The Soul of hospitality

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                          The “Soul” of hospitality
Auckland Viaduct’s Soul Bar & Bistro scooped top honours at the hospitality industry’s

national training awards on Monday night, picking up the HSI Supreme Award for

Excellence in Training and Innovation.

The awards, organised by the Hospitality Standards Institute (HSI), recognise the

country’s top players in hospitality training.

Soul’s Co-owner/General Manager Judith Tabron also joined an illustrious group of New

Zealand hospitality figures by being awarded the title of “HSI Ambassador of the Year”.

Judith has built up a successful career as a chef and restaurateur around the world after

starting as a cookery apprentice at the age of 16. Her HSI Ambassador status recognises

her commitment to mentoring young hospitality talent.

Soul’s strong focus on training across all areas of their business saw them take the award

for Excellence in Training in a café, bar or restaurant. The popular restaurant offers

modern apprenticeships and traineeship programmes in both cookery and food and

beverage, as well as leadership training for managers.

HSI’s Chief Executive Steve Hanrahan says the Supreme Award winner shows that having

skilled staff can provide a competitive advantage. “In the customer-oriented hospitality

industry, having great service and top-quality food is key. Soul has invested in both, and

HSI                            HSI Award Winners – 7 July 2008                       Page 1
their solid training programmes upskill their staff and provide customers with the best

experience possible,” Mr Hanrahan says.

Other award winners included Papakura High School, who offer students a new HSI Marae

Catering qualification as part of their hospitality courses, and won the Excellence in

Training: School Award. Millennium Hotels & Resorts was also recognised for their

nationwide excellence in training in an organisation.

Mr Hanrahan says the awards acknowledge the achievements of hospitality trainers,

employers and training organisations throughout New Zealand. “It’s fantastic to see these

deserved winners recognised for their hard work and commitment to training. The

standards of the award finalists are getting higher every year and HSI are also working

hard to ensure New Zealand has a skilled hospitality industry in the future,” Mr Hanrahan


The awards formed part of HSI’s Annual Conference, held at Auckland’s SKYCITY. Keynote

speakers included Mark Hawthorne, Managing Director of McDonald’s New Zealand;

Debbie Mayo-Smith, a productivity expert; Chief Executive of Business New Zealand, Phil

O’Reilly; author and learning specialist, Gordon Dryden; and Zac de Silva, Managing

Director of Barkers Men’s Clothing.

As the hospitality industry’s training organisation (ITO), HSI leads access to training and

qualifications for the hospitality industry, including overseeing, supervising, assisting and

reviewing all nationally recognised training for chefs, waiters, baristas, bar persons,

porters, hotel receptionists, room-attendants, house-keepers, supervisors and


HSI also provides support and guidance to schools, polytechnics and providers that teach

and assess Unit Standards through hospitality courses.

HSI                            HSI Award Winners – 7 July 2008                           Page 2
Category winners for the awards announced on Monday were:

HSI Supreme Award for Excellence in Training and Innovation:

Soul Bar & Bistro, Auckland

Registered Workplace Assessor of the Year:

Sue Bartlett, FIGJAM Creations Ltd

Excellence in Training: Organisation:

Millennium Hotels & Resorts, Nationwide

Excellence in Training: School:

Papakura High School, Auckland

Excellence in Training: Training Provider (workplace partnerships):

The Career Planning Centre (T/A Career Network)

Hospitality Tutor of the Year:

Jay Chapman, TREEHOUSE

Excellence in Training: Workplace (café, bar, restaurant):

Soul Bar & Bistro, Auckland

Excellence in Training: Workplace (accommodation):

Copthorne Hotel Durham Street, Christchurch

Excellence in Training: Workplace (catering):

Department of Corrections – Canterbury Regional Prison

Excellence in Training: Qualification Pathways:

NorthTec, Northland

Training Product of the Year:

e-Blended Learning Solutions Ltd, Auckland

HSI                                  HSI Award Winners – 7 July 2008   Page 3
Workplace Trainer of the Year:

Bob Thomas, Artisan Consulting

NZ-UK Link Cookery Modern Apprentice of the Year

Thomas Williams, The George Hotel, Christchurch

Southern Hospitality Food and Beverage Modern Apprentice of the Year

Morgan Matich, SKYCITY, Auckland

                                         /ends (604 words)

For further information, to arrange an interview with Steve Hanrahan of HSI or award winners or for
photos of the winners, please contact:
        Kim Watson
        Ph (04) 385-7663
        Mob (021) 235-7305

HSI                              HSI Award Winners – 7 July 2008                             Page 4