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Sandals in Jamaica grooming flair bartenders to Challenge team from USA

Source: Jamaica Observer

SANDALS/Beaches Resorts is trying to make the best even better. It takes a lot of skill and lots of practice to become a really good flair bartender. Given time, the bartenders in the Sandals and Beaches chain of resorts will become the world's best at it, just as how the resort chain is the best all-inclusive in the world.

Two weeks ago, 31 bartenders from 12 properties across Jamaica completed a one-week training course with two of the world's finest trainers, Dave Simpson and Tyler Tronnes from www.extremebartending.com in Canada, and became certified flair bartenders.

Dave Simpson, an instructor for www.extremebartending.com  demonstrates his 'bottle-tossing' skills at the Flair Bartending Award Ceremony held at Sandals Grande.

Cerone Williams of Sandals Royal Caribbean was named star bartender performer of the training sessions and received special mention and additional prizes.

Omight Blair and Linval Crooks of Sandals Whitehouse - who were good enough to be named best tandem bartenders from among those who participated and were quite impressive, enough so to suggest a really bright future for Sandals' flair bartenders - combined to give a demonstration of what was learnt at the week-long training and what was to come from the Sandals team. They performed a second drink routine that went very well.

If anything, their demonstration also indicated how they would match up against a team from the USA, which food and beverage director Armando Pizzuti made mention of.

According to Pizzuti, the 10 or 15 best flair bartenders in the USA would compete against Sandals at a date to be determined.
He congratulated Sandals Resorts for the training offered to the bartenders, whom he challenged to make use of the opportunity and to share their experience with others.

"Share this experience with your team members when you go back. This training is yours, nobody can take it away from you," Pizzuti said.
General manager Michael Darby praised the training programme, saying such programmes helped to keep the resort chain "at the forefront of the industry".

He said it was good to see the level of participation and the kind of excitement that was brought to the bar because of the flair experience. He said everyone in the course did exceptionally well.

Simpson and Tronnes later entertained the audience with a spectacular show of their own, showing why they are regarded as tops in their field.
It was the second consecutive year that the training course was being held.

Date: June 12th, 2006

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Scott Young, President and Head Instructor Bar Smart Inc.