On February 9th I had the honour to act as compere, for the third consecutive year, at the prestigious Gold Service Scholarship awards held at Claridge’s. What a joy - the ballroom was packed with hoteliers and other VIP supporters of the scholarship which was the creation of Willy Bauer OBE and can now boast Her Majesty The Queen as its patron.
Eight finalists from a diverse range of hospitality operations had competed in a terrifyingly rigorous contest, culminating in a lunch for industry stalwarts at The Connaught a few days earlier. The winner was Daniele Quattromini, Manager at Club Lounge 39 in Canary Wharf, who can now look forward to an exciting year taking advantage of generous prizes from the sponsor companies. Picture shows Daniele (clutching his certificate) with Alastair Storey, chairman of the trustees.
At last we have a competition that can stand alongside the likes of the Roux Scholarship (for chefs) which celebrates excellence in service. And as the outgoing holder of the title, last year’s winning scholar James Fleming reminded us, service in hospitality can offer a very rewarding career indeed.