The value of awards in aspirational and destination dining

The value of awards in aspirational and destination dining

Duncan Fraser Smith, author of “Create to Plate,” reveals the top five reasons why awards are essential for the success of aspirational and destination dining.

Hospitality-based awards play a significant role in the success of aspirational and destination dining for several key reasons.

Firstly, awards acknowledge and validate a restaurant’s excellent quality and stellar reputation. They play a critical role in helping a restaurant gain new customers, as well as building a loyal following. For example, being awarded a Michelin star, Gault Millau, James Beard Award or a World’s 50 Best Restaurants ranking can elevate a restaurant’s status within its market, create a buzz that ripples through social media platforms and ultimately lead to increased bookings and revenue. By now, we all understand that the most important marketing tool out there is word of mouth, be it physical or digital, and having an award to send out across your digital network is a great tool for engagement and a way of eliciting conversation about the restaurant.

Secondly, if you were ever looking for a sign of relevance, credibility and authenticity, which are the staples of a genuine restaurant offering in the market, restaurant awards can certainly back up your claims.

Thirdly, awards can help differentiate a restaurant from its competitors and highlight its unique selling points. For example, a restaurant that wins an award for sustainability or innovation can use this recognition to showcase its commitment to these values and attract customers who share those same principles, with like-minded recognition.

In addition, awards can be a source of motivation and inspiration for restaurant staff. Winning an award may provide both pride and inspiration for the chefs, waiters and other staff members who work hard to create exceptional dining experiences. This can help to create a positive work environment and improve employee retention, which is essential for maintaining a high level of quality and consistency in food and service. Furthermore, it bears witness to the stellar restaurant where your employee has worked. If you receive a CV from a potential hire that states they have Michelin-starred experience, then you will know the level of service that team members can bring to your business.

Finally, awards can provide valuable feedback and recognition for a restaurant’s owners and managers. By being recognized, they can gain valuable insights into what is working well and what needs improvement in their restaurant. This feedback can help them refine their menu, service and overall approach to create an even better dining experience for their customers. It also constitutes an ego booster.

Whether we as operators acknowledge it or not, we all love awards. They reaffirm that what began as a vision has now been leveled up to the point of meriting acknowledgment and recognition from peers and customers. So, when you receive one, pat yourself on the back, congratulate the team and remember: awards celebrate differentiation, it is a motivator for both the restaurant and its team, and can help attract new customers, as well as building a loyal following. And who knows, maybe this can also help you succeed in the challenging task of recruiting a hospitality champion.

The Cutting Edge Agency

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About author

Rita Ghantous

Rita Ghantous is a hospitality aficionado and a passionate writer with over 9 years’ experience in journalism and 5 years experience in the hospitality sector. Her passion for the performance arts and writing, started early. At 10 years old she was praised for her solo performance of the Beatles song “All My Love” accompanied by a guitarist, and was approached by a French talent scout during her school play. However, her love for writing was stronger. Fresh out of school, she became a freelance journalist for Noun Magazine and was awarded the Silver Award Cup for Outstanding Poetry, by The International Library of Poetry (Washington DC). She studied Business Management and earned a Masters degree from Saint Joseph University (USJ), her thesis was published in the Proche-Orient, Études en Management book. She then pursued a career in the hospitality industry but didn’t give up writing, that is why she launched the Four Points by Sheraton Le Verdun Newsletter. Her love for the industry and journalism led her to Hospitality Services - the organizers of the HORECA trade show in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Jordan, as well as Salon Du Chocolat, Beirut Cooking Festival, Whisky Live and other regional shows. She is currently the Publications Executive of Hospitality News Middle East, Taste & Flavors and Lebanon Traveler. It is with ultimate devotion for her magazines that she demonstrates her hospitality savoir-faire.

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