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The Hotelier Middle East Awards 2021

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The award took place on Wednesday, September 29. The ceremony was held at JW Marriott Marquis Dubai in Business Bay.

There were 19 categories in this year’s event and one of them was the Unsung Hero. With an increased number of nominations and a higher standard of entry, showing how much the industry has rebounded since the pandemic, it was a tough competition for each category. Each hotel’s Service program depends on dedicated colleagues of different ages and backgrounds stepping up to make a difference in their hotel and communities. Unsung Heroes aims to bring to light the everyday acts of kindness that have characterized this lockdown, from saving lives to helping others
while communities recover.

The InterContinental Regency and Crowne Plaza Bahrain, both IHG hotels, are truly proud to have won the Unsung Hero of the year in Hotelier ME awards 2021.

UNSUNG HERO OF THE YEAR – Cecilia Tabuzo, InterContinental Regency Bahrain

“Without her daily follow-up calls I might not be here today,” said a colleague at InterContinental Regency Bahrain when speaking about hotel nurse Cecilia Tabuzo. “She is my saviour,” added the colleague. The co-worker in question had contracted Covid-19 and found herself with breathing issues, too weak to call anyone for help. Thankfully, Tabuzo had been visiting the colleague on a daily basis, and when things were at their worst, she promptly contacted paramedics.

As a Hotel Nurse, Cecelia was the front liner in the face of pandemic, selflessly faced the challenges at work in spite of the difficulties and danger beyond the call of duty. She is the first one who ran towards the line of danger. She has dealt with mental calculus and against human nature, chosen selflessness over self-preservation – not just today in the war against the invisible enemy that is COVID-19, but every time she stepped into her scrubs.

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Tabuzo also bravely supported her team after the executive secretary to the GM passed away. Tabuzo organized a memorial service, and rolled out a series of programmes on how to de-stress at work, all the while assisting the hotel.

She also organized a group of colleagues to be certified first aiders to cover shifts in the hotel.

HIGHLY COMMENDED UNSUNG HERO OF THE YEAR – Shaji Chellepan, Crowne Plaza Bahrain

Tireless, selfless, passionate, caring, servant leadership, trustworthiness, are just some of many characteristics the team at Crowne Plaza Bahrain uses to describe Shaji Chellappan. As the Assistant Facilities Manager, nothing was too difficult or too much for Shaji to handle. On top of expertly maintaining the housing facility, the welfare of the colleagues was his priority. This one-man, wellrounded professional wore many hats – the technician, the housing attendant, the “nurse”, the driver and the building watchman of the colleagues’ accommodation.

His selflessness in putting the safety of his colleagues, surfaced when he volunteered himself to ferry the infected colleagues to the Health Centres when the Ministry of Health could no longer mobilize the drivers to support the infected citizens. Shaji arranged to isolate the affected colleagues in the accommodation without sending them to the quarantine facility, whilst keeping the rest of the colleagues safe. He acted as their nurse by checking on their situation and providing all their needs. He took on himself to deliver food parcels to the colleagues in the accommodation especially for those who are on leave or day-off to limit their movement as the cafeteria is located in the hotel. This was an added task to which he roped in his family staying with him to help.

Our super heroes without the cape – The Unsung Heroes need no capes.

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