Marcellus arrived at Ayers Rock Resort in 2017 to obtain a Certificate III in Hospitality offered through our National Indigenous Training Academy. He entered the program with a keen interest in working with food, but no previous experience in food and beverage – just a desire to learn as much as possible and do a great job.
“It was a great opportunity for me to watch, learn and help me decide that I do want to work in a kitchen as a chef in the future,” Marcellus says of his early days at the resort.
After completing the first year of his apprenticeship with flying colours, Marcellus was thrilled to receive ‘Apprentice of the Year’ from Charles Darwin University for 2019. He was also a valuable member of Desert Gardens Hotel’s Arnguli Grill Restaurant, contributing to the achievement of the Hospitality NT Gold plate award for Best Hotel Restaurant in 2019.
Marcellus is now pursuing his Certificate III in Commercial Cookery, working in the kitchen at Sails in the Desert under the watchful eye of the experienced senior chefs. Marcellus even had the opportunity to work with celebrity chef Hayden Quinn, who was at the Resort recently shooting an episode of the TV program Taste of Australia. Marcellus was asked to assist the famous chef, and handled the situation like a pro.
Marcellus grew up locally in Alice Springs. His mother was Warlpiri and his father was Warumungu and he grew up learning both his parents’ culture and language. As a child he foraged for native ingredients like bush tomatoes with his family out of tradition – he didn’t realise until he started working for Ayers Rock Resort that these ingredients are now produced at a commercial level. Today, Marcellus loves sharing his culture and heritage through the food he prepares.