Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort General Manager Peter Hopgood has been named the winner of HM Magazine’s prestigious Ashley Spencer Service to the Hospitality Industry Award.
Mr Hopgood was presented with the award at the 2016 HM Awards for Hotel and Accommodation Excellence held in Sydney and attended by more than 700 leading hospitality figures from Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific.
At the same ceremony the Kelley family, founders of the Outrigger Enterprises Group in 1947, was inducted into the HM Awards Hall of Fame along with the Carlson Nelson family of the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group and the Schwartz family of Schwartz Family Hotels.
The Ashley Spencer Service to the Industry Award acknowledges those individuals who throughout their hospitality careers, have supported the community and the environment.
Editor-In-Chief of HM Magazine and founder of the HM Awards, James Wilkinson, said Mr Hopgood had been selected for his never ending work on behalf of the Fijian hotel industry and in support of local Fijian communities.
“The recipient of the award is selected by myself and is about recognising an individual who has achieved excellence through service to the hotel industry in Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific.
“I only recognise someone if it is determined that they have gone above and beyond on behalf of the hotel industry,” Mr Wilkinson said.
President and CEO of Outrigger Enterprises Group, Mr David Carey, said Mr Hopgood was a true ambassador of ‘The Outrigger Way’ and the ‘Bula Spirit’.
“He provides culturally authentic and engaging experiences for his guests while also caring deeply for his hosts and the place itself,” he said.
Mr Carey said Mr Hopgood’s achievements included hosting United States eye surgeons who helped save the eyesight of local Fijians, protecting the environment by launching a ‘No plastic, that’s fantastic’ program, orchestrating the construction of a maternity ward at a local hospital and the building of a community bure and kindergarten at a local school.
“His passion for helping others others’ knows no bounds,” Mr Carey said.
Mr Hopgood said he was both honoured and humbled to receive the award as it encompassed all of the hotels and resorts in Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific.
It was the first time that the award had been made to a Fijian resident.
“You enter the hospitality industry because you are passionate about what you do and to be acknowledged in this way is just incredibly rewarding,” he said.