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From a pot scrubber to an award-winning GM, Hopgood has come a long way

From a pot scrubber to an award-winning GM, Hopgood has come a long way
Peter Hopgood, the general manager of Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort (left) with James Wilkinson - the Editor in Chief of HM Magazine and the founder of the HM Awards.
September 06
13:56 2016

 

It was not a surprise that Peter Hopgood, the general manager of Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort, was awarded the Ashley Spencer Service to the Industry Award at the recent HM Awards.

This award acknowledges those individuals, who, throughout their hospitality career have supported the community and the environment.

And who better and more relevant than Mr Hopgood who has for the past seven years been at the helm of the Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort leading this charge.

The HM Awards recognises the accommodation industry’s finest staff, properties, brands and chains across Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific.

Outrigger Enterprises Group President and chief executive, David Carey, said: “As the property’s general manager, Peter is a true ambassador of ‘The Outrigger Way’ and ‘Bula Spirit’.

“He has provided culturally-authentic and engaging experiences for his guests, while also caring deeply for his hosts and the place itself.

“Whether the skies are sunny, or during one of Fiji’s recent cyclones, he is a consummate professional, ensuring that both guests and hosts are safe and supported.”

 

Dedicated community steward

Simply put, Mr Carey described Mr Hopgood as an advocate for the tourism industry and a dedicated community steward.

“His list of accolades and accomplishments read like the CV of a super hero,” Mr Carey said.

Mr Hopgood has helped in restoring eyesight for hundreds of local residents by hosting top eye surgeons from the US.

He has helped save the environment by launching innovative initiatives like ‘No Plastic, That’s Fantastic’.

He has also provided pregnant mothers with a safe place to birth children by orchestrating the construction of a new maternity ward at the local hospital.

“This year, Peter launched a new community tourism project – the construction of a kindergarten at Conua School,” Mr Carey said.

“His passion for helping others knows no bounds and we at Outrigger are sincerely grateful for his leadership. Peter Hopgood is more than good – he is exceptional.”

 

Honoured but humble

On the win, Mr Hopgood said: “To be honest I was very honored and humbled to receive this award as it encompasses all of the hotels and resorts in Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific.

“It is also humbling that an individual from Fiji was the recipient of this award – first time this has occurred!

“As far as my career goes, it just makes me stronger and more willing to do more!

“I am absolutely thrilled to have received this recognition. You enter the hospitality industry because you are passionate about what you do.

“To be acknowledged in this way is just awesome! Coming to Fiji has been the best thing I have ever done.

“It has allowed me to engage with the community in Nadroga/Navosa and in some small way make it a better place. I truly feel blessed that I have been given this opportunity.”

 

Career in hospitality

Mr Hopgood’s motto in life has been: “The harder you work the luckier you get”.

“I have had an outstanding career in hospitality. I first started off as a pot scrubber and then advanced to a public area cleaner,” he said.

“I can honestly state that I have undertaken every job in hospitality. I have managed the biggest resorts in Australia and I have been able to travel all over the world.

“As previously stated my crowning glory occurred when I was invited by Mr. Geoff Shaw to come to Fiji to manager Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort.

“I have the best staff any General Manager could ever wish for – they are like family to me. I would not be the recipient of these awards without my amazing team.

“To be acknowledged as Tourism Leader at the 2015 ANZ Fiji Excellence in Tourism Awards and then to receive the latest recognition for “Service to the Industry” is icing on the cake.

“I would like to thank all of my staff for their hard work and support. Nothing in life comes easy but together we have been able to achieve some amazing results.”

Feedback:  rachnal@fijisun.com.fj

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