No sheet was left untucked and no carrot left unpeeled this weekend as around 1000 hospitality experts met for the annual New Zealand Hospitality Championships.

The four-day long event kicked off on Saturday at the Logan Campbell Centre in Greenlane and is the largest of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere.

Competitors came from all around the country and performed in front of 400 judges, including celebrity chef Anton Mosimann OBE.

If you've ever wondered why crawling into bed at a hotel feels so good, the answer was on display at the championship's live bed-making competition.


Twenty competitors were judged on how fast they could make the bed as well as their accuracy and skill. The mattress protector, sheets and duvet all had to be evenly fitted and tucked tightly while other points were awarded for the way the corners, duvet and pillowcases were set.

The presentation, manners and efficiency of the competitor also contributed to the overall score. The winner will be announced tomorrow.

In the Kiwi Kids Can Cook section, competitors in the junior and senior championship divisions were judged on their vegetable-inspired dish.

Jordin Wilson took out the Junior Championship with a roasted Jerusalem artichoke, yam and almond soup with pan-fried prawn and herb oil.

Brooke Rogers snared the Senior Championship, creating a spiced rhubarb, coconut yoghurt and hazelnut praline.

Competitors in action during The Kids Can Cook competition. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Competitors in action during The Kids Can Cook competition. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Mosimann judged both cooking showdowns and was pleased with the talent and food knowledge of the finalists, particularly the juniors.

"It was a fantastic competition. I am so impressed with the quality and innovation the children showed in such a short time.

"My congratulations to all the children who competed today. These are the New Zealand chefs of our future," he said.


Competitors had 30 minutes to create a dish using at least one New Zealand-grown vegetable with two gas burners and a microwave.

Other divisions incorporate cookery, restaurant service and other gastronomy and hospitality industry classes such as barista, cocktail and bed making.

More than 80 different classes are also being run throughout the event, including primary school, secondary school, tertiary and open classes for professionals.

The event was created and held to showcase New Zealand's best hospitality professionals and is open to competitors of a range of skills and age.