Graduate Story – Regan Braithwaite

Mavericks Taupo

Regan has always been keen to work in hospitality – his hard work, studies with QRC and love for helping people has led him to becoming General Manager for a new restaurant/event center in Taupo! He loved the fact that he could be based in Queenstown, New Zealand’s Hospitality & Tourism hub, while working towards a Diploma in Hospitality Management – a hands on course where the theory backs up the practical. Thriving in the food and beverage industry, we’re excited to see how Regan grows as General Manager and where this new journey will take him!

“From food costs, hospitality law, wine studies, human resources and marketing – everything I learnt at QRC, I use on a daily basis.”

Continue reading below to learn more about Regan and his exciting career working as a General Manager since leaving QRC.

On the Couch with Regan Braithwaite:

Why did you choose to follow a career in tourism/hospitality?
I have always been a hands-on worker, thriving in busy environments with lots of pressure. I live for working with people, conflict management/dealing with complaints and managing fast paced environments which hospitality gives me. 

Why did you choose QRC?
I chose QRC  because of the great name behind it – all leading hospitality brands know about QRC, with excellent graduates all over the world working in management roles shortly after studying. I loved the location of QRC, being in a thriving tourist town. 

Where did you undertake your internship? (job/position)
I started my internship at The Heritage Hotel as a receptionist. Once my hours were completed I moved back home to assist in opening the new Lone Star Rotorua to complete my 9 months.

What was the biggest “take away” from your internship experience?
I learnt so much about myself, what the hospitality industry was for me and what I enjoy doing for work. I thrive on Food and Beverage, I learnt that working in restaurants & bars is something I love.

Tell me about your journey since leaving QRC.
I graduated and moved to Auckland, I was the Restaurant Manager at Lone Star New Lynn, I then moved into Lone Star Head Office as the North Island Operations Coordinator, and worked in Lone Star & Joes Garage in Hamilton shortly after that. I moved back to Taupo & worked in Finns Bistro & Beer Garden which was a Restaurant/Bar/Night Club/Beer Garden & Gaming Lounge while I did my real estate license and now I am working alongside an owner setting up a restaurant & bar.

What role are you in now?
My current role is the General Manager for ‘Mavericks Good Buggas Gastro Pub & Mile High Conference and Events Centre‘. Due to open at the end of April 2022. It is part of a brand new complex called The Landing Taupo.

What are your main responsibilities?
I am working directly alongside the owner creating the menu, designing the layout, assisting with the build project, marketing, human resource management, everything that needs to be done to get our venue open!

How did QRC help prepare you for your current job?
Everything I learnt I use on a daily basis – especially for this new business! From food costs, hospitality law, wine studies, human resources, marketing and leadership.

What do you enjoy the most about your current position?
Being able to get creative, we’ve come up with a Top Gun inspired restaurant, bar, beer garden plus a conference and events center. Using the term ‘Mavericks’ as our name is great because we are not going to do anything like any other venue does. We’ve even got a replica of a WW2 US Navy Fighter Plane hanging from the main atrium! 

What are your plans for the future?
Hopefully over the next few years we will be able to franchise or add more locations for ‘Mavericks’ so I’ll keep working on that!

What’s the best advice you were ever given?
Make sure you see hospitality as a career path – not many do, but those who do thrive. 


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