Original Richmond Business and Tourism Association members, Dennis and Marcia McLuckie, are celebrating following receipt of a prestigious ROSE Award from VisitEngland for their small Richmond Holiday Cottage business, Garden Cottage.
Each year there are only 100 recipients of a ROSE award, which recognises the accommodation providers across England who provide visitors with the warmest of welcomes. They celebrate the establishments where the owners, management and employees, irrespective of their star rating, style or type of accommodation, provide outstanding experiences for their customers.
Dennis and Marcia were presented with their award by Dame Judith Macgregor DCMG LVO of Visit Britain at a ceremony and afternoon tea at Luton Hoo Hotel in Bedfordshire.
The ROSE Award winners were nominated by VisitEngland’s quality scheme assessors and selected from assessor comments and online feedback from overseas and domestic visitors. The final judging panel also looks for innovation that sets the business apart. This includes facilities or services offered to make the customer’s stay really special.
VisitEngland Director Andrew Stokes said: “It is great to see the ROSE Awards back as we celebrate and congratulate accommodation businesses across England excelling at customer service and creating stand-out experiences that keep visitors coming back time-after-time”.
"The awards are also a wonderful showcase of the sheer scale of outstanding accommodation across England with visitors truly spoilt for choice. From stunning estates with camping on their doorstep to quintessentially English pubs with cosy rooms, from charming B&Bs and self-catering cottages in glorious locations to quirky beach huts in picture-perfect seaside towns, there is a stay to suit all tastes and requirements.”
Dennis and Marcia purchased and renovated Garden Cottage in 2007 and continue to keep the cottage well maintained and individually decorated to a high standard. The holiday home has been awarded a 4-star gold rating each year since it opened for business. Guests enjoy a comfortable stay in this well-equipped holiday home, which has a private garden with fantastic views.
The cottage stands within the walls of the Georgian kitchen garden built for Mr. John Yorke, which Dennis and Marcia have reclaimed and redesigned over the years. Guests are invited to explore the one-acre garden, which was given a Gold Award by Yorkshire in Bloom.
Marcia McLuckie said, “ I was very surprised and very pleased to learn we were to receive the ROSE award. We are just a small business and don’t expect this sort of recognition. We have many repeat visits from guests who are very complimentary about the cottage and the service they receive. The majority of our bookings are handled personally and people really appreciate that service, attention to detail and the amount of information we can give about our lovely area that helps to make their stay in Richmond even more special”.
Tourism is one of England’s largest and most valuable industries, supporting hundreds of thousands of businesses, employing about 2.6 million people and, in 2019, generating £76 billion in domestic visitor spending.