Originally from Wales, Scott O’Connor began working in the hospitality industry from a young age, dabbling in a multitude of areas, including bars, nightclubs, restaurants and hotel chains. In 2017, he moved to New Zealand to begin his working holiday, where he was able to make a number of connections with Kiwis in hospitality management and eventually take on the role of General Manager at The Churchill.
Located on the 20th floor of the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel in Auckland, The Churchill is a luxury rooftop gin and cocktail bar that boasts nearly 200 gin styles and a curated Sir Winston Churchill-themed cocktail menu. The bar provides a sophisticated and high-class atmosphere with its 1920s-inspired decor and stunning panoramic views of the city.
O’Connor’s vision for The Churchill is to deliver incredible customer experiences through the art of creative mixology and service. The bar prides itself on treating service with a fine dining approach, sharing with customers their knowledge and passion. Its highly trained team tailor every customer experience to the tastes and desires of individuals.
Without his team’s incredible enthusiasm and dedication, O’Connor stated that The Churchill would cease to exist.
“They are the backbone of the business. As a leader, my main role is to supply them with the tools and knowledge they need to deliver exceptional services to our guests”.
The Churchill has just launched a new menu in time for summer. In partnership with over ten fantastic New Zealand gin distillers, the bar has debuted a gin offering, which for the first time, consists of only New Zealand-made gin. The gin can be mixed with a range of artisan mixers from the likes of East Imperial and Fever-Tree, served in its signature burgundy Italian wine glass.
O’Connor hopes to elevate New Zealand’s presence in the global stage for luxury bars and push The Churchill up to the calibre of the world’s top 50 bars.
“Auckland is quite far behind some of the major cities in the world, but we are definitely starting to see a trend in increased demand for internationally stylish and experience-led bars. Guests are slowly beginning to view bars as we do restaurants - a place you go to please your senses and experience new things with friends and loved ones”.
In 2020, O’Connor launched his own gin brand named Sir Winston Gin. He plans to launch a new global gin brand and a series of high-end cocktail bars across the world, first beginning with Auckland.