The George hotel gains Christchurch’s first five-star Qualmark rating

The George, Christchurch has been recognised as one of New Zealand’s exceptional hotels with a five-star rating from Qualmark, New Zealand tourism’s official quality mark.

It is the only hotel in Christchurch, and one of only two in the South Island, to gain five stars through the Qualmark rating system.

Qualmark assessors highlighted The George’s high level of service, and excellent restaurants as key strengths of the 55-room hotel on Park Terrace, opposite Hagley Park in central Christchurch.

“The property exudes a relaxed yet luxurious ambience with staff on hand to meet guests’ every need,” the Qualmark report said.

Christchurch & Canterbury Marketing Chief Executive, Ian Bougen said The George had a long-standing reputation for quality of product and service. “It is excellent to see this has been recognised with the five-star Qualmark rating,” he said.

In 2005 The George began a multi-million dollar redesign programme, with new interiors for its entrance foyer, lobby, and 50 on Park restaurant and bar. Business and conference facilities were also completely redesigned and fitted with state of art technology.

Phase one of a complete structural revamp of guest rooms, encompassing latest international hotel design trends, is now underway. The first floor of rooms will be completed in August, designed by leading Christchurch architects Warren & Mahoney. They incorporate newest world trends in guest room and bathroom layout and interior design, as well as modern in-room technology.

All guest rooms in The George are being equipped with 32” LCD flat screen televisions offering the latest digital movie system. Broadband and wireless internet access is available in all guest rooms and throughout the entire hotel.

General Manager, Bruce Garrett said The George had always been renowned for its high levels of service, with a one-to-one ratio of staff to guests.

“The Qualmark five-star rating is a reflection of The George’s ongoing commitment to superb service and attention to detail, as well as our style, cuisine and parkside city location in Christchurch,” he said.

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The George has received seven significant international awards in recent years. Last year it was voted one of only two best New Zealand hotels in U.S. Travel + Leisure magazine’s top 25 hotels in New Zealand, Australia and the South Pacific survey.

Travel + Leisure named The George one of the 500 Best Hotels in the World for both 2003 and 2004, and one of the world’s top 80 hotels and top 10 in Australia, New Zealand and South Pacific 2004 for service. The magazine’s readers also awarded The George, Best Hotel in New Zealand 2002. In 2002 and 2005 Business Asia magazine readers voted The George Best Business Hotel in Asia (New Zealand section).

Chefs at The George have achieved outstanding success, and the hotel’s extensive wine lists are world-acclaimed. Executive Chef, Nathan Bates is 2005 South Island Chef of the Year and his team of 15 chefs win numerous awards every year at Salon Culinaire competitions.

The hotel’s signature restaurant Pescatore has had a decade-long reputation as one of New Zealand’s finest contemporary dining rooms, with past executive chefs including Rick Rutledge-Manning and Hamish Brown. Pescatore’s chefs also work in the hotel’s innovative all-day dining restaurant 50 on Park, and provide the same level of expertise for function catering, private dining and room service in the hotel.

Qualmark is a joint venture of Tourism New Zealand and New Zealand Automobile Association and is backed by the New Zealand Tourism Industry Association and other leading industry organisations.