Delighted staff at Surgeons’ Hall were crowned Edinburgh’s Best Performing Business at the City’s prestigious annual Chamber of Commerce awards.
The accolade for the Commercial Enterprises team recognises their innovative work to make best possible use of the impressive buildings owned by the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.
That in turn helps fund and safeguard the College’s globally important work providing education and assessment for medical students, surgical trainees and consultants who take their life-saving and life-changing skills all over the world.
In 2015 the team achieved a series of major milestones, including the Royal launch of the stunning new Prince Philip building, the opening of the new Café 1505 venue, a highly successful run as a Fringe venue and the delivery of its biggest ever conference, for 550 delegates.
The judges said they were looking for businesses with a defined strategy for growth, a dynamic team which was always innovating and which achieved strong results – and praised Surgeons’ Hall for “significant income growth to support their global education programme”.
Scott Mitchell, Commercial Director at Surgeon’s Hall, said: “The team put in an incredible amount of work in 2015 so I couldn’t be more delighted to see them recognised in this way. So many things came together over the year and that didn’t happen by chance. It was down to hard work, commitment and a fantastic team spirt.
“What’s even more impressive is that the enthusiasm and ambition has carried over into 2016. Winning this accolade reminds us that other people are taking notice of what we are doing here, which is very rewarding.”
The College’s Commercial Enterprises promotes, sells and manages all commercial activities held within the College Campus, which include the four-star, 77-bedroom hotel, Ten Hill Place.
During the period covered by the award a series of enhancements were delivered at the hotel. Those included refurbishment of the bedrooms, introduction of new menus which earned an AA Rosette and the launch of a new, customer-focused website.
Another highlight was the successful opening of the Prince Philip Building in the former Edinburgh University Language School. It underwent a multi-million pound transformation and enjoyed immediate success, positioning it as a major new venue in Edinburgh.
The team also oversaw and delivered the transformation of a neighbouring building into Café 1505, offering freshly made, healthy and Fairtrade food and drink to customers, including many visitors to the newly refurbished Surgeons’ Hall Museums.
Mr Mitchell added: “Everyone is buzzing in the team and enjoying the sense of achievement but we won’t be resting on our laurels. We have a number of new developments coming this year, not least that we’ll be welcoming even more Fringe visitors in August than in any previous year.
“Crucially, we never lose sight of our most important customers – the day-to-day hotel guests, conference delegates and event attendees who turn out for everything from weddings to office parties and want to know they will have a fantastic experience.”
All profits made by Commercial Enterprises support the charitable aims of the College which are education, assessment and advancement in surgery.
The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh is one of the world’s oldest medical institutions founded in 1505 after receiving a Royal Seal of Cause from King James IV.
It is renowned for its Playfair Building, dating back to 1832, including the magnificent, Playfair Hall, where the events are held. The College is also home to the famous Surgeons’ Hall Museum, which houses collections of international importance.
Surgeons’ Hall was named the Best Performing Business with 11-50 staff at the Fifth Annual Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce Business Awards held on February 29 at the City’s Sheraton Grand Hotel. Other finalists included the Royal Highland Agricultural Society of Scotland, Old Town Chambers and Be-IT Resourcing.