Hermanus, Western Cape
Cradled amid the hills of the Hemel-en-Aarde (Heaven and Earth) valley,
Bouchard Finlayson is widely acclaimed as one of South Africa’s leading boutique wine cellars.
With a terroir defined by both ancient soils and a cool maritime climate, the vineyards of Bouchard Finlayson are famous for producing award-winning
Pinot Noir, elegant Chardonnay and terroir-driven Sauvignon Blanc, while inspired blends showcase the depth of skill and innovation in our winemaking team.
The Bouchard Finlayson cellar is conveniently located a scenic 90 minutes’ drive from Cape Town, close to the world-famous whale-watching centre of Hermanus.
I am responsible for the day to day running of our iconic 83 bedroom castle. Continually ensuring we meet international standards of excellence, I have a constant guest focus and am always seeking to find new and innovative ways to excel. I am proud to have been awarded 'Hospitality Manager of the Year' by The Irish Times. Together with my dedicated and passionate team we provide genuine and generous Irish hospitality on a grand scale.
It is an absolute privilege to be Director of Sales and Marketing at the legendary Ashford Castle, for over 25 years. I am proud to represent the wonderful Ashford family. My role is to connect our guests, clients and travel advisors with the operational team, in a smooth and efficient manner to ensure that each guest has a truly memorable experience. Our team are warm, compassionate, caring, genuine and enthusiastic about delivering and living the Red Carnation ethos.
With over 25 years of fine dining experience in some of the most prestigious hotels and restaurants in Ireland and in Europe I have a 'French heart' in love with the abundance of Irish produce. I plan to introduce Ashford Castle’s own 'Potager' kitchen garden in the grounds of the property over the coming months. This will supply the castle’s kitchens with the freshest herbs, fruit and vegetables grown in the Connemara soil.
The food and beverage offering at Ashford Castle encompasses a number of unique experiences and I am very excited to join the team with a pivotal role in one of the world’s top luxury hotels. In the hospitality industry, we all strive for excellence when it comes to providing the best for our guests, so I am delighted to be working with a team who are constantly recognised for exceeding guest expectations.
The Castle, our guests and the team here make Ashford a very special place to work and I truly enjoy every day - ensuring guests’ comfort and needs are anticipated and nothing is left in doubt requires a keen attention to detail, and the warmth and friendliness of our guests make my job an absolute pleasure.
I have worked at Ashford Castle since 1987 - starting as a Chef de Rang before quickly moving through the ranks as Room Service Manager, Sommelier and now as Restaurant Manager of the George V Dining Room and Wine Program Manager. Ashford Castle has been an icon for Irish hospitality with a wonderful food and wine experience for nearly 75 years and I am proud to be a part of it.
My love affair with Ashford Castle began in 2000 and I am now proud to be the Manager of the Prince of Wales Cocktail Bar and The Drawing Room, providing a welcoming space for guests to relax and enjoy their favourite tipple, a light bite or a pint of Guinness! Originally from The Philippines, it was not difficult for me to find Ashford as my 'home away from home' because at its core it fosters good family values, ethics and the importance of working as a team.
I am excited to have joined the fabulous team at Ashford Castle, a property steeped in history and carefully restored to its former glory. It is a hotel admired by many in the industry as well as its returning guests. I look forward to being one of the custodians that have the pleasure to provide guests with lasting memories.
I was always cooking at home from a very early age. I try to create a great story behind every creation - I love stories and use them to connect with people. I’m very lucky to be surrounded by incredible people here at Ashford, who are all are very inspiring and they ensure I have the resources required to create with passion. When our wonderful owner, Mrs Tollman visits, we sometimes create desserts together. These moments are very special to me.