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The Bermudian

From art galleries to water truckers, our winners—landscapers, plumbers, beauticians, and more—set the standard for quality products and unparalleled service.

 

AWARD OF EXCELLENCE: OTTO WURZ

Otto Wurz is a well-known shop bursting with quality gifts and trinkets unavailable anywhere else on the island. Despite its popularity, most Bermudians have no idea of the little shop’s legacy. Started in 1928 by Otto Wurz himself, a German with a background in watch and clock repair, the business was bought by Bermudian Ivy Spurling in 1956; today her daughter, Anthea Edwards, and grandsons, John and Christopher, run it. In a time when most businesses are fortunate to stay open for a year, Otto Wurz has proven that lasting success derives from providing customers with one-of-a-kind, quality gifts that will be passed down to future generations, just as Otto Wurz has.

GREAT GIFTS

Amidst the hustle and bustle of shoppers in Hamilton searching for the hottest technological gadgets, you’ll find a store with an old-world charm selling antiques, sterling-silver replicas and tiny treasures from years gone by. Otto Wurz (Vallis Building, Hamilton, 295-1247) is a family-run business chock full of undiscovered gems unique to the island. Next time you have to purchase a gift for a wedding, graduation, anniversary or birthday, Otto Wurz should be your first stop.

MUSIC STORE

The shores are alive with the sound of music thanks to the best music store on the island, Music Box (Bermudiana Arcade, 27 Queen St., Hamilton, 292-8785). Whether you’re looking for the latest Rhianna or the classic Bermudian sounds of the Talbot Brothers, you’ll find that Music Box has it all! And if they don’t, they’re happy to order it for you, which proves that when it comes to making sweet music, none hits higher notes than Music Box.

BOOKSTORE

Like characters in a best-selling novel, the staff at Bermuda Bookstore (3 Queen St., Hamilton, 295-3698) are quirky, enthusiastic and experts in the field of literature. In the depths of the narrow aisles between shelves laden with books, they will help you find exactly what you’re looking for.

TOY STORE

For the littlest people in our lives, Tinker Toys and Cracker Jack trinkets will no longer do. Modern toys are things of wonder with their elaborate designs, technological components and audio-visual appeal. For kids’ toys, it was a hands-down decision that Little People’s Toys (People’s Pharmacy, 62 Victoria St., Hamilton) is the best of the best.

ART GALLERY

If you build it, they will come! Although there’s no Kevin Costner to be found, Masterworks Museum of Bermuda Art (Botanical Gardens, Paget, 236-2950) is certainly a field of dreams. The evidence of such dreams fills the walls, boldly expressing the artists’ thoughts and emotions. Judges agreed that what sets Masterworks apart is that they make art inspiring and approachable for all ages through the kiddie-conscious art programmes and gallery space.

GREETING CARDS

Although it doesn’t have the largest selection of greeting cards, All Wrapped Up (Washington Mall, 7 Reid St., Hamilton, 295-1969) has the best variety for any occasion. Lesser-known brands take centre stage, allowing you to take a breath of Hallmark-free air as you choose a card to celebrate life’s milestones.

FRESH FLOWERS

Quickly becoming a favourite in this category, Flowers by GiMi (HSBC Harbourview Centre, Front St., Hamilton, 297-4464) have a fresh, young and innovative take on things. Their main store on Front Street is often inundated with customers vying for the best in floral creations. Don’t look for your grandmother’s arrangement of dying carnations; the florists at Flowers by GiMi are true artists, leaving their customers in awe every single time!

PLACE TO SATISFY YOUR SWEET TOOTH

It’s not quite Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory; however, Treats of Bermuda (7 Reid St., Hamilton, 296-1123) sure gives the eccentric chocolatier a run for his money! With endless variety and a kid-friendly environment, Treats is the sweetest spot in Bermuda.

PHARMACY

Hear ye, hear ye! After 11 years of People’s Pharmacy reigning supreme in this category, there is a new king to be crowned! Robertson’s Drug Store (24 York St., St. George’s, 297-1828) has earned the right to the best-pharmacy-in-Bermuda title after extensive renovations and the best selection in specialty and international products. Let next year’s battle begin!

HEALTH & FITNESS CLUB

Magnum Powerforce Gym (70 Church St. East, Hamilton, 292-7007) is the centre of the universe for rock-hard beach bodies. Their multilevel gym, spa and Diet Centre make it an all-inclusive health zone sure to get you in shape for bikini season. Their Kid Zone is an added bonus, keeping little ones entertained while you’re sweating it out and encouraging them to stay active and healthy as well.

PET PAMPERING/SUPPLIES

If Noah were to set sail today, we’re sure he would stock up on animal essentials at Noah’s Ark Feed & Supply (3 Marsh Lane, Middle Road, Devonshire, 236-1533). From basics to specialty products, Noah would be fully prepared. Let’s hope he doesn’t stop off at Gosling’s on the way to boarding.

GROCERY STORE

Grocery shopping is serious business; just ask the judge who says she chooses to drive past countless grocery stores to get to Lindo’s Market (4 Watlington Rd. East, Devonshire, 236-5620). To her and countless other Bermudians, Lindo’s Market is simply the best, and going out of the way to shop there is totally worth it!

WAREHOUSE-STYLE SHOPPING

As one judge put it, “How do they make money?” T&L Budget Warehouse (1 St. John’s Road, Pembroke, 292-3140) has quickly become a warehouse-style shopping phenomenon in Bermuda, offering us a little relief in these tough economic times.

KITCHEN TOOLS/ACCESSORIES

Even Julia Childs would be in awe of the all-encompassing collection of kitchenware at International Imports (Par-la-Ville Rd., Hamilton, 292-1661). From the second you walk through its doors you’ll catch glimpses of state-of-the-art gadgets and the highest-grade cookware in the gleaming reflections in professional quality knives nonchalantly hanging on the walls. Go ahead, unleash your inner Wolfgang Puck!

SPORTS EQUIPMENT

Whether you’re already a toned and tough athlete or just aspiring to be, Sports ‘R’ Us (61 Church St. East, Hamilton, 292-1891) is the place for all your sports equipment needs, beating out the competition second year running.

HELPFUL HARDWARE STORE

Yes, not only does it still exist, but our judges swear they provide quality service unmatched by anyone else! This year, Godet & Young Hardware (27 Wellington St., St. George’s, 297-1940) have beat out the competition in the helpful-hardware-store category, proving that biggest is not always best!

BED, BATH & BEYOND

For years, Bermuda’s department stores reined victorious in this category. However, a new era has commenced with the opening of All Wrapped Up Home (Washington Mall, 7 Reid St., Hamilton, 295-1969). Their fresh take on home decorating put them at the top of our judges’ list this year, and their constantly updated Facebook page with pictures of current stock will keep them on the top of your list for years to come.

COMPUTER SALES & SERVICE

Our judges are so impressed with Computer City (Magnolia Place, 45 Victoria St., Hamilton, 292-1774) they combined both the sales and service categories and refused to award them to anyone else! They swear it’s the competitive pricing, quality assurance and efficiency of service that make Computer City a dead-set win.

FURNITURE STORE

The excitement of a new home often stops abruptly when it comes time to decorate. High prices, skimpy selection and, sometimes, just not knowing “how” discourages many would-be decorators. That’s why our judges chose Furniture Walk (12 Harvey Road, Paget, 292-5209) as best furniture store. They have a vast selection and competitive pricing, and their to-die-for displays and helpful sales staff inspire customers and help them tie everything together.

GAS STATION

When you’re in need of more than just gas (like a BLT on a toasted whole-wheat roll), head to Terceira’s North Shore (North Shore, Smith’s, 292-5130) where you can take care of your car as well as your appetite.

LANDSCAPER

Here’s a humdinger: One of our judges had to dig up her neighbours’ yard in order to repair her own cesspit. In order to expedite the messy repair, she called on Dynamic Excavating and Landscaping Ltd. (236-0795), who ripped apart her neighbours’ lawn and swiftly put it back together again in record time. Seriously, we’re talking replanted hedges, rebuilt walls and the whole nine yards. Dynamic’s hard work and efficiency left this judge singing their praises and awarding them best landscaper for 2011.

ELECTRICIAN

In Bermuda, we all know it’s common to know someone who knows someone who can fix the thingamajig that has been broken for months. Such was the case for one judge who, needing an electrician, called someone who knew someone. That someone was Gladstone E. Gomes (331-1928). Mr. Gomes went above and beyond the call of duty, proving that Bermuda networking provides the best representation possible.

BOAT REPAIR

It’s no secret that boats are costly to maintain. When making such an investment, it’s important to feel that the best possible team is taking care of your boat and isn’t going to leave you up the proverbial creek without a paddle. The folks at KM Marine (542-6193) send you out on the water feeling safe and secure.

GARDENING GEAR

Trowels, hoes and rakes galore! Gorham’s (62 St. John’s Rd., Pembroke, 295-1550) helps even novice gardeners develop a green thumb, just in time for the warmer months.

PLUMBER

One judge was quick to sing the praises of Plumbing Concepts (516-6193), telling us that they provide great service, expert advice and comprehensive quotes—tiling, grouting and cleaning up the demolition zone are all included. The best part for our judge? Receiving a bill for half the expected amount.

WATER-TRUCK SERVICE

When in drought, call Oasis Water (504-8765), who will happily rescue your tank from dehydration at any hour.

CAR MECHANIC

When your ride is in need of a face-lift, the grease monkeys at Central Auto (1 Parson’s Rd., Pembroke, 292-5899) provide the best service in the business, even giving customers loner cars for free!

BIKE SALES AND SERVICE

When it comes to two wheels, two cents worth from the experts at Cycle Care (49 Serpentine Rd., Pembroke, 295-0003) is always a welcome commodity. Their two-story location specializes in providing customers with the best bikes, and the quality customer service that comes with them is the best accessory of all.

CLEANING SERVICE

For a bright and shining home or office, call on the Bright Brigade (236-6011). Their expertise in washing, dusting, scrubbing and vacuuming will leave you saying “wow” every single time.

GOVERNMENT SERVICE

Two words: beautiful flowers. The sheer delight of seeing the bursts of beautiful flowers that fill Bermuda’s roundabouts persuaded our judges to choose Bermuda’s Parks Department (169 South Shore Rd., Paget, 236-5920) as the best government service. One judge said, “Each roundabout is always immaculate, and the plants and flowers are always changing.”

UPHOLSTERER

Whether it’s your grandmother’s hand-me-down couch that needs revamping or the torn-up seats on the family boat that need recovering, Creative Upholstery (100 Middle Rd., Warwick, 236-6424 or 236-9135) is a best bet for a beautiful job completed in a timely manner.

INTERIOR DESIGNER

Interior design is no laughing matter, which Patti Crouch and Jill Henneberger of By Design (75 Reid St., Hamilton, 292-6041) understand better than anyone. When you want to whip your home into award-winning shape, call on the savvy pair to turn any space into a By Design success story.

DILIGENT REAL-ESTATE AGENT

Sometimes, it takes a village. In tough economic times, a hard-working and thorough team such as the real-estate agents at Rego Sotheby’s International Realty (Cavendish House, 2 Cavendish Road, Hamilton, 292-3921) can command and get the market rolling when no one else seems able to. Like a well-oiled machine, they keep the real-estate industry moving and Bermudian families happy.

NEW LOCAL AD

All it takes is Sybil Barrington, the Queen of Bermuda, guest starring in a TV ad for The Beach (103 Front St., Hamilton, 292-0219) and the whole island is in stitches, repeating “Oh, honey, some men like it like that!” If we ever doubted The Beach ads could get any raunchier, we weren’t banking on Sybil as their secret weapon.

LOCAL WEBSITE

It didn’t take the judges long to reach a unanimous decision: Bernews.com (www.Bernews.com) is, without a doubt, the best local website. Since its launch, Bernews has quickly become the most trusted online news source in Bermuda, releasing breaking news before anyone else.

FISHING CHARTER

For those in search of a summer afternoon on the water reeling in seriously big fish, look no further than Playmate Charters (292-7131). We’re unsure whether it’s the laid-back, Bermudian fishing crew or the surety of a whopping catch that makes it a must-do, but whatever it is, you’re missing out if you’re not on board.

PRIVATE-PARTY CHARTER

You’ve seen it docked somewhere in Hamilton and run the line: “Oh, my ride has arrived!” And perhaps a few unsuspecting and impressionable tourists have believed you. However, Bermudians know The Venetian (704-3000) is Bermuda’s most luxurious yacht for private-party charters. Our judges recommend it for all occasions. It doesn’t matter if you’re booking a sit-down, six-course dinner for co-workers or a family barbeque with swimming afterwards, the staff aboard The Venetian can accommodate any occasion, making guests truly feel as though their ride has arrived.

INVESTMENT ADVICE

For the second year running, Bermuda Investment Advisory Services (BIAS) (4th floor, Vallis Building, 58 Par-la-Ville Rd., Hamilton, 292-4292) is the number-one place to turn when you need prime investment advice.

BARBER

For the latest in hair-cutting artistry, visit Amoury “Bounty” Boyce at Blades (Washington Mall Upper Level, Hamilton, 295-2647). One judge called his work “truly intricate and creative,” transforming males, both young and old, into genuine fashionistos.

HAIR SALON

In less than a year, Salon Visage (3 Bermuda House Lane, Hamilton, 292-8724) has taken Bermuda by storm, one split-end at a time. With their cutting-edge team of professional hairstylists, Salon Visage is a standout among hair salons. Whether you’re looking for someone to perfect your same-old-same-old or take you through a metamorphosis, the full-time team of Catarina, Freddie and Melissa will make sure you’re the “mane” event.

HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONAL

An apple a day keeps the doctor away. But what if you don’t mind seeing your doctor? For patients of The Family Practice Group (7 The Lane, Paget, 236-0001), a visit to the doctors that make up this unique and caring practice is always a joy, making it a favourite among our judges.

CATERER

We can all agree that the most important component of a successful party is good food. Whether it’s a last-minute cocktail party or a long-awaited wedding, Buzz Catering (Washington Mall Upper Level, Hamilton, 295-4903) pulls out all the stops.

TRAVEL AGENT

Everyone gets what they want when booking with C-Travel (27 Queen St., Hamilton, 292-3033). Whether you’re taking a family trip to Disney World or an adventurous safari in Botswana, flights and hotels can be booked online, over the phone or in person with Bermuda’s best travel agent.

BEST PLACE FOR A MANI/PEDI

It was a unanimous decision that the best place to get your tootsies taken care of and your digits destressed is Gillian’s (14 South Shore Rd., Devonshire, 232-0496). The friendly staff, out-of-town location and cosy environment make it a favourite islandwide.

SPA

It’s no secret that every female in Bermuda has a special love for the Willow Stream Spa (South Shore Road, Southampton, 239-6924) at The Fairmont Southampton Resort, which is why we weren’t surprised when our judges unanimously chose it as this year’s best spa. It offers a full menu of spa services and amenities guaranteed to help you relax and unwind while overlooking the beautiful South Shore.

ELECTRONIC SALES & SERVICE

It’s a fact that Bermudians take their home entertainment seriously, but the extremists in this case are the staff at M&M International (61 Church St. East, Hamilton, 292-8158). For the best deals, most-advanced stereo systems and unsurpassed plasma-screen TVs, there’s no place as electrifying as M&M.

CELL-PHONE SALES & SERVICE

“Can you hear me now? What about now? Now?” If you’ve uttered these words, even once, it’s probably because CellOne (22 Reid St., Hamilton, 700-7000) isn’t your cellular-phone service provider. In addition to their excellent product, as one judge pointed out, their exceptional customer-service staff seals the deal.

TAXI DRIVER

For the second year in a row, Olney Bean (734-7872) has been awarded the best taxi driver in Bermuda. She offers the perfect combination of an infectious personality and extreme professionalism, and you’ll get to your destination in one piece and in a better mood than before.

FRIENDLIEST CUSTOMER SERVICE

It’s not the delicious food and drinks at Down to Earth (56 Reid St., Hamilton, 292-5639) that caught our judges’ attention. No, in fact, it’s the outstanding customer service that sets the health store apart from all other establishments.

THE JUDGES

Krista Viera, accounts manager, Cosmic

Dueane Dill, vice president, Atlantic Security Ltd.

Oneia Sharrieff, financial accountant, Axis Specialty Ltd.

Christina Booth, executive secretary/office administrator, Tokio Millennium Re Ltd.

Chris Swan, deputy principal, T.N. Tatem Middle School

 

 

 

 

People's Choice Awards

 

This year—for the first time ever—The Bermudian magazine opened up the Best of Bermuda Awards to you, the people, in our People’s Choice Awards. We were overwhelmed by the response and thank everyone who participated. Here are the results:

 

Best Gifts: This category was a close call between Brown & Co. and Island Shop, with the Island Shop narrowly winning the award with 19.8 percent of the vote to 17.8 percent. Those who chose to write in had a lot of affection for the Irish Linen Shop.

 

Best Art Gallery: Well, it’s clear: people love Masterworks Museum of Bermuda Art! Taking 31.4 percent of the overall vote, the museum is the solid favourite in the Best Art Gallery category.

 

Best Government Service: The write-ins were hilarious for this category, with comments like “oxymoron,” “none of the above” and “Ha! Are you kidding?” Negative comments aside, the fast ferries narrowly edged out the Bermuda Fire Service for the award.

 

Best Helpful Hardware Store: Clearly, voters think Gorham’s is the Best Helpful Hardware Store by far taking a clear majority, while Godet & Young in St. George’s (the Best of Bermuda winner) received a large number of write-in responses.

 

Best Car Mechanic: This was obviously a difficult category for our voters—all the choices were neck and neck—but Cardoza’s Garage narrowly received the overall win, followed closely by Weir Enterprises and Rayclan. There were over 100 write-in responses for a huge number of different mechanics, showing that there are lots of people out there doing a great job!

2011 Best of Bermuda

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