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Our Story

My Inspiration

20 years ago, I embarked on a journey that was to truly teach me the meaning of faith. At 17,000 feet above sea level, in the Andes, I witnessed a centuries old pilgrimage unfold before me. People gathered to dance and pray in honor of El Señor de Qoyllur R’iti. It was here that I first learned of the Q’ero, a community said to be the guardians of ancient knowledge. The journey was life changing and out of it was born my vision for what has come to be, El Q’ero, a restaurant of great integrity dedicated to the craft of cooking and the pleasures of dining. Consistent with the“Slow Food Movement,“Q‘econtinues in its quest committed to tradition, great taste, and cooking as an artisan craft which brings communities together in various ways. Above all, we wish to convey a feeling of warmth and pride in the food we prepare. Peruvian and South American cuisine has been the source of my inspiration and the vehicle for the expression of my vision, which reveals itself to me “poco a poco” (bit by bit). We hope you agree and that you will enjoy visiting time and again.

Thank you from my family to yours!

Monica Szepesy
Proud owner of Q'ero
A Third Generation Family Business!

Our Family Story

We come from a long line of travelers.  On Dad's side, Hungary (Abuelo) crossed paths with Ecuador (Abuela).  On Mom's, it was Spain (Bisabuelo), with Italy (Bisabuela). My Dad's parents immigrated to New York City, my Mom's immigrated to a small town outside of Cusco, Peru called Zurite.  Our father joined the Peace Corps and met our Mother in Zurite.  Their story took us around the world, with a career dedicated to the foreign service. 

Growing up in Chile, Jamaica, Pakistan, Honduras, and Bolivia lends a perspective on humanity that I can appreciate so much, especially these days.  Among all of our travels, none had a greater impact than the trips home to Cusco to visit the family.  Cusco is an incredibly beautiful place, with a rich legacy that we are so proud to be a part of.  Our work is a tribute to this legacy as well as to our family, past and present.

Q'ero Travels

Ever since I can remember, Cusco, Peru has felt like home to me.  It was the constant in my life, as we would return every few years from abroad to visit my mother's family. I now understand that my love for Peru runs deeper than the need to connect to a physical place.  It is where I learned about the unconditional love of family.  It is also where I fell in love with a country overflowing with history and culture.  Entering our 20th year in business I am excited to be spreading my wings to take flight and kick off a series of one of a kind curated tours to Peru and beyond.  I hope this inspires you to take flight with Q'erolandia Travels.  

- Monica Szepesy