The iconic Royal Hotel in Pilgrim’s Rest was a regional finalist in the Coke Food Fest competition in its first year of entering.
“I am very proud of the team. We were honoured to have participated in such a large, country-wide event. We’re thrilled to have gotten as far as we did, considering the small place we’re in, and competing against big city restaurants,” said Lella Smyth, Manager of the Hotel.
The hotel’s restaurant was one of twelve finalists in the gourmet section of the North Region which included Limpopo, Tshwane and Mpumalanga. Judging is based on the number of votes received from guests. This is followed up a visit from “secret guests” who assess the venue in terms of the food quality, service and atmosphere.
Unfortunately, the Royal didn’t make it through to the finals and the TV coverage and big prizes that go with it.
“This year we were still clueless about the competition but It shows that whatever we as Royal Hotel team are putting out there it is good enough to be recognized,” said an enthusiastic Bonga Masengumu, Executive Chef at the Restaurant. “Next year we’re entering, and I promise you now – we’re going to win it. I am very competitive and I’m very proud of my team and of the progress we’ve made so far.”
Lella Smyth and Bonga Masengumu with the certificate they received as regional finalists in the Coke Food Fest competition.