A Llangollen restaurant and bar has been named North Wales’s best eatery at the region’s tourism Oscars.
The Three Eagles Bar and Grill’s successful transformation to provide an outdoor dining offer won them the Go Taste of North Wales, sponsored by Bwydlyn Butchery.
A delighted restaurant manager Lydia Davies said: “We’ve got a really good team here doing lots of hours and their hard work has paid off.
“We made a really big change because we wanted the Bar and Grill to be more accessible and we’ve opened up our outdoor space which has really helped us because as well as our regulars we’ve got lots of visitors coming in.
“We get lots of walkers and cyclists and people walking their dogs and Llangollen itself is a great attraction and an outdoorsy place.”
The Three Eagles received its accolade at the Go North Wales Tourism Awards, a glittering event at Venue Cymru in Llandudno sponsored by leading food distribution company, Harlech Foodservice, and hosted by acclaimed journalist Sian Lloyd who hails from Wrexham.
The occasion was also a 30th anniversary celebration for organiser North Wales Tourism which was founded in 1990 and now represents more than 1,500 members across the region.
Marine Holiday Park, in Rhyl was also among the Denbighshire winners, picking up the Thornley Leisure Parks Go Holiday Park of the Year and owner Samantha Williams said: “We’ve been here 15 years and this has been the toughest but we’ve got through it and that’s down to Team Marine.
“We reopened on March 1 this year just hoping that people would still come to beautiful North Wales and they have so North Wales is the real star of the show – it’s absolutely brilliant.”
Glenn Evans, from Llanbedr, near Ruthin, owner of the Royal Oak Hotel, Betws y Coed, was also among the winners as he received the Aber Falls Distillery Tourism and Hospitality Hero award.
He said: “I’ve got a fantastic team behind me at the Royal Oak and for me this award is for them as they’ve been through so much.
“It’s still challenging but I’m grateful to be still open and welcoming guests in.”
Denbighshire winners: Thornley Leisure Parks Go Holiday Park of the Year, Marine Holiday Park, Rhyl; Pero Foods Ltd Go Pet Friendly Award, Y Shed, Meliden; Bwydlyn Butchery Go Taste of North Wales Award, Three Eagles Bar and Grill, Llangollen; Design To Print Go Activity of the Year, Mynydd Sleddog Adventures, Llyn Brenig and Alwen Reservoir.
According to Chair of the judges Jim Jones, the chief executive of North Wales Tourism, the amount of investment going into improving the infrastructure of the tourism and hospitality sector was a vote of confidence in the future of the industry in North Wales.
Before the pandemic, the tourism industry was flying with the overall income generated increasing to an all-time high of £3.6 billion in 2019 when the number of visitors rocketed to nearly 37 million.
After a massive slump, the staycation boom this summer showed that North Wales was still a hugely popular destination for holidaymakers.
Jim Jones said: “Like everybody else, the tourism industry has endured an absolute nightmare over the past 20 months and, because of the nature of the business, our sector was disproportionately affected during the lockdown periods.
“I would like to congratulate the winners and the other finalists tonight because was they have achieved is utterly remarkable, particularly under the most difficult of circumstances.
“I would also like to stress that all the nominees are playing an absolutely vital role in leading the economic recovery here in North Wales and I would like to thank them for their incredible ongoing contribution.”
David Cattrall, the managing director of Harlech Foodservice, said: “We were delighted to have the opportunity to be the headline backer of the awards and to sponsor two individual categories because the tourism and hospitality industry represents our core customer base.
“Although we’ve all had an extremely tough time, there are reasons to be optimistic for the future and the scale of investment going into North Wales shows there is a strong belief that this is a first-class, must-visit destination.”
North Wales Tourism used the occasion to raise money for their nominated charity, St David’s Hospice in Llandudno.
Go Best B&B/Inn of the Year sponsored by Colliers Hotels
- Plas Tan-Yr-Allt Historic Country House – Porthmadog, Gwynedd.
Go Self Catering of the Year sponsored by Pario Leisure Group
- Lyons Pendyffryn Hall, Penmaenmawr, Conwy.
Go Caravan, Camping or Glamping of the Year sponsored by Harlech Food Service
- Graig Wen Arthog, Dolgellau, Gwynedd
Go Holiday Park of the year sponsored by Thornley Leisure Parks
- Marine Holiday Park, Rhyl.
Go Pet Friendly Award sponsored by Pero Foods Ltd
- Y Shed, Meliden, Prestatyn
Go Responsible and Sustainable Green Award sponsored by Adventure Parc Snowdonia
- GreenWood Family Park, Y Felinheli
Go Business Events and Incentive Travel Award sponsored by Heart North Wales
- Venue Cymru, Llandudno
Go Attraction of the Year sponsored by Development Bank of Wales
- Penderyn Distillery, Lloyd St, Llandudno
Go Activity of the Year sponsored by Design 2 Print
- Mynydd Sleddog Adventures, Bwlch Hafod Einion near Llyn Brenig and Alwen Reservoir,
Go Taste of North Wales Award sponsored by Bwydlyn Butchery
- Three Eagles Bar & Grill, Llangollen
Go Resilience and Innovation Award sponsored by North Wales Live
- St David’s Hospice, Llandudno
Go Tourism & Hospitality Hero sponsored by Aber Falls Distillery
- Glenn Evans, from Ruthin – Royal Oak Hotel, Betws y Coed
Outstanding Contribution to Tourism Award sponsored by Grwp Llandrillo Menai
- Michael Bewick – JW Greaves Lts, Managing Director, Llechwedd, Bl Ffestiniog, Gwynedd
Go Hotel of the Year sponsored by Castell Howell Foods Ltd
- Plas Dinas Country House
Go 30 years of the Tourism Industry sponsored by Tir Prince Leisure Group
- Dr Shyam Patiar MBE, Llandrillo College