World Champion

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In a world of over 8 billion people to know that you have been singled out as the winner in your chosen field is an incredible honor and achievement!

Lots of hard work and dedication to an industry that I am incredibly passionate about this recognition makes one very proud and certainly opened doors to opportunities that I never dreamed possible!

Hotel Online Special Report
The worlds press reported
 Brett Dungan and Winston Zahra “Named Young Hoteliers of the World 1999” by the IH&RA
Two categories – Independent and Group Hoteliers
Paris, 18 October 1999 Brett Dungan, general manager of Cayley Lodge in Winterton, South Africa, and Winston Zahra, director of operations at the Radisson SAS Bay Point Resort in Malta, have been named Young Hoteliers of the World 1999 by the International Hotel & Restaurant Association (IH&RA).  The award was presented today at the IH&RA Annual Congress, meeting this week in Durban, South Africa.  The Young Hoteliers of the World programme was created with HOTELS magazine, the IH&RAs official journal, in 1992 to recognise outstanding achievement among hospitality professionals under the age of 30.  The award recognises professionalism, commitment to excellence and service to the community among the new generation of hoteliers, said IH&RA CEO Michael Nowlis.  As such, it helps to highlight the important career opportunities offered by the hospitality industry worldwide. This year’s award honours high achievers from both the independent and corporate sectors.  29-year-old Brett Dungan is responsible for the marketing and development of the independent Cayley Lodge, a hotel property in the Drakensberg Mountains in KwaZulu Natal.  He is credited with leading its transformation from a dilapidated, loss-making establishment into one of the most successful properties in the region.  Brett’s marketing initiatives include seizing the opportunity to maximise revenues and boost mid-week occupancies by developing the conference element of the business.  His efforts in marketing and operations have earned him a number of awards, including the South African Tourism Boards Independent Marketing & Promotion Award in 1995.  A graduate of Rhodes University in Grahamstown, Brett was attracted to the industry because it offers a truly diverse range of opportunities that one wouldn’t normally have the 
chance to explore in any other sector.  Brett is vice-chairman of the KwaZulu Natal branch of the Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa (FEDHASA).  He is an executive committee member of the Drakensberg Publicity Association and founding member of the Tourism Business Council in KwaZulu Natal.  He also plays an active role in the local community, making donations to charitable events and ensuring good relations with Inkosi Shabalala, tribal leader of the Amaswazi People who live in the hotels surrounding area and constitute the majority of its workforce.  “We work together to nurture and develop the youth, and assist in their future education.  This is the only way to promote a stable, educated and motivated pool of labour, ” said Brett.  Corporate winner Winston Zahra, also 29, holds a dual role, managing daily operations for both the Radisson SAS Bay Point Resort and Island Caterers Limited, the catering arm of the Island Hotels Group which owns the Radisson.  During the eight years he has headed Island Caterers, it has grown from an idea into the leading outside catering company on the island, with an annual turnover in excess of $4 million and a growth rate of 20% per annum.  Winston, who is Maltese, obtained a degree in Hotel & Catering Management at Portsmouth Polytechnic, UK, where he was designated best overall student.  Today, his priorities include the creation of wealth for all employees of the enterprise, within a structure that promotes 
fairness and ethical work practices.  “Quite simply, I genuinely believe that a hotel is its people, ” he said. ” The management of this area is paramount.”  According to Michael Refalo, Malta’s Minister of Tourism, Winston has “from an early age shown dynamic leadership qualities and an ability to motivate the people around him, combining business acumen with the power to convey a clear vision which augurs well for the tourism sector in this country.”
Proud moments indeed

The award was handed over personally by Sol Kerzner at the international conference

Contact: Caroline Harvey-Gutierrez Director, Media Relations Tel: (33 1) 44 89 94 07,