Serena first came to Soul&Surf as a guest and is currently our Head of Service in India managing our cafe SoulFood however she will be joining us for our Portugal PopUp this May as our resident chef!


Serena holding a pineapple. Just because.

What’s your name? – Serena Holliday

What do you do? – Head of Service in our café SoulFood

Where’s Home? – Varkala. London. Yorkshire.

Age: 26

How did you come to be at Soul & Surf?

I came here on holiday in 2015 and loved it so much and made so many friends that I extended my trip. I then got an email from Raff in October this year asking me if I was free and I just couldn’t say no. Before this I was working in London as the Junior Sous Chef at a plant based restaurant. Food has always been the centre of what I do but over the last few years I’ve developed a passion for plant based food. Although I loved what I was doing my work life balance was off kilter so when Raff got in touch I decided to take things in a new direction.

What does Soul mean to you?

It means atmosphere, it means relationships, it means friendships. It’s what makes you tick.

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Gilde, lady, glide

What inspires you about your work?

First and foremost it’s my team. I love getting to work with so many amazing people from around the world who all bring their own energy and story to the mix. I love getting to meet all of our guests, improving someone’s day in even just a small way by delivering good service and high standards means a lot to me, food is such an important part of travelling, it’s something people take away from their holiday.

What’s next for you?

I’m going to Portugal with Adam and Rachel for our PopUp in May which is going to be so much fun! I’m really excited to get back in the kitchen and start cooking again and I feel like this could be a really great next step in my Soul & Surf journey.

What will you be rustling up in the kitchen?

I want to take a bit of Kerala - fish curry, thoran, raita etc. and mix that with authentic Portugese cuisine. I’m going to be using a lot of locally sourced ingredients, lots of delicious fresh fish, fruit & veg and making sure all the meals are healthy and sustainable whilst being as authentic to our surroundings and the SoulFod ethos as possible. I’m looking forward to bringing all the things that I love about here to a new environment.

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