs and I immediately registered for the basic course, the Master's program and Quality Assurance Program. We then opened our business in May 2005.
Where do you get your inspiration for the different flavors and textures you include in your chocolates?
I get inspiration from everywhere, from other people, from colleagues and friends, even from customers. Polly, being the GM as well as our marketing guru, always provides invaluable input on new trends and customers tastes. Before each new season, we sit down and discuss new ideas, new flavors, new packaging.
If you had to describe your product line in a couple of sentences, what would that be?
We offer the best that chocolate can provide in terms of freshness, balance of flavors, simplicity and health benefits. We use no preservatives or artificial coloring. We also answer our customers' demands by providing original, creative chocolate flavors and packaging.
What is your personal favorite out of all the products you make and why?
I actually have two favorite products, which are our very first and basic truffles and are always welcomed by our customers: the dark 70% cocoa truffle, and our delicious milk chocolate hazelnut truffle. Simplicity at its best!
No.2 Sanlitun North Alley
Beijing, China 100600
+86 (010) 6466-8090
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