Tourism leaders gathered at the Old Library, Guildhall in the City of London last night to celebrate London travel businesses and individuals who have gone above and beyond for the London Tourism Awards 2022, hosted by London & Partners.
Competing in 10 categories, including ‘Unsung Hero’ and ‘Resilience and Innovation’, the awards brought London’s tourism industry back together under one roof for the first time in two years.
A lot has happened since the London Tourism Awards 2020, which took place just days before the first national lockdown. The 2022 edition celebrated those who have done great work in the last 12 months, like Neeshal (Nish) Jeewon of the Hilton London Metropole, who won the ‘Unsung Hero’ award.
As lockdown started, Nish took the initiative to work with charity OpenKitchen which redistributed excess food supplies from hotels to local people struggling to purchase and cook good-quality, nutritious meals.
Nish worked to pack and label boxes for those in need every Thursday. To date, over 50,000 meals have been delivered, in partnership with the Felix Project.
As well as this, Nish works with the Down’s Syndrome Association to ‘buddy up’ with disabled people matched into long-term jobs at the Hilton London Metropole.
Inclusive and sustainable
Tourism businesses that are sustainable, inclusive and resilient were highly commended at the awards.
Barbican Centre won the ‘Ethical, Responsible and Sustainable Tourism’ Award for their wide-ranging commitment to sustainability in every aspect of their business, working towards their overall aim to reach net zero by 2027. The Postal Museum was praised for their provisions made for people with disabilities to ensure the innovative exhibition can be enjoyed by all, while Up at The O2 was commended for reopening their thrilling experience just days after Storm Eunice ripped through the roof of the O2 last month.
Barge East, a floating restaurant on a canal in Hackney Wick, was the big winner of the night, winning both the ‘Taste of England’ Award for their delicious menu and taking home the ‘Resilience & Innovation’ Award for their work to help food banks and provide free meals for children, despite facing their own challenges during the pandemic.
Tracy Halliwell, Director of Tourism, Conventions & Major Events at London & Partners, said: “Last night’s London Tourism Awards 2022 acknowledged the challenging time we have faced as a tourism industry over the last few years, but most importantly, we optimistically looked to the future. London is an incredible destination with a world-class mix of hotels, experiences, restaurants, and people. It was fantastic to celebrate all of these at a real, in-person event. With people like these spearheading London’s tourism recovery, I feel confident that London’s future looks bright.”
Full list of London Tourism Award 2022 winners:
- Accessible & Inclusive Tourism Award: The Postal Museum. Highly Commended: Sea Containers London
- Ethical, Responsible & Sustainable Tourism Award: Barbican Centre
- Experience of the Year: Up at The O2. Highly Commended: Skuna Boats
- Large Hotel of the Year: The Langham, London. Highly Commended: Hilton London Metropole
- New Tourism Business Award: The Londoner Hotel. Highly Commended: Terrible Thames Tour by Woods’ Silver Fleet. Highly Commended: The Birmingham Stage Company
- Self-Catering Accommodation of the Year: The Chronicle by Supercity Aparthotels
- Taste of England Award: Barge East
- Visitor Attraction of the Year: London Transport Museum
- Unsung Hero: Neeshal Jeewon, Hilton London Metropole
- Resilience & Innovation Award: Barge East
Winners and highly commended businesses will now automatically go through to the VisitEngland Awards for Excellence at a national level.