The Ritz-Carlton’s Erika Chadwick is the Cayman Islands Tourism Association’s Restaurant Manager of the Year 2012.
It was something of a surprise, albeit a very pleasant one, for the British lass, who had only joined The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman some 10 months previously.
“I was very proud to be nominated for the award,” she said. “It was always a dream to work for The Ritz-Carlton and to gain this prestigious award felt great.
“There are opportunities to make a difference and I hope I have made my mark,” she added. “I worked in the United States and London, but this property really pulled me in. It has so many unique things about it and there really is a variety of things to do as food and beverage manager. This is the place you really want to be.”
One of Ms Chadwick’s responsibilities is a deep involvement with the Cayman Cookout, an event she said she rated highly.
“It is an incredible experience,” she said. “These huge events on the beach are immense.”
Aside from her job at the resort, she said she had been enjoying the beach and the ocean.
“There’s the stingrays, horseriding on the beach, the bioluminescence and the kayak tour, which is awesome and of course the island restaurants.
“I lived on a small island in Florida linked to the mainland and find Cayman is very safe with lots to do. I loved living in London, but Cayman is a different world.” Her job has taken her across the world over the years and Ms Chadwick concluded that for the youngster interested in a hospitality career, there were a few key elements needed.
“If you have the right attitude and passion you can learn new skills, travel the world and build qualities that can take you through life.
“You do not have to be academic,” she said. “I had a mentor at age 15 who started as a bellboy and went on to be a top general manager in Europe. With passion, focus and drive it shows anything is possible.”