The WOWs (Wonders of Westside) awards salute the great work of individuals, teams and the Business Improvement District in making the district safe, welcoming and party central. Jas Sansi was there and he has the pictures to prove it.
The WOWs has firmly established itself on Birmingham’s social calendar since its inception as the BOBs (Best of Broad Street) many moons ago. Those who work in the hospitality, food and drinks industry are at their busiest over Christmas and New Years, at a time when most people are on a break.
The WOWs is more than an awards ceremony, its an opportunity for the businesses in the BID to raise their glasses in an annual celebration of what they bring to the city, region and economy. And for that, we are immensely grateful.
Westside BID incorporates the stretch of real estate along Broad Street, Brindleyplace and the Canals. The Wonders of Westside (WOWs) celebrated the best of Brum’s night time economy and beyond.
What a night; glamorous dresses, slick dinner suits, the world’s largest spirit producer as sponsor, internationally renowned DJ and pea shooters. Yes, the 2018 WOWs kicking off a fabulous year of awards in Birmingham did not disappoint.
The great and the good were there. I bumped into Anita Champaneri, the PR Supremo from Delicious PR and Gov Singh from sponsor ODC drinks.
The Governor of Westside, Mike Olley welcomed everyone to the evening announcing LoveBrum as the chosen charity of the night.
I then dashed on to stage, unhooked my camera harness, camera and battery pack, basically a Nikon Strip tease and took a couple of minutes explaining LoveBrum.
LoveBrum is the charity for a better Birmingham, casting a spotlight on projects across all communities in the city region, and asking members, who pay £20 a year to join, to vote for the causes they want their money to go.
The awards began with acknowledging those who work in the BID (Business Improvement District) including the City Pastors who are on hand to ensure those visiting the area have assistance if necessary.
The City Pastors introduce an element of calm in situations where previously uniformed officers would be the only port of call. The City Pastors demonstrated the power of faith later that evening winning two of the raffle prizes.
Here’s a listing of all the winners at WOWs18. Congratulations to those who are waking up today with a trophy on their bedside tables. Well done to the organisers who smashed another event out of the stadium and on a night when New York hosted the Grammys, and Piers Morgan interviewed Trump, the WOWs trended nationally in 6th place. Great job team.
Debbie Gooding – Outstanding Achievement Award
WOWs18 salute the Westside BID Wardens
Sergeant David Gregory and Zoe Bishop – Pride In Work Award
Sean Wright – Pride in Work Award
Amy Langham – Best Arts/Entertainment Manager Award
SACO Apartments won Best Hotel/Serviced Apartments
Hampton By Hilton were awarded Best Front Of House
Cafe Rouge in Brindleyplace picked up the first of two awards winning best Bistro/Cafe
Rosanna Meyer won Promotions Team Leader
Vinod Pandey & Rajendra Kandel from Varanasi shared the award for Best Chef – Fine Dining
Best Pub at WOWs 2018 was The Brasshouse
Best Pub Manager was awarded to Pip White from O’Neills who as co-host should also have won a prize for best wind up of the night telling guests there was an envelope with £1000 taped to the bottom of a chair in the hall. 400 people stand up and invert their chairs to check. ‘Just kidding’ quips Pip. Hilarious.
Jurys Inn win Best Hotel Team
Djazi Riouzi was awarded Best Chef, Casual at Del Villagio. Del Villagio were one of the star twitter users on the night. Give them a follow on @del_villaggio
New to Westside and winning Best Restaurant (casual) was The Canal House
Hyatt Regency General Manager is applauded by his team collecting the award for Best Hotel/Serviced Apartments, the first of three awards for the hotel which sees the return of their Sales & Marketing Director Joanne Brain this week.
Here’s one with Mario who invited his team on stage to collect the award
Thamir Abdul, Café Rouge, Best Manager – Bistro/Café
Relentless – Best Promotions Team
Jade Wilkes, Aria at Hyatt Regency for winning Best Manager – Restaurant
Cineworld Broad Street Best Arts/Entertainment venue
Paul Millington – Contribution to Westside and Birmingham
Gin Vault win Best Bar at WOWs18
Jas Binning for winning Best Bar Manager, Mooch Bar
Lewis Verne, Players Best Manager (Club) papped by his team
And one of Lewis and the team from Players
PRYZM win Best Club
Best Bar Team, O Bar
Sunny and Gov from ODC Drinks present the next set of awards
Popworld, Best Team – Club
The ever popular Pushkar win Best Restaurant in the Fine Dining category
Velvet Music Rooms & Sugar Suite, Best Door Team
Best Newcomer Felsons
Salman Rashid, Hyatt Regency for winning Outstanding Achievement makes it a hat trick for the Broad Street hotel
Robert Lee, Lee Longlands wins The Outstanding Achievement Award
Jo at Reflex wins Best New Manager Award
Barajees win Best Value at WOWs18
Zara’s Best Interior Character
Rosie’s win Best Transformation
That’s it for another year at the WOWs. Thank you to all sponsors without who, events like this just wouldn’t be possible.
A huge thank you on behalf of the Trustees, Ambassadors and LoveBrum community for supporting the charity for a better Birmingham on the night. £888 was raised and will go towards helping projects across the city region making a real difference to Brum.
Full set of images can be seen at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/jassansi/sets/72157668980141629
Jas Sansi is a freelance photographer based in Birmingham, a Trustee of LoveBrum and columnist for The Asian Today newspaper.
@jassansi 07930 837 505