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“The best in world-class product”: NSW rewards its accom superstars

NSW celebrated its stellar hotel performers at the glittering TAA Awards in Sydney last week.

Some 750 award hopefuls and industry figures packed the event, and while host Catriona Rowntree failed to get her party poppers firing, there was no such difficulty for the rowdy winning tables at the Star Sydney gala.

The cream of the state’s hotel industry knows how to party, and those celebrations were topped only by entertainers Furnace And The Fundamentals, whose set redefined ‘high energy’ and brought most of the room to its feet.

James Wyndham, general manager of Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley

Among the biggest winners was Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley, the Blue Mountains sustainability stalwart inducted into the TAA NSW hall of fame in 2019 for its decade-long dedication to excellence.

Sydney’s the Darling Hotel Sydney edged out local rival the Park Hyatt Sydney to win Deluxe Hotel of the Year, while Regional Superior Hotel of the Year went to MGallery by Sofitel’s Fairmont Resort and Spa Blue Mountains, with an honourable mention for runner up Oaks Santai Resort Casuarina.

Metropolitan Superior Hotel of the Year was taken out by Rydges World Square, and Mid-Range Hotel of the Year went to Holiday Inn Sydney Airport, with Atura Albury highly commended.

TAA NSW chair Antony Page said 2019 marked a “new era” for the organisation, with a new board, CEO and swish central Sydney offices.

Outlining TAA NSW’s priorities as representing and advising members, securing lower energy prices sector-wide, addressing skills shortages and pushing for greater short-stay regulation, he took a subtle swipe at the state government over its 35 million cut to the 2019 Destination NSW budget.

“As an industry we have benefited considerably from the state government’s investment in the visitor economy which has seen 47 percent growth since Destination NSW was formed in 2011. This growth is a strong testament to NSW government support and funding,” he said.

“The level of government investment – not only for tourism but for transport infrastructure – is fundamental to supporting confidence in current and planned accommodation.”

While recognising high-achieving venues, the TAA NSW Awards also celebrate the sector’s highest individual achievers across categories ranging from Chef of the Year (Francesco Mannelli of Four Seasons Hotel Sydney) to Housekeeper of the Year (Karolina Sadalska of Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour).

Mr Page described the awards as “an opportunity to celebrate the ‘best in world-class’ product we have here in NSW…and the committed and passionate people who bring that product to life”.

Le Petit Flot

He said: “Once again, according to the judges, there were many very tightly contested categories – a strong testament to the quality of our industry.”

The best hotel eateries were also recognised, with Sydney’s Tank Stream Hotel winning Brasserie/Cafe of the Year for Le Petit Flot, Platform 818 Mercure Sydney crowned Restaurant Of The Year (mid-range – superior hotels) and Altitude Restaurant Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney named Restaurant of the Year (deluxe hotels).

The full list of winners, chosen from more than 300 nominees across the state’s multi-billion-dollar accommodation industry, is:

BEST INNOVATION PROJECT

WINNER The Darling Hotel

OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN TRAINING

WINNER The Langham, Sydney

OUTSTANDING COMMUNITY CONTRIBUTION

WINNER Atura Blacktown

HIGHLY COMMENDED Radisson Blu Plaza Sydney

BEST ENVIRONMENTAL PRACTICES

WINNER Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

WORKPLACE HEALTH AND SAFETY HOTEL OF THE YEAR

WINNER Holiday Inn Darling Harbour

CONFERENCE AND EVENTS VENUE OF THE YEAR

WINNER Fairmont Resort and Spa Blue Mountains, MGallery by Sofitel

HIGHLY COMMENDED InterContinental Sydney

ENGINEER OF THE YEAR

WINNER Matthew Willox Holiday Inn Old Sydney

HIGHLY COMMENDED Viran Yapa Sydney Harbour Marriott Hotel

FINANCE TALENT OF THE YEAR

WINNER Pedro Porto Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour

HIGHLY COMMENDED Matthew Woods Meriton Suites

REVENUE/YIELD TALENT OF THE YEAR

WINNER Elaine Fernandez The Star Sydney

HIGHLY COMMENDED Ben Salter Stamford Plaza Sydney Airport

FOOD AND BEVERAGE TALENT OF THE YEAR

WINNER Maryline Beroud Park Hyatt Sydney

HIGHLY COMMENDED Andrew Hobbs The Star Sydney

CONFERENCE AND EVENTS TALENT OF THE YEAR

WINNER Jessica Johnson Rydges World Square

HIGHLY COMMENDED Courtney Mannes Novotel Sydney International Airport

MARKETING TALENT OF THE YEAR

WINNER Melinda McCrone Crowne Plaza Terrigal Pacific

HIGHLY COMMENDED Sasha McAlister Holiday Inn Sydney Airport

SALES TALENT OF THE YEAR

WINNER Tim Birley PARKROYAL Darling Harbour

HIGHLY COMMENDED Fiona Okpalogu Rydges Newcastle

HUMAN RESOURCES TALENT OF THE YEAR

WINNER Christianne Nejm Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour

HIGHLY COMMENDED Thomas Fitzgerald The Langham, Sydney

ROOMS DIVISION TALENT OF THE YEAR

WINNER Deepamita Dutta Meriton Suites Kent Street

HIGHLY COMMENDED Ramneek Kaur Sir Stamford at Circular Quay

EMPLOYEE EXCELLENCE IN SERVICE

WINNER Roman Bhandari InterContinental Sydney Double Bay

HIGHLY COMMENDED Francisco Cervantes Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour

CONCIERGE OF THE YEAR

WINNER Jonathan Fambart Park Hyatt Sydney

HIGHLY COMMENDED David Reynolds Sir Stamford at Circular Quay

HOUSEKEEPER OF THE YEAR

WINNER Karolina Sadalska Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour

HIGHLY COMMENDED Tarsha Whiteman Fairmont Resort and Spa Blue Mountains, MGallery by Sofitel

CHEF OF THE YEAR

WINNER Francesco Mannelli Four Seasons Hotel Sydney

HIGHLY COMMENDED Shlomi Palensya Park Hyatt Sydney

HOTEL INDUSTRY RISING STAR

WINNER Melissa Davies The Langham, Sydney

HIGHLY COMMENDED Katie Collings Novotel Sydney International Airport

RESTAURANT OF THE YEAR (MID-RANGE – SUPERIOR HOTELS)

WINNER Platform 818 Mercure Sydney

HIGHLY COMMENDED Circa 1876 The Convent Hunter Valley

RESTAURANT OF THE YEAR (DELUXE HOTELS)

WINNER Altitude Restaurant Shangri-La Hotel, Sydney

HIGHLY COMMENDED Darley’s Lilianfels Resort & Spa

BRASSERIE/CAFE OF THE YEAR

WINNER Le Petit Flot Tank Stream Hotel Sydney

BAR OF THE YEAR (MID-RANGE – SUPERIOR HOTELS)

WINNER Sydney Brewery Rydges Sydney Central

HIGHLY COMMENDED The Lovedale Bar Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley

BAR OF THE YEAR (DELUXE HOTELS)

WINNER Alibi Ovolo Woolloomooloo

HIGHLY COMMENDED Observatory Bar The Langham, Sydney

HEALTH CLUB AND SPA FACILITIES OF THE YEAR

WINNER Ubika Spa Fairmont Resort and Spa Blue Mountains, MGallery by Sofitel

HIGHLY COMMENDED The Darling Spa The Darling Hotel

REDEVELOPED/REFURBISHED HOTEL OF THE YEAR

WINNER Novotel Sydney International Airport

HIGHLY COMMENDED Rydges Campbelltown

APARTMENT/SUITE HOTEL OF THE YEAR

WINNER Fraser Suites Sydney

HIGHLY COMMENDED SKYE Suites Sydney

MID-RANGE HOTEL OF THE YEAR

WINNER Holiday Inn Sydney Airport

HIGHLY COMMENDED Atura Albury

METROPOLITAN SUPERIOR HOTEL OF THE YEAR

WINNER Rydges World Square

REGIONAL SUPERIOR HOTEL OF THE YEAR

WINNER Fairmont Resort and Spa Blue Mountains, MGallery by Sofitel

HIGHLY COMMENDED Oaks Santai Resort Casuarina

DELUXE HOTEL OF THE YEAR

WINNER The Darling Hotel

HIGHLY COMMENDED Park Hyatt Sydney

HALL OF FAME REGIONAL DELUXE HOTEL OF THE YEAR

INDUCTEE Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley

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Kate Jackson

Kate Jackson is the editor of Accomnews. You can reach her at any time with questions or submissions: [email protected]

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