The stars of Australian hospitality and accommodation were honoured at the Australian Hotels Association National Awards for Excellence this week.
The multi-awarded Emirates One & Only Wolgan Valley in NSW was named Best Deluxe Accommodation.
First established as a homestead in 1832 and visited by Charles Darwin in 1836, the property brands itself as “an ultra-luxury, conservation-based resort” set among the spectacular landscape of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area.
Overall Hotel of the Year (Accommodation Division) went to the stunning Circa Morris Nunn-designed MACq01 Hotel in Hobart.
Previously the site of a gallows and home to vats of boiling blubber, the luxury waterfront ‘storytelling hotel’ includes guest rooms inspired by historic local characters, whose life stories are integrated into individual room designs.
The Overall Hotel of the Year (Metropolitan) was won by The Crafers Hotel in South Australia while Overall Hotel of the Year (Regional) went to The Headlands Hotel Austinmer in New South Wales.
Apothecary in Adelaide was crowned the Best Restaurant (Metropolitan) and the Best Restaurant (Regional) gong went to Frogmore Creek in Cambridge, Tasmania.
Amelia Benjamin from Hilton Sydney was judged Hotel Industry Rising Star and the prestigious Chef of the Year was awarded to joint winners – Ashly Hicks from the Garden State Hotel in Melbourne and Nancy Kinchela from Emirates One & Only Wolgan Valley.
Australian Hotels Association national president Scott Leach said the winners, chosen from more than 5000 members nationwide, were the reason Australian hotels continue to lead the world.
“Our staff and venues combine as the heart and soul of our industry,” he said.
“One brings our industry to life each and every day while the other forms its ‘bricks and mortar’ backbone – constantly evolving and changing to ensure we stay at the top of our game.
“The hotel industry is the most dynamic in the nation and a week rarely goes by without the launch of new ideas, renovations or complete re-developments at venues right across the country.
“In a time of great change – when every customer is a potential reviewer – our industry continues to set the standard internationally and I congratulate all nominees and winners.”