Heart of Warrandyte takes some beating

by Sandi Miller
10th June 2024

THE PINNACLE event of the Victorian hospitality industry took place at Crown Palladium last month, with a diverse array of venues and influential figures in the sector being honoured in 40 distinct categories during the gala dinner and awards ceremony.
A crowd of 1,200 attendees gathered at Crown Palladium for the highly anticipated 2024 AHA (Vic) State Awards for Excellence, where the industry’s strengths and successes were honoured.
The team from the Grand Hotel Warrandyte were hopeful of taking out at least one of the six categories they were in the running for.
Paddy O’Sullivan, CEO of AHA (Vic), said the awards celebrated the hospitality delivered through Victoria’s remarkable pubs and hotels.

“The Awards recognised the significant commitment and dedication of our publicans, hoteliers, and their staff,” said Mr O’Sullivan.

Tabcorp is a major sponsor of the event, and CEO Paul Carew praised the hotel industry’s resilience.

“A few years back, we were dealing with the pandemic, and more recently, we have seen pubs working through economic challenges like inflation and cost of living.
“Despite these challenges that you all face, you still show up for your customers, day in and day out, and for that unwavering dedication, you should be recognised,” he said.

The Grand team took out the prestigious Heart of the Community for the second time in four years.
Grand Hotel Warrandyte’s General Manager Peter Appleby said the Grand is a proudly community-focused pub.

“To win this award is a testament to the Grand family and the entire Warrandyte community.
“We love to support all organisations in and around town, the local kids through employment, and those in need when it matters most.”

He said the award was judged via a written submission, which allowed them to highlight all that the team at the Grand does.

“From meat tray raffles and subsequent donations to those in need, to the volunteering of our senior management teams time to support, guide, and educate groups in our community, along with providing a safe space for the many mental health organisations within our community.
“When Warrandyte needs help, we are there to assist.
“We can’t thank our entire Grand team enough for all their efforts to support, donate, raise awareness and participate in so many community activities that led us to win this most prized award,” he said.

The Grand was also Victorian state finalists for a further five awards:

  • Best Function and Event Space — Metro Best Outdoor Experience — Metro
  • Best Marketed Hotel Parma of the Year
  • Best Overall Hotel of The Year — Metro.

The winners of each category are now in the running for the National awards, which will be announced in November.
The Grand is the heart of Warrandyte, and we reckon it deserves to be the Heart of Australia, too!
Best of Melbourne The Grand Hotel Warrandyte and Biddicks Bakery are also strong contenders for radio station Triple M’s Best of Melbourne competition.
There is still a chance to vote for your favourite Coffee, Parma, Bakery, Kebab, Pub, Takeaway, and Sports Club Canteen at www.triplem.com.au/melbourne.
Voting is open until June 14.