Meet the GirlCrewer #23 Marlene Barcelos-Ferreir: The Waterside Inn & Breakwater Restaurant

“It’s so touching when clients thank you and think you are amazing at your job!”

Meet Social Catering Sales Manager, Marlene Barcelos-Ferreir of GirlCrew Toronto.


Event planning can be a tough industry to enter and while GirlCrew Toronto member, Marlene Barcelos-Ferreira, admits that she has been very lucky after chatting with her, her enthusiasm for the role is undeniable.

After studying Hospitality and Tourism Administration at Centennial College she had imagined that she would look for work in restaurants, but she ended up finding her feet in hotels. “I did my placement at Tourism Toronto in their Client Services Department. I was there a few years and then moved on to the Fairmont Royal York and worked there as a Concierge for 3 years with a short stint at The Sheraton Centre Hotel as well.” Like many others, after getting married Marlene and her husband decided to leave the hustle and bustle of city life behind and move to the suburbs. After settling in Mississauga, the prospect of commuting wasn’t appealing so Marlene looked for work nearer to home. Eventually, she landed a role at The Waterside Inn* a boutique hotel, located in south Mississauga, in Port Credit, a small village by Lake Ontario.

“As the Social Catering Sales Manager here I sell, plan and detail all social events – weddings, bridal and baby showers, birthdays, anniversaries, corporate holiday parties, etc. – all the fun stuff!” This love of event planning is clear to see and it has also spurred Marlene to continue to add to her skill set “I’m also a WPIC certified wedding planner and truly love the industry and helping couples plan all the details for their big day – so rewarding to see something come together from beginning to end! It’s great when you actually enjoy your job!” The Waterside Inn is also home to Breakwater Restaurant, Mississauga’s only CAA Four-Diamond award-winning restaurant. This restaurant is a major draw for the hotel, and for Marlene, the reason behind its popularity is simple “the food and service is fantastic here; and I’m not just saying that!” Marlene has also kindly offered to give our local GirlCrewers a discount if they contact her for an event – so get planning guys as a dinner or brunch in The Breakwater sounds like the perfect treat.

1. What is the best thing about your role?

Meeting so many different people and helping them with their events, especially weddings – it’s the biggest day of some people’s lives!

2. What did you find most challenging about it?

Being as that it is the biggest day of some people’s lives there’s a lot of pressure to make sure it goes perfectly! You don’t get a chance to re-do if not!

3. What is your proudest work-related achievement to date?

Being recognized by clients and reading their reviews after their wedding and the ones they post online on Wedding Wire and EventSource. It’s so touching when clients thank you and think you are amazing at your job!

4. What would be your one tip to others who want to get involved in this industry?

Have patience and be detailed! And truly love what you do and weddings in general.

5. What would be your motto in life, and in work?

Work hard, play harder! I’m a bit of a workaholic, but I enjoy having fun too. Whether it’s going clubbing and dancing, or hitting a bar or baseball game or concert, or just out to dinner and movies with friends. I love being social which is a great thing about GirlCrew!

If you are a GirlCrew member and are interested in being featured in Meet the GirlCrew, just drop me an email at! x

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