CARRIE MACDONALD, CO OWNER OF THE ROCKPOOL CAFE AND RESTAURANT TALKS TO US ABOUT WINNING A HITA 2014 AND WHAT IT’S DONE FOR BUSINESS.
Winning the Best Informal Eating experience for 2014 was a big surprise and it was a great honour for us, in confirming that our little cafe/restaurant in Cullen was not only eligible but capable of being the best in this particular class.
It quickly became apparent that the award has measurably increased our sales and also brought customers in from further afield. Cullen already attracts a huge number of visitors each year and tourism is vital for the success of local businesses such as ours.
We have had great support locally, not least because people recognise that tourism is a vital industry for the wellbeing of this area. Cullen attracts a huge number of visitors each year and this, coupled with an excellent local trade, is really key to the success of our business.
Most of all, winning the award made us reflect on the experience our customers have at Rockpool, and what we can do to make it even better. The HITA award therefore gave us some renewed perspectives for continuous improvement, as well as providing recognition from others in the industry that all the work we and our team of staff have put in to making Rockpool what it is, has been worthwhile.
Carrie Macdonald, Co-Owner, Rockpool Café and Restaurant
If you think you have what it takes to be a HITA 2015 winner or know someone who passionately works towards making the tourism industry better then you can enter or nominate here www.highland-tourism-awards.co.uk
This year’s categories are –
Most Hospitable Hotel
Most Hospitable B&B/Guest House
Best Holiday Accommodation
Best Informal Eating Experience
Best Restaurant Experience
Best Event or Festival
Best Outdoor/Adventure Experience
Tourism Everyone’s Business (open to community tourism destination management organisations, destination marketing companies, transport operators, retail and entertainment venues)
Best Visitor Attraction
Best Sporting Event
Innovation Award (open to small or large businesses)
Regional Young Ambassador Award (open to people aged 30 or under)
Regional Ambassador Award (open to people aged 31 or over)