AA Hotel Services, celebrating the best in hospitality for over 100 years, has announced the winner and runners up of the Housekeeper of the Year Awards 2009.
Rachael Park, head housekeeper at Rudding Park Hotel & Golf in Harrogate, was named the winner of Housekeeper of the Year 2009, after competing with over 60 other nominees for the title.
Rachael commented, "Since leaving catering college and starting my career as an assistant housekeeper, I have always strived to put into this job all of my enthusiasm and dedication to ensure I reach the top and provide our guests with the most comfortable and cleanest hotel possible. I am so proud to have been given this award by the AA, an organisation that in my experience has always had the most stringent of standards."
Rachael started her career in 1977, working as a trainee housekeeper in a 150-bedroom hotel in London, before moving on to roles as head housekeeper at The Old Swan Hotel and The Imperial Hotel, both in Harrogate. Rachael joined Rudding Park, a privately owned hotel near Harrogate, three months before it opened in 1997. She now heads up a team of 12 housekeeping staff, overseeing the housekeeping responsibilities in the bedrooms and public areas, conference facilities, Golf Clubhouse and Golf Academy and self-catering lodge development, as well as contributing to decisions on the interior design process at the hotel.
Giovanna Grossi, AA Hotel Services group area manager, said, "Rachael was selected as the overall winner not only due to her housekeeping standards, which are consistently of the highest quality, but to her commitment to her team of staff and her dedication to her frequently demanding role which she manages with admirable efficiency."
AA Hotel Services introduced the Housekeeper of the Year award in 2008, in partnership with Northmace & Hendon, manufacturers of specialist products for the professional hotelier, to recognise and reward the most diligent and outstanding housekeepers in Britain and Northern Ireland. The award recognises that while many endeavours of a housekeeper often go unnoticed by guests, it is often these very efforts that turn an average hotel into a truly commendable establishment.
Simon Numphud, AA Hotel Services manager, commented, "We are delighted to acknowledge Rachael Park, whose commitment to Rudding Park Hotel and its workforce has produced such commendable results, as the AA Housekeeper of the Year 2009. This year we are also proud to introduce two runners-up, whose dedication and enthusiasm also merit recognition." Michael Plaut, managing director of Northmace & Hendon, added, "Dedicated and professional, housekeepers are the unsung heroes of the hotel sector. We are delighted that Rachael, Sara and Amelia have had their hard work and professionalism recognised through these prestigious awards".
Runners-up for the Housekeeper of the Year 2009 Award are:
Sara Meek, Hartwell House Hotel, Restaurant & Spa, Buckinghamshire
The AA has been recommending and acknowledging hotels since 1908, and last year celebrated 100 years of excellence in the hospitality industry. AA Houskeeper of the Year is a branch of the AA's well-established Hospitality Awards, which cover the finest of all AA-inspected and rated hotels, restaurants, and B&Bs. These accolades are presented in recognition of all-round excellence, unfailing standards and outstanding service, as well as acknowledging the vital role played by those individuals who work to maintain the highest of standards within the industry. The 2009 AA Hospitality Awards event will take place at the London Hilton on Park Lane on 28 September 2009.
AA Publishing produces a series of lifestyle guides, covering every aspect for planning leisure pursuits - from hotels, pubs, B&Bs and restaurants, to days out, golfing, caravanning and camping, or family and pet friendly accommodation - the guides feature over 14,000 inspected, selected and recommended establishments; offering the UK traveller an unparalleled choice of places to stay, eat, drink or play a round of golf in England, Scotland, Wales, Ireland and the Channel Islands.