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Hospitality leaders honoured at AHA awards

Robert DoughertyBroome Advertiser

Kimberley restaurants and hotels had a strong showing at the 2016 Australian Hotels Association Hospitality Awards for Excellence last week.

Venues were recognised for their success and dedication to the industry at a gala awards night at Crown Perth on November 7.

Broome’s Kimberley Accommodation won the outstanding commitment to workforce development practices award, The Mangrove Hotel collected the award for WA’s best outdoor area for the second year in a row and Fitzroy River Lodge’s Benita McGinty won the front office and administration employee award.

Matsos Broome Brewery brand and events manager Justin Wiebrecht accepting the Outstanding Commitment to Workforce Development Practices Award on behalf of Kimberley Accommodation. Photo: Australian Hotels Association Western Australia
Camera IconMatsos Broome Brewery brand and events manager Justin Wiebrecht accepting the Outstanding Commitment to Workforce Development Practices Award on behalf of Kimberley Accommodation. Photo: Australian Hotels Association Western Australia

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AHA WA chief executive Bradley Woods said the industry was a constant vision of self- improvement and stressed the importance of hotels, bars and dining venues in the WA economy.

“WA’s hospitality venues provide world-class food, beverages, service and atmosphere to locals and visitors from interstate and overseas,” he said.

“When it comes to quality, the bar is raised higher every year, and judging the awards is not easy.

“WA’s hotels, bars and dining venues are playing an ever-increasing role in the State’s economy, and it’s important to recognise the hard work of the people who make it all happen.”

Forty-two awards were presented including WA’s best small bar, WA’s best regional casual pub dining, WA’s best boutique brewery and WA’s best restaurant.

Kimberley Accommodation was also a finalist for WA’s best training initiative award.

KA human resources manager Michelene Rigby said the company had used programs such as a two-year traineeship program to bring stability to its workforce.

“We have a strong focus on in-house training, up-skilling and, wherever possible, promote internally within the company,” she said.

“Existing hospitality professionals team up with the trainees and teach them the necessary skills required to perform the role at the level expected by the company; both myself and the general managers at the property are also required to mentor these trainees.

“It has enabled employees to recognise the hospitality industry as a career, motivated other staff who are not on the program to utilise the offer of further training and development.”

Matso’s Broome Brewery made the finals for the boutique brewery award, while Mangrove Hotel and Zanders at Cable Beach contested the redeveloped venue prize. Fitzroy River Lodge and the Mangrove Hotel were finalists for the casual pub dining award in the regional category.

WA’s Best Regional Hospitality Venue was challenged by the Kimberley’s Fitzroy River Lodge, Matso’s Broome Brewery, and Zanders at Cable Beach.

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