The Mersey Partnership, the tourist board for the Liverpool city region, held its tourism awards last night at the BT Convention Centre on the city's waterfront.
The awards were hosted by BBC television presenter Ranvir Singh and had more than 520 guests in attendance for the black tie dinner.
An independent panel undertook the judging process to review the achievements of over 100 entrants from a variety of large and small tourism businesses. The second round of judging included a series of 'mystery shop' visits to entrants in selected award categories.
Ian Ayre, chair of The Mersey Partnership visitor economy committee and Liverpool Football Club's commercial director, said: "The visitor economy plays a vital role in the success of Liverpool city region, and the TMP Tourism Awards recognise the quality and excellence on offer to our visitors. The destination's appeal is as strong as ever thanks in no small part to the contribution made by all of tonight's finalists and all the other businesses that make up this vibrant sector of our economy."
David Andrews, director of visitor economy for The Mersey Partnership, added: "TMP's Tourism Awards are an excellent way to recognise and reward the hard work undertaken by both small and large Visitor Economy businesses during the past 12 months. Individually they are all achieving notable success. Collectively, as part of our destination offer they are contributing to a great success story. These Awards recognise that success and once again raise the profile of our destination and all it has to offer visitors."
A total of 15 awards were presented on the evening. The winners of each category were as follows:
- Excellence in Customer Service – Stuart Cockburn, Formby Hall Golf Resort and Spa *
- Tourism Marketing Project of the Year – The Beatles Story
- Performance Venue of the Year – Echo Arena Liverpool
- Excellence in Business Tourism – Conference Centre at LACE *
- Bar of the Year – The Wro Bar & Lounge
- Taste Liverpool – 60 Hope Street *
- Small Visitor Attraction of the Year – Acorn Farm *
- Large Visitor Attraction of the Year – The Beatles Story *
- Self Catering Accommodation of the Year – Herons Well *
- Guest Accommodation of the Year – Knowsley Hall *
- Sustainable Tourism – Jurys Inn Liverpool *
- Tourism Retailer of the Year – Liverpool Cathedral
- Tourism Experience of the Year – Grosvenor's Liverpool One *
- Tourism Event of the Year – A Winter's Trail *
- Hotel of the Year – Hope Street Hotel *
* Indicates the eligible winners who automatically go through to the England's Northwest Tourism Awards, organised by the North West Development Agency, which take place on 29 September at The Point venue, located at Lancashire County Cricket Club's ground. Winners of the regional awards may then be eligible to go forward to the national Enjoy England Tourism Awards in 2011.