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Hotel Receptionist of the Year

26 March 2009

The great and the good of the Northern Ireland hotel industry gathered at the Tullyglass Hotel in Ballymena at a gala award ceremony on 26th March to announce the winners of the 2009 Hotel Receptionist of the Year competition.  The event is in its sixth year and this year saw a record entry with 75 contestants taking part.  NIHF president Issam Horshi said “This is a great competition. It is a chance for us to recognise those at the front line and to reward them for the contribution to the industry. The Northern Ireland visitor experience relies heavily upon reception staff and we are delighted with the positive feedback on their performance from all the judges. Unfortunately we can only have one winner but to me everyone who entered the competition is a winner in their own right.”

Pete Snodden, Cool FM DJ, compered this year’s proceedings enjoying lively banter with all the finalists and quelling nerves during the build up to the announcement of the winners. The first category to be awarded was the Hotel Reception team supported by Northern Ireland Tourist Board which was won by Hastings Culloden Estate & Spa. This five star establishment got a five star rating from judges who were impressed with the professional and friendly service. Second place went to first time entrants the Lodge Hotel, Coleraine with the Park Avenue Hotel, Belfast coming third. There was a very strong entry in this category with the shortlisted finalists having a mystery shopper visit, test phone calls and email enquiries. The judges expressed positive comments on the overall Northern Ireland experience, the professionalism of staff and the high standard of customer service.

Next up, the first of the individual categories, the Most Promising Hotel Receptionist of the Year, which recognises those new to the industry and in the role less than six months. This went to Marie Compier from the Armagh City Hotel. Marie impressed the judges with her mature attitude to the business and her excellent communication skills. This category was supported by Diageo Northern Ireland.

The main category which seeks to find the best receptionist in Northern Ireland was won by Nicola Porter from the City Hotel, Derry. A particularly strong entry from the maiden city made for a close run race with another L’derry Girl, Margaret McPhillips from Hastings Everglades Hotel securing second place. Margaret is no stranger to the competition having won the most promising title in 2006. Coca-cola HBC NI sponsored this part of the competition under their Appletiser brand and have been associated with the competition as far back as 1974.  

The awards ceremony complete, the contestants enjoyed an evening of celebration with champagne corks popping around the room. A true celebration of the best of the hotel industry enjoyed by all!


This years winners:

Hotel Receptionist of the Year: Nicola Porter, City Hotel Derry

2nd Place: Margaret McPhillips, Hastings Everglades Hotel

Category sponsored by Appletiser

Most Promising Receptionist of the Year: Marie Compier, Armagh City Hotel

Category sponsored by Diageo Northern Ireland

Hotel Reception of the Year: Hasting Culloden Estate & Spa

2nd Place: Lodge Hotel Coleraine

3rd Place: Park Avenue Hotel, Belfast

Category sponsored by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board


Photos of the evening can be viewed at:


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