Champions of Hospitality Celebrated at 2023 Awards

Winners have been crowned at the fourth Hospitality Awards, organised by The Southampton Region Hoteliers Association. The awards celebrated the high achievers and teams that amplify the best hospitality has to offer in the city region on 3rd February.

Held at Novotel Southampton and hosted by Zoe Hanson from The So SO Show, close to 200 people attended the awards which saw nine winners crowned from three finalists in each category. Working with the Novotel Southampton team, City College catering and hospitality students supported kitchen and waiting staff, enabling them to experience what working in the sector could be like. 

Nominations were submitted in October by members of the Southampton Region Hoteliers Association who were able to put forward colleagues, managers and hotels to be considered for the 9 categories. 89 nominations were received, meaning the sponsors had a tough time whittling them down to 3 finalists per category before chatting further with finalists and then choosing their winner.

Nathan Chart, Chair of the Hoteliers Association said, “This year the awards received the highest number of nominations since their launch in 2019, showcasing the talent, dedication and achievement of those who work across our local hospitality industry. These awards are a great way to recognise individuals, teams and hotels – indeed just nominating colleagues is a great way to show what a positive impact they make to the industry. We hope awards like this help raise the profile of hospitality to encourage future career choices in our wonderful industry.”

The Award Winners on the night, chosen from three finalists for each category were:

Sales & Revenue of the Year Award (Sponsored by The Marketing Collective)
WINNER: Pauline Clitheroe from Balmer Lawn Hotel & Spa

Rising Star of the Year Award (Sponsored by SWJ Events)
WINNER: Alex Taplin from Holiday Inn Eastleigh

Chef of the Year Award (Sponsored by Fire Hospitality)
WINNER: Jonathan Marsden-Jones from Solent Hotel & Spa

Community Award (Sponsored by GO! Southampton)
WINNER: Kieran Foster from Holiday Inn Southampton

Operational Excellence of the Year (Sponsored by Entegra)
WINNER: HarBAR on 6th Team from Southampton Harbour Hotel & Spa

Top Team of the Year Award (Sponsored by HSG)
WINNER: Holiday Inn Express Southampton M27 Jct 7 Team

Manager of the Year (Sponsored by Comax UK)
WINNER: Katie Edwards from Novotel Southampton

Lifetime Achievement Award (Sponsored by Brakes)
WINNER: Gavin Elliott from Alder Hospitality

Outstanding Achievement Award (Sponsored by Headline Sponsor, Radio Taxis)
WINNER: Reece Matcham from room2 Southampton

For the second year running, headline sponsor Radio Taxis, were among those supporting the 2023 awards. Simon May, Chief Executive Officer said, “We sponsored the awards again this year as we know how dedicated hospitality employees are in the Southampton region. As a destination for leisure and business, hospitality in the local area is huge and the awards are a fantastic way to celebrate those individuals, teams and hotels that really shine. We celebrate those nominated, those that reached the finalist stage and of course the winners.”

The not-for-profit awards raised £2,431 for the charity FareShare Southern Central, which was then doubled and rounded up to £5,000 by headline sponsor, Radio Taxis.

FareShare Southern Central are seeing the need for support in the local community ever-increase due to the economic situation.They provide good quality food to charities and community organisations in Hampshire. They support breakfast clubs, food banks, lunch clubs for older people, night shelters, day centres, community cafes and projects supporting vulnerable young people and those with addictions and mental health. Working closely with the food and drink industry they ensure that no good food goes to waste.

Claire Martin, Regional Manager at FareShare Southern Central said To have this event held to support us again is amazing, as you all know the need for support in our area is increasing. The money raised at last year’s event has been used to contribute to three larders in the Southampton area, meaning that we have been able to provide around 23,400 extra meals and the fantastic £5,000 raised at tonight’s awards will again make so much difference to the local community. None of this would be possible without the support of everyone that attends the awards evening.”

A special thanks is to be acknowledged to all sponsors and supporters, without whom the awards would not be possible: Radio Taxis, The Marketing Collective, SWJ Events, Fire Hospitality, Comax UK, Entegra, HSG, Brakes, GO! Southampton, Novotel, Matthew Clark, So SO Show, All Parties and Events, Event Perfection, Trojan Mail & Print, Dave Dodge Photography, Marcus Bailey Magician, 22 Midnight, Hampshire’s Top Attractions, City College Hospitality students.

Photos from the evening can be seen here