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2014 Tourism Award winners announced

30 May 2014

The 2014 NI Tourism Awards took place at Belfast’s Ulster Hall last night.

The Awards, now in their 36th year, recognise the very best of the local industry.  Organised by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board in partnership with Diageo Northern Ireland, this year the awards spanned nine different categories and three special awards.

In the NI Tourism Hero category, which acknowledges an individual’s involvement and impact on local tourism, the award went to Belfast chef Niall McKenna.

The UK City of Culture, which helped redefine Derry~Londonderry’s tourism landscape, scooped the Outstanding Contribution to Tourism award.

Other winners included family run butcher O’Doherty’s renowned for its range of specialty bacons – it won the Taste of Northern Ireland category. The Shola Coach House B&B in Portrush scooped best Serviced Accommodation, while HBO took away the award for Global Ambassador.

NITB Chairman Howard Hastings said: “Clearly our industry has been going through a transformational period, one which has seen a seismic shift in how our destination is perceived around the globe, and indeed how we see it ourselves.

“Over the past few years Northern Ireland has achieved a massive amount and tonight is about celebrating the best practice, the innovation and the creativity that has helped put us there.”

The full list of winners is follows:

Best Visitor Experience
Sponsored by Tourism Ireland
Winner – Belleek Pottery Visitor Centre
Highly commended – Crumlin Road Gaol
Highly commended – Castle Ward
Commended – SS Nomadic

Customer Service Excellence
Sponsored by DEL & People 1st
Winner – Rayanne House
Highly commended – Belmore Court & Motel
Commended – Crumlin Road Goal

Hotel of the Year
Sponsored by Invest NI
Winner – Lough Erne Resort
Highly commended – City Hotel Derry
Commended – Malone Lodge Hotel
Commended – The Enniskillen Hotel

Serviced Accommodation of the Year
Winner – Shola Coach House B&B
Highly commended – Belmore Court & Motel
Highly commended – Rayanne House
Commended – The Anchorage Inn

Non Serviced Accommodation of the Year
Winner – Tepee Valley Campsite
Highly commended – Ballygally Holiday Apartments
Commended – Irish Landmark Trust

Taste of Northern Ireland
Winner – Fermanagh Black Bacon, O’Doherty’s Fine Meats
Highly commended – Broughgammon Farm
Commended – Belle Isle Cookery School

Best Event/Festival of the Year
Winner – Fleadh Cheoil 2013
Highly commended – Culture Night Belfast 2013
Commended – Open House Bangor 2013

Best Use of Digital/Social Media
Sponsored by Tourism Ireland
Winner – Culture Company 2013 (Culture NI)
Highly commended – Ulster Bank Belfast Festival at Queen’s 2013
Commended – Festival of Light, National Trust
Commended – Henorstag.com

Innovation Award
Winner – Visit Belfast & Belfast City Council (The new Visit Belfast Welcome Centre)
Highly commended – City Hotel Derry (The Collection)
Commended – Belfast City Sightseeing (The Belfast Golden Ticket)

NI Tourism Hero
Niall McKenna

Outstanding Contribution to Tourism
UK City of Culture

Global Ambassador
HBO

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