Nominations for the 2016 Rotorua Hospitality Awards are now open with organisers announcing a "new twist" to the nomination process and more catagories to enter.

The fifth annual awards, which will be held on July 17 at the Energy Events Centre, celebrates and recognises everything and everyone that is hospitality - from front of house teams and kitchen crews through to baristas and bar stars.

The Rotorua Hospitality Awards salute hospitality excellence and all the great things this industry has to offer, from restaurants and bars, to top industry personalities, Sharon Wallace, Rotorua branch president of the Restaurant Association of New Zealand said.

"The glittering awards night is a big night out where everyone has a chance to let their hair down and raise a glass to hospitality in New Zealand's very own 'Vegas', and we could all be saluting you," she said.

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"With the evolution and success of the wards, adding a twist to the nomination process is both inevitable and good news for industry. "Establishments now have the opportunity to nominate within their own team, as well as be given the opportunity to place a nomination towards their own establishment."

The three new catagories this year are front of house star, emerging business, for any business that has opened in the last two years, and outstanding ethnic restaurant.

"Being chosen as outstanding, as well as being the best in the industry, is something worth raving about," Ms Wallace said.

"No awards ceremony can take place without the support of key sponsors and the Rotorua Hospitality Awards are very lucky to have had the on-going support of many sponsors over many years.

"The committee encourages all in industry to go online and start the nomination process. With the new user friendly website and guidelines surrounding the new opportunities the awards have to offer, nominating your team members couldn't be easier."

2016 Rotorua Hospitality Awards Categories:
- Jasco Distributing Outstanding Bar
- Restaurant Association of NZ Outstanding Barista
- Restaurant Association of NZ Outstanding Bartender
- Bidvest Outstanding Cafe
- Skyline Rotorua Outstanding Caterer
- Menumate Outstanding Chef
- Restaurant Association of NZ Emerging Business
- Service IQ Emerging Chef
- The Hits 97.5 Outstanding Takeout
- Inghams Outstanding Hotel Restaurant
- OneMusic Outstanding Restaurant
- Restaurant Association of NZ Outstanding Sales Representative
- Rotorua Daily Post Outstanding Ethnic Restaurant
- Tohu Wines Front of House Star
- Rotorua Lakes Council People's Choice Award
- Spark Business Icon of Rotorua Hospitality

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* To make a nomination, buy tickets for the awards night, and all other details, visit www.rotoruaawards.co.nz.