Nine businesses were singled out as winners by the Nelson & District Chamber of Commerce

The Business Excellence Awards went to large and small businesses in Nelson

Ryan and Lea Martin, owners of Marzano, stand in front  of a wall with pizza paddles on the wall.

Marzano, owned by Ryan and Lea Martin, won the Hospitality/Food & Beverage Excellence Award. — Photo courtesy Ryan Martin

The Nelson & District Chamber of Commerce handed out nine awards at its annual Business Excellence Awards this spring.

Leave it to our most unique city in the Kootenays to give out a unique award: Inclusive Employer. Is the Nelson & District Chamber the only chamber in the Kootenays to give such a business award?

Congratulations to the following winners:

Business of the Year: Ainsworth Hot Springs Resort

The hot springs at Ainsworth are magical, especially wading or swimming through the twisty cave. The restorative mineral waters of the natural hot springs heal your mind, body and spirit.

Speaking of magic, one of my best friends met her future husband at the hot springs several years ago!

Tourism Excellence: Whitewater Ski Resort

The Whitewater Ski Resort is known for its snow, its food and its vibe. The dry, light powder is measured in metres not feet. Who doesn’t drool over the photos in the famous Whitewater Cooks cookbooks? And the vibe, well, it’s Nelson, full of mountain lovers who live for outdoor recreation in all seasons.

Manufacturing/Technology/Innovation Excellence: Voytech Computers

Started in 2001, Voytech Computers is a full-service computer company, offering web design, server upkeep, system repairs, virus removals, business networking, system consultations and mobile support. Staff can provide support for any type of computing device, from mobile phones to tablets and desktops.

Non-Profit/Community Service Excellence: The Civic Theatre

Executive director of the Nelson Civic Theatre Society, Eleanor Stacey is ecstatic with the planned renovations including the addition of two more theatres to The Civic Theatre. She continually strives to find new ways to collaborate with businesses and other organizations.

Retail Excellence: Cartolina

The Cartolina store is full of vintage-inspired paper goods, gifts, personal accessories and home accents. Centre court is held by Cartolina’s own line of stationery, designed in Nelson and sold worldwide, including in the Smithsonian and The British Museum.

Hospitality/Food & Beverage Excellence: Marzano

Marzano is the most legit Neapolitan-style pizzeria this side of the Atlantic. Located inside Nelson’s Best Western Baker Street Inn, the restaurant is named after the famous Italian San Marzano tomatoes, which only grow in the volcanic soil near Mount Vesuvius outside Napoli, Italy.

Professional Service Excellence: Edge Roofing Ltd.

Established in 2006, Edge Roofing Ltd. has completed many projects ranging from garden sheds and custom homes to historic commercial buildings. The roofing company worked on the Nelson Regional Visitor Gateway Project.

Rising Star/Start Up/New Business/Entrepreneur Excellence: Backroads Brewing Company

You can’t get more local beer than that produced by the Backroads Brewing Company. The beer is made in-house in the centre of Nelson and flows 100 feet to the taps in the taproom. Mike Kelly, a winning brewmaster, excels at small-batch, handcrafted ales and lagers.

The Backroads Brewing Company is on the BC Ale Trail. Ready for a road trip?

Inclusive Employer: Wait’s News

What’s new at Wait’s News? It moved from its famous location on the corner of Ward and Baker Streets to 323 Nelson Avenue. The 82-year-old diner also changed its name to Wait’s on Nelson. The move was prompted by the former landlord’s desire to renovate the building. What’s old is new again as the sandwich bar returns.

Wait’s is known locally for its contributions to the street community and now will be appreciated for being an Inclusive Employer.

Virginia Rasch

Virginia is a writer and copy editor with Koocanusa Publications. She is an avid outdoor recreationist in all seasons and has lived in the Kootenays for 10 years. With degrees in the natural sciences, she has worked as a tour guide, an environmentalist, a writer, and a copy editor of scientific publications. Virginia now brings her passion for everything green to Kootenay Business. View all of Virginia Rasch’s articles

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