A Jeddah-based Italian restaurant has won a prestigious award that recognizes its contribution to preserving the food culture of Italy locally and internationally. Il Villaggio beat off competition from 270 restaurants to become one of the four winners of the Grana Padano Italian Cuisine Worldwide Awards, issued by the Virtual Group of Italian Chefs, last month. The restaurant's co-founder Nashwa Taher received the award at a New York ceremony. Speaking to Saudi Gazette on Sunday night at a celebration ceremony in the restaurant, she said: "I couldn't believe it (when I won the award). "It was a mix of emotions and I'll tell you why. "The hospitality (industry) in Saudi Arabia is still very immature, not because the people operating the restaurants do not know how to run it, but because the governmental bodies do not understand the needs of those restaurants, starting from regulations, from staffing, from customs. "There are certain things [authorities] really have to think about before taking certain decisions. "I am very much with change, but in order to change to the positive side, we have to balance everything. "We cannot just go and say that we have to put all Saudis in the restaurants. "This does not come in the blink of an eye." Taher said the restaurant has maintained a commitment to offering only authentic Italian dishes with high-quality ingredients. Winning the award would not have been possible without the hard work of Il Villaggio's team, she said. Taher suggested Saudi women were ready to step out from the shadows and shine. "I also cannot disagree that men's support is very important. "We are not competing with the men, we would like to work with the men. "It is one country and we all come from the same country. "I am sure women have potential here; there are plenty of very well-educated Saudi women from Saudi Arabia or from abroad. "They only need the chance to prove themselves, for themselves." Taher said hospitality would appeal to Saudi men and women who were creative and had a desire to provide top-class services.
Original Post By: http://ift.tt/LINzG6