The Team

 

 

 

 

Bruce Garrett - Managing Director

Bruce caught the hotel bug while washing dishes at a local hotel as a part-time job while still at school.  The other side of the pot-wash bench seemed so much more glamorous!  

After studying hotel management he took on a trainee manager position with Hyatt, focussing on Food and Beverage services.  Following this, a brief stint with IHG before embarking on his OE.  

Bruce traveled extensively through the USA before basing himself in England for seven years, working for Forte, Marriot, and Thistle hotels, ranging in size from 50 to 800 rooms. 

An opportunity to work at the world-renown Huka Lodge brought him back to New Zealand.  This was followed up with his first general manager stint at Wharekauhau Country Estate, another luxury lodge.  An opening at The George took him back to city life, and 16 years later he has steered the company to considerable success along with adding other hotels to the management company.

 

 

 

Georgina Torrington - Director of Sales and Marketing

Georgina, is a passionate expert with honed sales and marketing skills in the hotel, tourism, events and hospitality sectors.  Her first job in the industry was as a duty manager and waitress at a restaurant and cocktail bar while studying at the University of Waikato.

After completing a B.Soc.Sci. (Hons) Georgina discovered she had become addicted to the hospitality sector and embarked on her first full-time role as functions manager at a privately owned hotel and function centre in Hamilton which is where she caught the ‘hotel bug’.  Following this was a short stint with MCK hotels, a 6-year foray into larger function centres then the opening and operation of Castaways Restaurant & Function Centre before returning to the hotel sector working with Hilton Auckland and InterContinental Hotels Group.

Georgina brings a wealth of knowledge with a keen understanding of current trends.  With a broad range of experience from front-of-house restaurants, event management, sales, marketing, and brand development she loves using data and insights to develop and sell the guest experience.

With a quick wit and inclusive management style, Georgina develops significant relationships to help grow the Brook Serene business.  In her downtime you can usually find Georgina in her garden, fishing for trout in one of the many lakes and rivers of Canterbury or hiking the hills in pursuit of deer with her husband Andrew and her two faithful K9 companions.

 

 

 

 

John Etheridge - Hotel Manager, The George
 

John graduated in 1994 from Canterbury University with a BSc then completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Management in 1995. Having completed his university studies John began his first foray in hotels working at the Parkroyal Christchurch holding roles in F&B, finance and HR. 

In 2000 John and his wife became restaurant owners (The Rock Café in Sumner) until the sale of the business in December 2005. After selling the business and travelling the world John held various management roles in Central Otago including the opening of a boutique property in Cardrona Valley before opening the Queenstown Park Boutique Hotel.  Their next move was to Auckland where John held the position of F&B Manager at Hotel deBrett. 

In 2013 John and Donna returned to Christchurch and in 2015 John gained the position of Operations Manager at The George then moved into the role of Hotel Manager November 2019. 

John is also a passionate surfer, keen skier, walker of dogs (particularly his own) and enjoys fine food and wine. 

 

 

Christine McDonald -Hotel Manager, Regent of Rotorua

 

Born in Rotorua and raised in the beautiful rural community of Hamurana, on the northern Shores of Lake Rotorua, Christine holds a Bachelor of Arts majoring in English and French from Te Whare Wananga o Waikato – University of Waikato

Christine started her career in banking.  She was lucky enough to transfer to the London branch of the BNZ in 1988 where Christine worked for 12 months before travelling through Europe and Asia for 6 months on her way home to Aotearoa.

Bitten badly by the travel bug Christine managed to stay in NZ for 9 months before heading back to London 1988 where she was to meet her Finnish husband and shortly thereafter move to Sweden where Christine stayed for 20 years.

While in Sweden Christine made the transition from banking to hotels. Starting out as a Room Attendant and then holding roles from Housekeeping Supervisor, Front Office Manager to Assistant Manager and even Restaurant Owner.

Starting with Regent of Rotorua in 2015 as Assistant Manager Christine progressed into the Hotel Manager’s Role in February 2018.

Life outside of work is very full spending time with family and loyal K9 companions – their White German Shepherds Sacha, Ziggy and most recently the addition of their third fur-baby Koira.

(Fun fact – completed internationally in Barbershop singing with Rönninge Show Chorus of Sweden Indianapolis 2004 and Hawaii 2008 - Fourth and Fifth places).