Great vibes at Taumeasina Resort

By Elizabeth Ah-Hi ,

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SWEET SUCCESS: Taumeasina Island Resort Manager, Nathan Bucknall (far left) and staff, the overall winners of the S.T.A Tourism Excellence Awards and Best Hygiene award.

SWEET SUCCESS: Taumeasina Island Resort Manager, Nathan Bucknall (far left) and staff, the overall winners of the S.T.A Tourism Excellence Awards and Best Hygiene award. (Photo: Elizabeth Ah-Hi)

It’s been a great week for Taumeasina Island Resort.

Last week, the Resort and their staff celebrated sweet success during the S.T.A Tourism Excellence Awards.

The luxury resort has only been in operation for 19 months and under the leadership of General Manager, Nathan Bucknall, the Taumeasina Island Resort team claimed high honours, winning the award for Best Hygiene and the highly sought after Overall Tourism Excellence Award.

The event was attended by more than 300 guests and even though Mr. Bucknall said it was not the first time they had hosted an event of that size, it was a special one for them because it was dedicated to recognizing members within their industry.

Being award winners did not sway Mr. Bucknall and his team from ensuring that they were the perfect hosts providing top class service from the beginning until the end of the awards evening.

“Basically it was a team effort as it always is at Taumeasina,” he said. “Everybody was helping with the plating. You wouldn’t have seen me half of the night because I was in the back with Cecilia and the chef, everyone was out back. Everyone gets together and everyone works together as a team.”

Mr. Bucknall’s management style is hands on and during the evening, he rarely left his team’s side other than when he needed to receive their awards.

“We did 330 plates and three course meals. 

We did a bit of practice in the afternoon and we got it together.

“You need to be hands on, that’s the name of the game. You need to get right in there and motivate your staff along the way, that’s the best way.”

As well as being thrilled to be the winners overall at the S.T.A. awards, Mr. Bucknall was more than satisfied with his team’s performance in making sure that the evening was a success.

“I was really happy with the way the event went off; I think everybody had a good time. The food was presented well, the drink service was good. I think it’s an amazing event for Samoa tourism and the reason for that is that it encourages us to be competitive. Not in a negative sense, but in a positive sense, so it encourages other business to strive to achieve.”

The Taumeasina Resort staff was visibly overjoyed upon hearing the announcement and Mr. Bucknall says the boost that these types of awards give to hospitality staff is invaluable to creating good team spirit and bringing out the best in them.

“I’m seeing my staff today and they are pumped, they’re really excited. It’s good to be recognized and it’s good for the industry. 

“Things like the awards and also the culinary association and chefs’ competition with the Oka fest last week. All that is excellent for Samoa tourism because it creates the friendly competitiveness and year after year you see improvements based on those competitions.”

Mr. Bucknall will be ready for next year’s event and the goal at the Taumeasina Island Resort is to maintain the high standards that they have been recognized for, saying that will be their ultimate challenge going forward.

© Samoa Observer 2016

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