Airport Merchants Receive “Best Airport & Concessionaire Awards”

Industry Contest Recognizes Philadelphia International Airport

Just a few months after Marketplace Food & Shops in the B/C Connector at Philadelphia International Airport was named “Best Food and Beverage Program” among large airports in North America by Airports Council International, several Airport merchants garnered recognition in the “Best Airport & Concessions Awards” at the 2009 Airport Revenue Conference and Exhibition. Airport Revenue News, a leading industry publication, sponsors the annual conference and exhibition, which includes the awards event.

Continuing Marketplace’s long tradition of excellence in Airport concessions, six merchants received special recognition: The Paradies Shops, the Hudson Group and OTG Management, which operate several concessions at the Airport, as well as retailers Taxco Sterling and Techshowcase and upscale wine bar Vino Volo.

“Our merchants and the concessions they operate are among the finest at any airport anywhere,” said Acting Director of Aviation Mark Gale. “The awards and recognition they’ve consistently earned from their industry peers is evidence of that. Their commitment to customer satisfaction, innovation and quality dovetails with the City’s mission to provide a first-class airport and was also a factor in the Airport being ranked “Highest in Customer Service for Large Airports” in the J.D. Power and Associates 2008 Airport Customer Satisfaction Study.”

Vino Volo, which opened its first Airport location on the B/C Connector a year ago and added a second site on the new D/E Connector, led the Marketplace honorees with awards in five categories in the small retailers division. The upscale wine bar was singled out for Highest Regard for Customer Service, Best Overall Retailer, Food Operator with the Highest Regard for Customer Service, Best Food & Beverage Brand Operator and Best Food & Beverage Operator.

For the 13th consecutive year, The Paradies Shops was named Retailer with the Highest Regard for Customer Service in the large retailers division. The Paradies Shops manages Brooks Brothers, PGA Tour Shop, Barb’s Harley Davidson, and Brighton Collectibles on the B/C Connector; Pennsylvania Market (B/C Connector, Concourse E), Explore Philadelphia (Terminal A-East), CNBC News Philadelphia (Terminals A-East thru E) and Philadelphia News (Terminal D). Brooks Brothers also earned recognition as Best Retail Specialty Brand Operator.

In the large retailers division, The Hudson Group won the award for Best News & Gift Operator. The Hudson Group manages Hudson News, Hudson News Aero Mart and Hudson News Euro Café in Terminals A-West and F.

OTG Management was named Best Food & Beverage Operator in the large retailers division. OTG manages Cibo Bistro and Wine Bar (Concourses A-West and B), Cibo Express Gourmet Market (Concourse E), Jet Rock Bar and Grille (Concourses B and D, Terminal F), and Sky Asian Bistro (Concourse C).

Taxco Sterling, which specializes in fine jewelry, was recognized as Best DBE (Disadvantaged Business Enterprise) Operator among large retailers. Taxco Sterling has shops in Terminal A-West, Concourse B and on the D/E Connector.

Techshowcase, a new merchant on the D/E Connector, won the award for Best New Specialty Retail Concept in the small retailers division. Techshowcase is a member of the Airport Wireless concession group, which has locations on Concourses B and C and in Terminal A-West.

The latest recognition for Airport concessions comes as Philadelphia International opened 10 new retail, food and beverage locations on the D/E Connector that debuted in December and also as plans are progressing for more concessions on the D and E concourses. The D and E concourses are among the Airport’s oldest as well as busiest, and efforts have been focused on bringing more food and retail options to that area of the terminal complex.

“We’ve been working closely with Marketplace and our airline tenants to improve concession offerings in the D and E terminals,” said James Tyrrell, Deputy Director of Aviation for Property Management and Business Development. “This is an area of the Airport that has seen a tremendous growth in passenger traffic in recent years. The food, beverage and retail shops that opened on the D/E Connector have greatly enhanced the passenger experience there, and we’re very excited about exploring new opportunities to build upon that on the D and E concourses, especially with the new gates that are being built at the end of E concourse.”

Ranked “Highest in Customer Satisfaction for Large Airports” in the J.D. Power and Associates 2008 Airport Customer Satisfaction Study, Philadelphia International Airport is owned and operated by the City of Philadelphia. The Airport is a self-sustaining entity that operates without the use of local tax dollars. It is one of the largest economic engines in Pennsylvania, generating an estimated $14.2 billion in spending to the regional economy and employing a workforce of nearly 42,000.