Pamela Ruddy from The Courtyard Apartments, Patricia Corrigan, Padanee Bridal Couture and Consultancy, and Imelda Scally, The Landmark Hotel pictured with their awards.
It has been a very special week for Carrick-on-Shannon as three local businesses took three national awards presented by WeddingsOnline.
They were :
WeddingsOnline Award for Venue Co-Ordinator of the Year – Imelda Scally – The Landmark Hotel, Carrick-on-Shannon.
WeddingsOnline National Award for Bridalwear Supplier of the Year – Padanee Bridal Couture and Consultancy, Carrick-on-Shannon.
WeddingsOnline National Award for Hen and Stag Supplier of the Year - The Courtyard Apartments, Carrick-on-Shannon.
Pamela Ruddy, who has been with The Courtyard Apartments for 5 years as sales administrator, told the paper this is their first time to be nominated and “we can't believe we won it!”
“As Carrick-on-Shannon is one of the main destinations for hen and stag parties , it is fantastic for the winner to come from a provider which is situated in the town. Dealing with over 200 people every weekend, we provide a service like no other and make sure that they have the best weekend of their lives.”
Asked how will the win affect the business she said “I think it will give great reassurance to people booking with us that we provide an excellent service and highlight The Courtyard Apartments and Carrick-on -Shannon as a destination which has so much to offer not only Hen and Stag parties markets but for corporate groups and team building events.”
Talking about why she believes they won the award she said “Unlike other third party hen and stag providers, we are onsite and provide a face to face customer presence. We are not a provider who can close up shop and switch off their computers on a Friday.
“We provide onsite, contactable service day and night and are on hand to help in anyway. Being the best hen and stag provider means being there from the beginning, providing a service and making sure they have the best weekend of their lives.
“On the initial phone contact, we say our welcoming line: “This is the Courtyard Apartments how can I help you?” We start a relationship and fulfil a weekend of memories for the bride and groom to treasure.
“This is a service like no other and our ultimate goal is that they come back to us again and again.
“As we say at the Courtyard Apartments “Book here and we will do the rest!“
Looking towards the future she added “We are always looking to improve by providing more options for activities as Carrick-on-Shannon has an abundance of these to offer. We are striving to keep the hen and stag party groups returning to Carrick-on-Shannon as this keeps the town buzzing at the weekend and gives a lot of employment to the locals. We will continue to push our midweek business attracting more corporate groups and more families as in The Courtyard Apartments we are always looking to evolve.”
Imelda Scally who took the award for Venue Co-Ordinator of the Year has been at the Landmark Hotel for the last two years and “is loving every minute!”
“This is my first time to win Ireland's Venue Coordinator of the Year, we were also finalists this year in Best Wedding Venue in Connaught and Waterside Venue of the Year! We won Ireland's Best Waterside Venue of the Year last year too, it is a great achievement to win two prestigious awards two years in row! Everyone is delighted here at The Landmark Hotel!
“Winning the award means the absolute world, I was so shocked when my name was called out as Venue Coordinator of the Year; the competition was fierce with some amazing coordinators from amazing hotels around Ireland! I am honoured to have this title and to represent The Landmark Hotel at such a high level!
The Leitrim Observer asked Imelda what this will mean for the business. “From the response we got last year our business levels will soar, the Weddingsonline awards are the most prestigious wedding awards out there so to be a winner again for the second year in a row we are thrilled! Also, the fact that the other two ladies Patricia and Pamela brought home awards I think it really puts Carrick-on-Shannon on the map as an outstanding area for wedding services,” she said.
The wedding industry is a tough business so what does she thinks made them stand out in the competition?
“The wedding industry is forever changing, trends change on a yearly basis and I feel we are always on the top of our game here at The Landmark delivering not only the best food but also the best service. This was always my aim to provide the best service to all my brides and grooms, I want to make them feel very special, that they are in safe hands and not to stress about anything!
“I take on a lot of little jobs for my brides and grooms and I am only happy to help them with every aspect of their wedding! I do feel my personality and standards of service pitted me at the top of such an amazing category!”
So what's next for Imelda and The Landmark?
“We have just completed a huge refurbishment of our ballroom, reception room, lobby, aromas café and bedrooms which is great for us as it looks like a completely new venue! We have a new website on the way in the coming months so I feel like it is going to be an exciting, busy year for us! We thank all our past, present and future brides and groom who continue to support us and let The Landmark Hotel be a part of their very special wedding day!”
Patricia Corrigan is the owner of Padanee Bridal Couture and Consultancy, which has been in operation for the last three years.
Patricia told the paper “I have been nominated in these Awards many times both as a Wedding Coordinator and this was the first time Padanee had entered for Best Bridal Retailer.
“So far to date I now am very proud to say I hold 3 titles of Wedding Coordinator of the Year Ireland, Padanee holds one title of Best Newcomer in its first year in Business, in its second year it Won Best Bridal with TV3’s Xpose and Fafinder and now in our 3rd year we have Best Bridal in Ireland 2018. We are absolutely so proud and excited.
Asked what winning the award means to her she replied “It means that all the hard work that you put in to get to this stage of your business is being acknowledged by the people that matter the most your brides. If they do not vote for you in the beginning there is no chance of getting to the next stage. Finally you are assessed by judges in the wedding industry, these guys are at the top of their game and it is incredible to believe that when they look at you they think you are the best.
“This is amazing for my brides to be able to say that they have chosen their gown in an award winning shop but for me it's always most important to be thinking about my bride that is getting married this week and not to be thinking about the awards. That is the most important thing for me, to make sure my brides are always happy.”
Asked why she thought she won she said, “The answer to that question is very simple, I don’t know, in all the years I have won awards I am always blown away that I could be up against such serious competition and actually win. To win awards for doing something I love with all my heart is the most amazing feeling. I don’t feel I do anything better than anyone else, I just work really hard to ensure that my gorgeous brides are happy and have a nice experience when choosing their wedding gown. So I never see myself as outshining the competition. I just look at what I do and try to do my very best always; give one hundred per cent and push myself to the best I can be. I never focus on what anyone else is doing. If you are watching what other people are doing you are not focusing on yourself.”
And what's next for Patricia and Padanee? “I take every day as it comes, I don’t ever have plans all laid out. I just want to look after each of my brides to the very best of my ability and ensure they are happy and are wearing beautiful gowns.
“We are developing a second phase to the business at the moment and I am also involved with setting up the first ever Irish Wedding Industry Federation in which the wedding suppliers of Ireland are recognised on a national level as one entity,” she concluded.