On Monday evening, employees of Cienté, Berkhamsted’s award winning salon, waited in nervous anticipation, not knowing what was in store for them.

Suddenly, three chauffeur-driven luxury people carriers arrived, from Ash Travels of Berkhamsted. The Cienté people were separated into small groups and whisked away behind blackened windows to a secret location.

Within a few minutes, the vehicles were pulling onto the gravel of a beautiful Queen Anne house, set in rolling parkland – the elegant Hunton Park Hotel in Leavesden.

But what was happening? And why the mystery?

All was revealed when Denise Highfield, Karen Bretts and Lucy Clark of How2boilwater.com stepped forward to introduce themselves.

The Cienté teams had been set up to test themselves against an Apprentice-style challenge.

The task for the teams was to make pasta. But this was no simple simmer-and-serve supper. This was all about the business of making pasta to make money. And, like in the TV show that had won itself a BAFTA the night before, the teams had to market their products.

Each group had to identify its target audience, make the pasta, choose the filling, design the packaging and promotional material and then present the product and marketing campaign ideas to the three very demanding judges.

The evening was a team building event devised by Cienté salon director Trisha Buller. The objective was to take team members out of their comfort zone of expertly cutting and colouring hair to see how they would perform in different roles in an unfamiliar environment.

And as the winning team cracked open the bubbly, the event was declared a total success.

“This was an amazing experience,” said Trisha Buller. “The Cienté team really enjoyed being challenged and put to the test and it was great to see them shine. I’d like to thank Ash Travels for providing the transport, Shoot Me Studios for recording the event and a particularly big thank you to How2boilwater.com for making the evening possible.”

How2boilwater.com is a Berkhamsted cookery school that believes anyone can cook. They teach individuals and small groups and host corporate events

Shoot Me Studios is the edgy, sophisticated photographic studio in Lower Kings Road, Berkhamsted.

Ash Travels is a high quality taxi and mini-bus hire company serving Berkhamsted and the surrounding area.

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