HM Awards 2014

2014 HM Awards winners announced

In front of almost 600 hoteliers, industry leaders and major suppliers, the winners of the 2014 HM Awards presented by Sealy have been awarded to some of the Australasian accommodation industry’s brightest stars.

Held at the prestigious Sydney Town Hall on September 5 and hosted by television personality Larry Emdur, the HM Awards have, for the 13th time, recognised the accommodation industry’s finest staff, properties, brands and chains across Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific.

Major winners on the night were Marriott International’s Simon F Cooper (Asia-Pacific Hotelier of the Year), Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group’s Peter Tudehope (Australasian Hotelier of the Year), Park Hyatt Sydney (Hotel of the Year), Hilton (Hotel Brand), Accor Hotels (Accommodation Chain) and Sofitel Melbourne on Collins (Environmental Program).

It was a big night for Park Hyatt Sydney, with the hotel also winning Luxury Hotel, while sister property Grand Hyatt Melbourne won the Upper-Upscale Property of the Year award.

Emirates Wolgan Valley Resort and Spa won three awards on the night (Regional Property, Australian Lodge and Australian General Manager – Joost Heymeijer).

Nearby property Fairmont Resort Blue Mountains MGallery was named Meetings and Conferencing property of the year, an award shared with Four Seasons Hotel Sydney due to a tie in the voting. The owner of the Fairmont Resort Blue Mountains MGallery, Schwartz Family Company Hotels won the Service to the Community Award alongside Wyndham Vacation Resorts Asia-Pacific.

It was a big night for Accor Hotels, with the company winning 10 awards on the night, including: Chain, Meetings and Conferencing property (Fairmont Resort Blue Mountains MGallery), Service to the Community (Schwartz Family Company Hotels), Economy Property (ibis Sydney Airport), Human Resources Associate (John Timson, Academie Accor), Finance Associate (Taurn Abraham, Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour), Hotel Engineer (Anton Van Den Brink, Sofitel Melbourne on Collins), Rising Star (Ramiza Hassan, Mercure and ibis Brisbane), New Zealand General Manager (Wouter de Graaf, Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour) and Environmental Program (Sofitel Melbourne on Collins).

Due to the overwhelming number of entries in the people categories, two winners were awarded in a number of those categories.

Amalgamated Holdings Limited took away four awards, winning: Hotel Interior Design (QT Canberra), Boutique Hotel (QT Sydney), Tech Hotel (QT Sydney) and Rising Star (Michelle Paul, Atura Blacktown).

Pan Pacific Hotels Group also starred, winning: Upscale Property (Parkroyal Darling Harbour Sydney), Food and Beverage Associate (Robin Khurana, Parkroyal Melbourne Airport) and Human Resources Associate (Megan Knoetze, Parkroyal Darling Harbour Sydney).

Whitsundays star Hamilton Island was the recipient of four awards, winning: Resort (qualia), Marketing Campaign, Hotel Chef (Alastair Waddell, qualia), Communications Associate (Sophie Baker).

IHG’s flagship brand InterContinental Hotels and Resorts was one of the top individual brand winners, taking away Business Hotel (InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto), Fijian Property (InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort and Spa), South Pacific Property (InterContinental Bora Bora Resort and Thalasso Spa) and Concierge (James Ridenour, InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto). The Concierge award was shared with Ridenour’s IHG colleague, Fiona Lawson from Crowne Plaza Queenstown in a unique double-win for the company.

Hilton Sydney’s glass Brasserie won best Hotel Restaurant and star employee Carl Middleton was named Hotel Chef of the Year.

Darwin’s Mantra on the Esplanade hotel was named top Midscale Property, while Mantra Group also won the New Zealand Regional Property award for Peppers Bluewater Resort in Lake Tekapo. Mantra Group’s executive team (led by CEO Bob East) were also inducted into the Hall of Fame for their Australian-first of listing on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) earlier this year.

The other Hall of Fame inductee for 2014 was Quest Serviced Apartments’ Chairman Paul Constantinou for taking his company from one property 25 years ago to over 160 today.

Service to the Industry was awarded to Bruce Baird AM, former state and federal politician and current Chairman of the Tourism and Transport Forum for his strong advocacy in the hotel and tourism sector.

Sheraton Melbourne was named Best New Hotel, a tie with TFE Hotels’ Adina Apartment Hotel Bondi Beach.

Other winners included: Fraser Suites Sydney (Serviced Apartment Property), Outback Pioneer Hotel and Lodge at Ayers Rock Resort (Budget Property), Shangri-La Hotel Sydney (Day Spa), Emporium Hotel Brisbane (Hotel Bar), Eichardt’s Private Hotel Queenstown (New Zealand Hotel), Whare Kea Lodge in Lake Wanaka (New Zealand Lodge), Best Western Australasia (Marketing Campaign), Four Seasons Hotel Sydney’s Tara Sullivan (Food and Beverage Associate), Radisson Blu Hotel Sydney’s David Bayly (Sales and Marketing Associate), Quest Rockhampton’s Gerry Bourke (Sales and Marketing Associate), Voyages Indigenous Tourism’s Karena Noble (Communications Associate), Sheraton on the Park’s Christian Schomann (Front Office Associate), Chateau Elan’s Tim McPherson (Front Office Associate), Wyndham Vacation Resorts’ David Elmer (Finance Associate), Crown Towers Melbourne’s Donna Musarella (Housekeeper), RACT Hobart Apartment Hotel’s Paula McGrath (Housekeeper), The Langham Sydney’s Janusz Zaklikowski (Hotel Engineer) and Pacific Resort Hotel Group’s Marcus Niszow (South Pacific General Manager).

The 2014 HM Awards were hosted by HM magazine, presented by Sealy, and co-hosted by AHS, the Blue Mountains International Hotel Management School and Intrust Super.

“HM magazine has again been proud to recognise the industry’s finest hotels, chains and, particularly staff, that have been doing an amazing job over the last 12 months,” said HM magazine Editor-In-Chief, James Wilkinson.

The 2014 HM Awards saw not just a huge crowd, but also a record number of entries with over 3000 this year.

“Sure it’s fantastic when a hotel can be rewarded for its aesthetics, style, design and comfort, but it is the people who work in hotels that give the accommodation industry in Australasia its soul,” he said.

The most popular category again proved to be Rising Star, with over 80 entries received in the 2014 and the calibre on a very high level.

“On behalf of the team at HM magazine and all of our fantastic sponsors this year, congratulations to all of the winners, highly commended recipients and finalists in 2014,” Wilkinson said.

On the night, a significant amount of money (final tallying is still being undertaken) was raised for the Garvan Institute of Medical Research through the Connie Johnson Fellowship in Breast Cancer Research.

Once again, the Australasian hotel industry was right behind a major fundraising drive, with funds this year going to help find a cure for a disease that touches an entire nation.

The 2014 HM Awards were hosted by HM magazine; presented by Sealy; co-hosted by AHS, the Blue Mountains International Hotel Management School and Intrust Super; sponsored by FCS Computer Systems, Foxtel for Business, HotelHome Australia, ISIS Group Australia, Nespresso Australia, Oyster Bay, Prototype Commercial Furniture and San Pellegrino; and supported by the Accommodation Association of Australia (AAoA), A-LIST Guide, Coca-Cola Amatil, EY (formerly Ernst and Young), Jobla, McLaren Vale Beer Co, Spice magazine,, Time Out Melbourne and Time Out Sydney, Tourism Accommodation Australia (TAA) and Travmedia.

To download images from the event, visit