Editor's Choice

15913 19 Apr 2024

Hozpitality Group Hosted the Middle East F&B Excellence Awards 2024

The 2nd edition of the awards saw hundreds in attendance; the crowd cheered for their team members, and industry leaders, showcasing the true spirit of community.

The culinary landscape of the Middle East has emerged as a pinnacle destination for gastronomy enthusiasts worldwide. Boasting a plethora of dining establishments offering diverse cuisines crafted by esteemed culinary maestros, the F&B sector in the region is witnessing a remarkable ascent. Recent findings from Statista reveal that the Middle East Food Service Market is valued at approximately 55.65 billion USD in 2024, with projections indicating a substantial growth trajectory. Predictions indicate that by 2034, this market is set to expand significantly, reaching an impressive USD 158.53 billion. This growth reflects a strong Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 11.14% projected over the forecast period from 2024 to 2034.

Maintaining a competitive edge in the dynamic industry requires continual evolution and adaptation. Staying ahead requires a commitment to ongoing research, deep-seated expertise, and relentless perseverance. Over the past decade, the Hozpitality Group has borne witness to the burgeoning growth within the region. It is imperative to recognize the tireless efforts of the teams orchestrating the impressive array of entertainment, culinary, and beverage experiences.

The previous year, the Hozpitality Group launched a groundbreaking initiative: The Middle East F&B Excellence Awards. This platform was established to honor and celebrate the dedicated professionals and resilient teams who tirelessly manage the intricacies of the highly demanding hospitality industry each day. Recognizing these leaders is essential to showcase the immense effort required to transform ordinary events such as birthday parties, anniversaries, and weddings into unforgettable lifetime memories.

In its second edition, the Middle East F&B Excellence Awards showcased outstanding achievements across various categories, from the finest dining establishments to picturesque sunset spots and exemplary fast-food joints. The Hozpitality Group facilitated multiple nominations, enabling industry professionals to garner votes from guests, friends, and peers. Hozpitality Group extends heartfelt wishes to all the winners who triumphed in the finals and received well-deserved accolades during the prestigious ceremony at The Address Sky View in Business Bay on April 15, 2024. To those who came close but didn't clinch victory this time, your dedication and contributions are commendable, and we eagerly anticipate your continued efforts in shaping the flourishing landscape of the Middle East F&B industry.

Special thanks to all our sponsors, DANUBE HOSPITALITY, RESTOFAIR RAK, US BEEF, A&E, TAAZA, GODAWAN, SMOKE LABS, MUD HOUSE, PERONI, FUSCHIA EVENTS, CONVOTHERM, UAE RESTAURANTS GROUP, WELBILT, ZEE TV MIDDLE EAST and ABSOLUTE FRAME, for their generous support in making this event possible. We extend our heartfelt appreciation to Laura Buckwell for her exceptional role as Emcee for the night. Lastly, a big thank you to the Hozpitality team for their dedication and hard work in organizing such a memorable evening."

Here are the rewritten winners for this year's awards:


WINNERS: Personal Categories - 2024

F&B Server of the Year – Hotel

- Silver: Ranjithgoud Kekkerla, F&B Supervisor, TIME Oak Hotel & Suites

- Gold: Goldie Mae Jaralba Duavis, Senior Captain, Mercure Gold Hotel, Dubai

F&B Server of the Year – Independent Outlet

- Silver: Manish Kumar, F&B Server, Asha's Restaurant International

- Gold: Ajith Sukumaran, Team Leader, Zero Gravity

F&B Hidden Gem of the Year

- Silver: Sohail Shoukat, Outlet Captain, The Retreat Palm Dubai MGallery by Sofitel

- Gold: Joyce Tiempo, F&B Administrator, Dusit Thani Dubai

F&B Hostess of the Year

- Silver: Ashika Tamang, Hostess, Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort

- Gold: Sakuni Shihara, Senior Cashier Cum Waitress, Wyndham Garden Ajman Corniche

F&B Marketing/PR Person of the Year

- Silver: Salim Lakdawala, Head of Marketing and eCommerce, Ramada Hotel & Suites by Wyndham Dubai JBR

- Gold: Jasvir Kaur, Cluster Marketing & PR Manager, Wyndham Hotels Ajman - Ramada Hotel & Suites by Wyndham Ajman, Ramada by Wyndham Beach Hotel Ajman, and Wyndham Garden Ajman Corniche

F&B Manager of The Year- Hotel

- Silver: Rajesh Maniraj Gnanaraj, Banquet Manager, Arabian Ranches Golf Club

- Gold: Ayan Bagchi, F&B Manager, Paramount Hotel Dubai

F&B Manager of the Year- Independent Outlet

- Silver: Wasantha Manage, F&B Manager, Riva Beach Club

- Gold: Taline Kastanian, Operations Manager, Kitopi

F&B Director/Leader of the Year

- Silver: Sreejith Purushan, Cluster Director of Food & Beverage, Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Deira Creek

- Gold: Elias Saad, Executive Assistant Manager - In-charge of F&B, Bab Al Qasr

Restaurant Manager of the Year – Hotel

- Silver: Pratheek Rai, Outlet Manager, Fairmont The Palm

- Gold: Elsaid Saad Rakha, Restaurant Manager, Coral Beach Resort Sharjah

Restaurant Manager of the Year – Independent Outlet

- Silver: Ramesh Rajalingam, Restaurant Manager, Zero Gravity

- Gold: Carolyne Wachu Kamanu, Restaurant Operations Manager, The Farm Restaurant

Bar / Beverage Manager of the Year

- Silver: Peter Paul, Bar Manager, Asha's Restaurant International

- Gold: Rajender Singh Rathore, Assistant Restaurant Manager, Millennium Airport Hotel

Hygiene Officer of the Year

- Silver: Surendran Moorkoth, Assistant Chief Steward, Coral Beach Resort Sharjah

- Gold: John Patrick Manicani, General Hygienist, Address Sky View

Barista of the Year

- Silver: Richard Calayag, Barista, Biella - Wafi Hospitality LLC

- Gold: Adelson Joy, Barista, Ramada Hotel & Suites by Wyndham Dubai JBR

Bartender/Sommelier of the Year

- Silver: Aaditya Sharma, Bartender, Republic Adda Bar & Lounge, DoubleTree by Hilton Dubai, Business Bay

- Gold: Gopalakrishnan, Mixologist, Asha's Restaurant International

Culinary Person of the Year – Independent Outlet

- Silver: Gaurav Gaur, Director Culinary, Kitopi

- Gold: Muchie Masunungure, Executive Chef, The Farm Restaurant

Culinary Person of the Year – Hotel

- Silver: Praveen Kumar, Sous Chef, Zero Gravity

- Gold: Mohamed Ibrahim Taha Mustafa, Sous Chef, Coral Beach Resort Sharjah

Restaurateur of the Year

- Silver: Oleksii Kolomiiets and Yuriy Blotskyy, Founders of OY Hospitality Group

- Gold: Tony Habre, Founder & CEO at Addmind Group


WINNERS Corporate Categories

Best Ladies Night

- Silver: Seven Sisters Dubai

- Gold: Raia, Taj Exotica Resort & Spa Dubai

Best Party Brunch

- Silver: Treehouse at Taj Dubai

- Gold: Pool Side Brunch, Address Sky View, Dubai

Best Beach Club

- Silver: Wavebreaker Beach Bar & Grill at Hilton Dubai Jumeirah

- Gold: Zero Gravity, Dubai Marina

Best Rooftop Bar

- Silver: Brick Rooftop Kitchen & Bar

- Gold: Estrella's Rooftop Lounge, The Canvas Hotel Dubai Al Mina Road

Best Sunset Spot

- Silver: The Ritz-Carlton Ras Al Khaimah Al Wadi Desert

- Gold: February 30, The Palm West Beach

Best Steakhouse Grill

- Silver: Roda Grill & Bar - Movenpick Hotel Grand Al Bustan Dubai

- Gold: Seafire Steakhouse

Best Romantic Spot

- Silver: Benjarong Thai Restaurant, Dubai

- Gold: Ossiano

Best Dinner Venue

- Silver: Asha's Restaurant, Dubai

- Gold: Lucia's, Address Sky View Hotel

Best Live Music Venue

- Silver: Up on the 10th at Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Deira Creek

- Gold: Flashback Speakeasy, Paramount Hotel Dubai


Best Restaurant Bar

- Silver: Muse Social House Al Hamra, Ras Al Khaimah

- Gold: Noho Bar and Grill, InterContinental Ras Al Khaimah Mina Al Arab Resort & Spa

Best New Restaurant

- Silver: Sfumato, ME Dubai Hotel

- Gold: Kashkan by Ranveer Brar, Dubai Festival City Mall

Best Restaurant- Casual Dining

- Silver: Vintage Grand Hotel and Branded Residences, Dubai

- Gold: Ultra Brasserie, Gates Hospitality Marina Plaza, Dubai

Best Restaurant- Fine Dining

- Silver: The Theater, Fairmont Hotel, Dubai

- Gold: Signature by Sanjeev Kapoor, The Canvas Hotel, Dubai

Best Restaurant- QSR/Street Food

- Silver: Wingstop UAE 1802, Dubai

- Gold: Chin Chin, Kitopi

Best Outlet- Sweets and Desserts

- Silver: Panini Grand Hyatt Dubai

- Gold: Bikanervala Dubai

Nightclub/Lounge of the Year

- Silver: Estrella's Rooftop Lounge, The Canvas Hotel Dubai

- Gold: Ramsa Lounge, InterContinental Ras Al Khaimah Mina Al Arab Resort & Spa

Restaurant Team of The Year- Hotel

- Silver: The Retreat Palm Dubai MGallery by Sofitel, Dubai

- Gold: The Canvas Hotel Dubai

Restaurant Team of the Year – Others

- Silver: The Farm Restaurant, Dubai

- Gold: Reform Social & Grill, Gates Hospitality The Lakes

F&B Brand of The Year- Delivery

- Silver: Right Bite Express, Kitopi

- Gold: Asha's Restaurant, Dubai


Outside Catering Team of the Year

- Silver: Slices Catering Services

- Gold: Hospitality by Dubai World Trade Centre

Best Homegrown Brand of the Year

- The Mill Café and Bakery, Al Barari

- Gold: Folly, Gates Hospitality Souk Madinat Jumeirah


Judges Choice Awards

Best Open-Air Lounge

- Rooftop at Royal Ascot Dubai

F&B Marketing Person of the Year

- Bilal Kazi, Marketing Manager, Ramee Grand Hotel & Spa

General Manager of the Year

- Andre Grove, General Manager, Arabian Ranches Golf Club

F&B Leader of the Year

- Tarek Daou, Cluster Director of F&B, Erbil Rotana, and Arjaan by Rotana Hotels

F&B Champion of the Year

- Dhiraj Kumar, Director of Food & Beverages, Fujairah Rotana Resort & Spa

Sous Chef of the Year

- SK Nilufar Ali, Sous Chef, Asha's Restaurant International

Culinary Leader of the Year

- Ashish Kumar, Executive Sous Chef, Kinara by Vikas Khanna

Rising Star of the Year

- Ahmed Hammouda, Food & Beverage Manager, Tower Plaza Hotel Dubai

Best Casual Dinner Venue

- Flavours of India, Dubai

Marketing Champion of the Year

- Zakaria Abdelhai, Cluster Marketing Manager, Central Hotels and Resorts

Best Steak House Restaurant

- Beef Bar Restaurant, Dubai

Hidden Gem of the Year

- Prime68, JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai

Culinary Champion of the Year

- Eric Turgeon, Executive Sous Chef, Madinat Jumeirah

Best Local Brand of the Year

- Wise Kwai Thai Restaurant, Dubai