A night of winners at Leicestershire Tourism and Hospitality Awards 2018

A total of 26 local businesses were crowned winners at a glittering ceremony at Athena in Leicester on 29 November to celebrate the Leicestershire Tourism & Hospitality Awards 2018.

Winners included restaurants, hotels, visitor attractions, cafes, food producers, farm shops, tearooms, pubs, event venues, B&Bs, festivals and events, and Market Towns. The final award of the evening was Tourism Superstar and was presented to James Bowie, former owner of The Belmont Hotel in Leicester whose family ran the hotel for over 80 years.

Now in its 8th year, the awards are aimed at finding the best tourism businesses in Leicestershire and this year, around 100 businesses submitted over 190 applications for this year’s categories. The awards are hosted by Leicestershire Promotions and this year, corporate sponsors included Everards, NVG, Pear Communications, Leicester City Council and Leicestershire County Council.

The winners are below:
Proud of Our People

Best Team
Winner: The Link Hotel
Highly Commended : Field Sport UK
Commended: Century Theatre, Best Western Yew Lodge Hotel

Inspiring Manager
Winner: James Webster – The White Horse
Highly Commended: Esme Ditano – The White Peacock

Rising Star
Winner: Harry Sutton – John’s House
Highly Commended: Chris Hewitt – College Court, Mark Barker – Best Western Yew Lodge Hotel, Olivia Azzouzi – King Richard III Visitor Centre

Best Customer Service
Winner: Lakeside Bistro
Highly Commended: College Court, Barkers Interiors

Best Local Food & Drink Producer
Winner: Gelato Village
Highly Commended: The Bee Farmer, Cocoa Amore

Great Places to Eat and Drink

Outstanding Contribution to Gastronomy
Winner: John Duffin, John’s House

Best Formal Dining Experience
Winner: The White Peacock
Highly Commended: Taste Restaurant at Leicester College

Best Leicestershire Breakfast
Winner: Tithe Barn
Highly Commended: The Café Next Door

Best Casual Dining Experience
Winner: Boboli
Highly Commended: Lakeside Bistro, Winstanley House

Best Local Food Retailer
Winner: Waterloo Cottage Farm
Highly Commended: Farndon Fields Farm

Best Afternoon Tea
Winner: The Café Next Door
Highly Commended : Lakeside Bistro, Stonehurst Farm - The Farmer’s Den
Commended: Rose Cottage, Tylers Tearooms

Best Pub Experience
Winner: The Real Ale Classroom
Highly Commended: Griffin Inn

Best Cocktail Experience
Winner: The White Peacock
Highly Commended: The Fish & The Chip

Great Places to Stay

Most Enjoyable Stay - Hotel
Winner: College Court
Highly Commended: Best Western Ullesthorpe Court Hotel, The Belmont Hotel

Most Enjoyable Stay - Guesthouse
Winner: Holywell House

Most Enjoyable Stay – Self Catering
Winner: Brook Meadow
Highly Commended: Eye Kettleby Lakes, Foxton Locks Lodges, Mallory Meadows
Commended: Fair Farm Hideaway, Boutique Narrowboats

Winner: Bruntingthorpe Events
Highly Commended : Imago
Commended: National Space Centre

Fabulous Things to Do

Favourite Festival – Paid Entry
Winner: Timber Festival
Highly Commended: Bosworth Medieval Festival

Favourite Festival – Free Entry
Winner: Market Bosworth Festival Big Weekend
Highly Commended: Market Harborough Carnival, Snap Dragon Festival

Favourite Event – Free Entry
Winner: Loughborough Fair

Great Day Out – Activity
Winner: Archery Legends
Highly Commended: Field Sport UK

Great Day Out – Small Visitor Attraction
Winner: Stonehurst Farm
Highly Commended: Wistow Maze

Great Day Out – Large Visitor Attraction
Winner: National Space Centre
Highly Commended: Twycross Zoo

Best Town or Village
Winner: Market Harborough
Highly Commended: Ashby de la Zouch

Best Shopping Experience
Winner: Ashby de la Zouch
Highly Commended: Loughborough
Commended: Ferrers Gallery

Best Outdoor Experience
Winner: Greenwood Days
Highly Commended: Heather Scarecrow Festival

Best Night Out
Winner: Haunted Heritage
Highly Commended: Loughborough Town Hall

Tourism Superstar
Winner: James Bowie, The Belmont Hotel

Martin Peters, Chief Executive of Leicestershire Promotions said: “This year’s awards have been an amazing success with more applicants than ever from a broad cross-section of the Leicestershire tourism industry. The judges really had their work cut out in the face of intense competition from such an amazing list of finalists. We offer our hearty congratulations to all of the deserved winners who represent Leicestershire so magnificently to all visitors to the city and county.”