Med City parents looking for a Spanish immersion day care have a new option on the way.
Minneapolis-based Tierra Encantada, which has five centers in the Twin Cities, is working with developer Venstar, LLC. on the construction of a 10,000-square-foot day care building in Northwest Rochester.
Tierra Encantada CEO Kristen Denzer explained that the plan is to break ground this spring on the facility on the southwest corner of the intersection of West Circle Drive and 19th Street Northwest. It will be part of Venstar’s Creekside development on open land, across 19th Street from the Zen Fusion Hibachi & Lounge.
The new center will offer bilingual immersion, diversity education and organic meals cooked on-site by a chef for children age six and younger. The hope is to open in the fall of 2021 with a capacity for about 150 children ranging from infants, to toddlers and pre-K. It will be staffed by a team of about 30 full-time employees.
While the quickly growing Tierra is gearing up for a national expansion, this will be its first Minnesota location outside of the Twin Cities.
“I’ve been interested in Rochester for some time,” said Denzer. She cited Rochester’s educated population, with parents who “value world views” as a good market for her model. Tierra Encantada is also already working with Venstar on another location slated to open in Chicago, so pairing up for this spot made good sense.
Unlike other language immersion programs, Tierra Encantada offers infant care.
“The younger you can start, the better,” she said. “Parents like that they can start with us and then they don’t have to change as the child ages. We offer a complete option for families until their kids go to kindergarten.”
Another unique feature of Tierra Encantada, which translates as enchanted land, is the meals made in an onsite commercial kitchen.
“We offer a whole organic meal program to expand kids' palettes,” said Denzer. “You'll never see chicken nuggets or hot dogs.”