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We hosted the 4th Westmorland Gazette Tourism & Business Awards on Friday night. Always an honour to be the venue for such prestigious awards but we were also looking forward to seeing if we could win the Team & Hotel of the Year Awards we'd been nominated for.

Well the night certainly didn't disappoint! Firstly we were welcomed by the usual glamorous hostesses and guided out onto the Kendal Suite terrace to enjoy our pre-dinner drinks. As we were moving down to the Function House for dinner we were also welcomed by a rather 'dishy' Italian looking gentleman who seemed to be collecting glasses. 'Who's he?' asked Finance Director Julie, 'I don't know', exclaimed MD Tim, 'but he needs to get a tray!' It turns out that they were singing waiters complete with 'assistant banqueting manager' and 'executive chef'. They entertained with 'O sole mio', 'Nessun Dorma' and a conga themed 'Is this the way to Amarillo' What a surprise - and we work here! Can't believe it got passed us!

After a fantastic meal as always from Executive Chef Justin and the team, we settled down for the awards and we were first up for Team of the Year - which we won!

As the night wore on we were getting closer and closer to the Hotel of the Year category. This is a category that we have entered every year since the awards started, been shorlisted twice but never won. Given the success we've already achieved this year we thought we had a great chance, but there was that nagging doubt - nobody wins TWO awards on the same night.

Tim was adamant we'd get it and sure enough as the winner was announced it was our name read out! Now winning awards is fantastic, but winning awards in your own hotel is unbelievable!

So we're all buzzing this morning and there's still the prospect of picking up another award next month for Lakeland Hotel of the Year with Lancashire Life Magazine. We need a bigger trophy cabinet!

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