Backpackers pick up award

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It has taken just nine months for Empire Hotel Backpackers manager Mandy Gillard to successfully turn the place around.

Mrs Gillard and her husband Mike took over the running of the backpackers in August last year and the couple have now received an award for the establishment.

Trip Advisor – a website where people can write reviews on any place they have stayed, eaten or visited – honoured the backpackers with a certificate of excellence.

Mrs Gillard said it was pleasing to have been recognised with the award.

“I am humbled by it. It’s nice to know all the long hours I have put in are starting to pay off.

“I have achieved what I wanted to achieve when I took over nine months ago and that is to make it a homely place for guests to enjoy while they are here.”

Mrs Gillard said while it was nice to be recognised for her hard work, she couldn’t claim all the glory herself.

“I want to thank Donna at The Criterion, Heather from the Last Post, John at Steampunk, Smash Palace, The iSite, Penguin Colony, the Guardians and the police because they are all very helpful with referring tourists to our place as a nice place to stay.”

The award is the first of its kind for Mrs Gillard since she took over Empire Hotel Backpackers and she said she hoped to receive a few more in the future.

“I want to thank the Gibson family for employing me to manage the Hotel Backpackers and Mike, my husband, for his help.”

By BRAYDEN LINDSAY