The Semi-Final of the 2020 Gold Service Scholarship was held at Rosewood London on Monday, 25 November, where 44 Quarter-Finalists undertook a series of service tests and an interview to determine the eight candidates moving to the Finals of the competition. The Gold Service Scholarship Final will take place on 13 January 2020 at Corinthia London, and the winner – the 2020 Scholar – will be announced at a gala ceremony at The Berkeley on 12 February 2020.
The eight successful Finalists cover the UK from Cornwall to Scotland – they are:
- Rémy Baben, Wild Honey St James, Sofitel London (Assistant Restaurant Manager & Wine Buyer)
- Stephen Kelly, Buckingham Palace (Footman)
- Lauren Friday, Bar Boulud, Mandarin Oriental London (Restaurant Supervisor)
- Clement Gosselin, Jean-Georges at The Connaught (Head Waiter)
- Andreia Monteiro, MacDonald Randolph Hotel, Oxford (Conference & Banqueting Supervisor)
- Elizabeth Forkuoh, Strathearn Restaurant, Gleneagles, Auchterarder, Scotland (FBS Junior Assistant Manager)
- Claudio Bosio, The Waterside Inn, Bray, Berkshire (Assistant Maître d’Hôtel)
- Andrea Nuninger, The Scarlet Hotel, Newquay, Cornwall (Restaurant Host)
Edward Griffiths, Trustee and Chairman of the Judges, remarked on the impressive standard of applicants for the 2020 competition, stating: “It has definitely been a vintage year. We’ve seen the service skills, enthusiasm and general professionalism continue to grow each year, and that makes the task of whittling the list down to just eight Finalists very difficult.”
Trustee Silvano Giraldin MdL reinforced the praise for the 2020 candidates, commenting: “There was an exceptionally high level of scoring during the Quarter-Finals and Semi-Finals, and that made it tough for us to select just one person to be the new Scholar. They are all already winners in our minds!”
The Scholarship was launched in 2012 to encourage a lasting heritage of excellence in hospitality, and its Patron is Her Majesty The Queen. The Trustees include some of the UK’s most highly regarded professionals, including Willy Bauer OBE (Founder), Alastair Storey OBE (Chairman), Edward Griffiths (Chairman of the Judges), Sergio Rebecchi, Silvano Giraldin, Thomas Kochs, Sara Jayne Stanes OBE and John Davey.
The programme celebrates the craft of front-of-house service in food and beverage, and nurtures young talent through tailored mentoring. The past seven years’ Scholars and Finalists have had impressive progression in their careers to date, due in part to the networks that they have established during their association with the Scholarship. As Alumni, they are also members of Team Gold, a newsletter and social sharing platform for all Scholars and Finalists.