2019 Best Of Business (BOB) Awards

by CoVaBizMag

Business Travel

 

Best Airline for Business Travel

Gold
Delta
Eighty thousand employees worldwide power Delta Air Lines, the U.S. global airline leader in products, services, innovation, reliability and customer experience. The airline is the world’s No. 1 carrier in total revenues, serving about 200 million travelers every year with flights for business trips and personal vacations across the globe.
Delta.com

Silver
Southwest
Southwest.com

Bronze
American Airlines
AA.com

 

Best Airport for Business Travel

Gold
Norfolk International Airport
Conveniently located one mile east of I-64 in Norfolk near the Virginia Beach border, Norfolk International Airport is the major airport serving Coastal Virginia and northeast North Carolina. Six airlines—Allegiant, American, Delta, Frontier, Southwest and United—provide convenient flights connecting you directly to major cities and hubs for national and international travel.
2200 Norview Ave., Norfolk. 757- 857-3351.
NorfolkAirport.com

Silver
Richmond International Airport
FlyRichmond.com

Bronze
Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport
FlyPHF.com

 

Best Airport Restaurant

Gold
Starbucks
Get the fuel you need to survive that early flight or keep going during a long day of travel with coffee from the always fast and delicious Starbucks. Quick bites to eat are available, along with vitamin-packed juices for those preferring a nutritious lift.
Starbucks.com

Silver
Here’s to the Heroes
NorfolkAirport.com

Bronze
Great American Bagel
GreatAmericanBagel.com

 

Best Car Rental Company

Gold
Enterprise Rent-A-Car
Make the rental process as simple as possible with Enterprise’s Hilltop location. With just a few clicks on your laptop or phone, you can reserve the ideal car for getting around town or heading out on a business trip. With additional pick-up and drop-off locations throughout the state and nationwide, you’ll find your rental experience quick and convenient.
1845 Laskin Road, Virginia Beach. 757-422-6900.
Enterprise.com

Silver
Budget Rental Car
Budget.com

Bronze
National Car Rental
NationalCar.com

 

Best Executive Car Service

Gold
Superior Executive Transportation
Corporate VIPs, travel agents and other busy individuals rely on Superior Executive Transportation—known as SET—to travel throughout Coastal Virginia and have done so for over a decade. They know they’re considered friends, even on the first meeting, and will receive special attention and safe transportation.
4571 Columbus St., Virginia Beach. 757-567-0353.
GetSetGo.us

Silver
Orange Peel Transportation
OrangePeelTransportation.com

Bronze
Williamsburg Chauffer Service
WilliamsburgChauffeur.com

 

Best Travel Agency

Gold
Expedia CruiseShipCenters
Whether you’re new to cruising or are planning your 10th voyage in 10 years, Expedia CruiseShipCenters can find a vacation to meet your needs. They have inside knowledge of popular and more off-the-beaten path destinations, experience with a number of cruise lines and even know the distinct personalities of individual ships.
1860 Laskin Road #112, Virginia Beach. 757-550-1184.
CruiseShipCenters.com

Silver
Warwick Travel Services Inc
WarwickTravel.com

Bronze
CI Azumano Travel
CIAzumano.com

 

Excellence in Business

 

Best Business Incubator/Startup Program

Gold
Suffolk Executive Offices*
With the slogan “We run your office, while you run your business,” Suffolk Executive Offices provides the support you need at the level of support right for you. If you’d like to secure your own office with a receptionist and meeting rooms, share a space or simply rely on services on an as-needed basis while using a professional address, you can—all with fellow entrepreneurs nearby to interact with.
425 W Washington St., Suffolk. 757- 925-4744.
SuffolkExecutiveOffices.com

Silver
Center for Retail Excellence
RetailAlliance.com

Bronze
StartWheel
StartWheel.org

 

Best Coastal Virginia-Made Food/Beverage

Gold
The Bee and The Biscuit
This small, cottage restaurant in the country relies on fresh produce grown by local farmers to serve memorable breakfasts and lunches, complete with desserts and drinks. Reservations are available for small events in this charming setting, made all the more special with cozy fireside seating in the fall and winter or outdoor dining in the spring and summer.
1785 Princess Anne Road, Virginia Beach. 757-689-6243.
BeeBiscuit.com

Silver
The Creative Wedge: An Artisan Market
TheCreativeWedge.com

Bronze
Wasserhund Brewing Company
WasserhundBrewing.com

 

Best Coastal Virginia-Made Product

Gold
Academics in a Box, Inc.
Academics in a Box created Groovy Lab in a Box to encourage children ages 8 and up to channel their inner “STEMist,” the part of them that naturally embraces science, technology, engineering and math. Each box, delivered monthly with a subscription, provides a way to complete a STEM project.
1508 Sams Circle, Suite 102–536, Chesapeake. 888-938-3848.
GroovyLabInABox.com

Silver
Pierce’s Pitt Bar-B-Que
Pierces.com

Bronze
North End Bag Company
NorthEndBagCompany.com

 

Best Local Company with a National Presence

Gold
Electronic Systems, Inc.
One of the largest providers of customized technology solutions in the Mid-Atlantic region, Electronic Systems, part of Xerox Business Solutions, reaches customers in Virginia Beach, Richmond, Roanoke and Chantilly. They also partner with Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Cisco, HP Inc, Dell, Lenovo and Microsoft to deliver exceptional advancements to their clients.
369 Edwin Drive, Virginia Beach. 757-497-8000.
ESI.net

Silver
Smithfield Foods Inc
SmithfieldFoods.com

Bronze
Academics in a Box, Inc.
GroovyLabInABox.com

 

Best New Business

Gold
Suffolk Executive Offices*
425 W Washington St., Suffolk. 757- 925-4744.
SuffolkExecutiveOffices.com

Silver
Upscale Avenues Realty Group
UpscaleAvenues.com

Bronze
Cater Boom
CaterBoom.com

 

Best New Local Project/Development

Gold
Town Center of Virginia Beach
Located 10 miles from the Virginia Beach Oceanfront and Norfolk, Town Center is conveniently situated in the heart of the region and offers a variety of businesses, shopping and entertainment choices. The resident population has grown to 934 units; hundreds of guests visit The Westin and Hilton hotels; and many more locals and tourists frequent the 1,300-seat Sandler Center and the 450,000 square feet filled with some of the top stores in Coastal Virginia.
222 Central Park Ave., Virginia Beach. 757-497-2113.
VaBeachTownCenter.com

Silver
Gather – Norfolk
WorkAtGather.com

Bronze
ViBe Creative District
VibeCreativeDistrict.org

 

Best Small Business

Gold
VIBEvents Group, LLC
With over 20 years of experience, these event professionals specialize in developing concepts and creating memorable corporate and special events. They plan every aspect of events whether it’s designed for team building, branding, fundraising or celebrating.
1244 Executive Blvd Ste. A-101, Chesapeake. 757-810-8371.
PlanMyVibe.com

Silver
A Glawmorous Pet Pawlor
Facebook.com/AGlawmorousPetPawlor

Bronze
Diamond Auto Detailing
Diamond-Auto-Detail.net

 

Meetings and Gatherings

 

Best After-Work Happy Hour

Gold
Grain, Hilton Norfolk The Main
Tops for views of Norfolk and Portsmouth and tops for beer selection, this beer garden caps The Hilton Norfolk The Main. Whether you choose inside or outside seating, drinks or food, your eyes and tastebuds will be satisfied with the upscale décor and dining delights and drinks presented with a laidback approach.
100 E Main St., Norfolk. 757-763-6279.
GrainNorfolk.com

Silver
Taste
Taste.Online

Bronze
Waterman’s Surfside Grille
Watermans.com

 

Best Coffee Meeting Location

Gold
Starving Artist Cafe
Artist Kim Keene grew her art gallery, studio and frame shop into this artsy café serving breakfast and lunch and showing off the talent of fellow local creators. At night, Kim opens the space for art classes, musicians, meetings and events to further fuel creative souls with education and companionship.
4408 Colley Ave., Norfolk. 757-305-9290.
StarvingArtistNorfolk.com

Silver
Gather
WorkAtGather.com

Bronze
Three Ships Coffee Roasters
ThreeShipsCoffee.com

 

Best Corporate Event Caterer

Gold
Mermaid Catering
Owners Chef Julie Aubrey and Christopher Johnson bring over a decade of experience in cooking, menu planning and event execution to Mermaid Catering. Their well-trained team, with degrees from the Culinary Institute of Virginia and Johnson and Wales University, the country’s top schools, ensure every bite guests take is a delicious one and presented in a uniquely designed environment for a memorable event.
485 S Independence Blvd., Suite 108, Virginia Beach. 757-358-7904.
MermaidCatering.com

Silver
Delta Hotels by Marriott Chesapeake Norfolk
Marriott.com

Bronze
Sweetwater Cuisine
SweetwaterCuisine.com

 

Best Delivered Lunch

Gold
Gourmet Gang
Enjoy uniquely imaginative and top-notch ingredients when indulging in the lunch provided by this experienced team. With more than 27 years in the business, Gourmet Gang knows what people need midday for a boost of energy and a mini-treat to keep on working.
Gourmet Gang has locations throughout Coastal Virginia. 757-857-6100, Ext. 1.
GourmetGang.com

Silver
TASTE
Taste.Online

Bronze
Mermaid Catering
MermaidCatering.com

 

Best Event Planner

Gold
The Happy Hour Hostess
The three professionals behind The Happy Hour Hostess, with expertise in event planning (weddings, corporate events, birthdays and more), floral arrangement and graphic design, have earned rave reviews from clients: “I couldn’t imagine anything more perfect. There was not a moment of stress on my end.” “Took all our worries away.” “Professional and extremely knowledgeable in every aspect of their industry.”
757-773-5351.
TheHappyHourHostess.com

Silver
VIBEvents Group
PlanMyVibe.com

Bronze
Mermaid Catering
MermaidCatering.com

 

Best Golf Course for Business Outings

Gold
Cavalier Golf and Yacht Club
For over 90 years, the Cavalier Golf & Yacht Club has been one of the best places for Coastal Virginians to connect and celebrate, either for a casual meal, a once-in-a-lifetime family-and-friends event or a business-solidifying round of golf in a pristine setting.
1052 Cardinal Road, Virginia Beach, VA 23451. 757-428-3131.
CavalierGYC.com

Silver
Greenbrier Country Club
ClubCorp.com

Bronze
Kiskiack Golf Club
KiskiackGC.com

 

Best Hotel for Business Travel

Gold
Norfolk Hilton The Main
In the heart of Norfolk, this swanky high-rise is a step above even most big-city gems. Views of the Elizabeth River, Norfolk and Portsmouth tempt guests to stay put in the hotel, but if they manage to pull themselves away, they’ll find it easy to reach their destination from this conveniently located upscale hotel.
100 E Main St., Norfolk. 757-763-6200.
TheMainNorfolk.com

Silver
Delta Hotels by Marriott Chesapeake Norfolk
Marriott.com

Bronze
The Westin Virginia Beach Town Center
Marriott.com

 

Best Local Teambuilding Experience

Gold
Escape Room
You have only yourself, your team and your collective wit to figure out the mystery in front of you—and escape the room you’ve entered within 60 minutes. Solve puzzles, look for clues and find the missing links to free your group—and get to know yourself and your fellow adventurers better in the process.
408 Investors Place, Suite 107, Virginia Beach. 757-228-7577.
EscapeRoomVirginiaBeach.com

Silver
Topgolf
Topgolf.com/US/Virginia-Beach

Bronze
iFLY Va Beach, Indoor Skydiving
IFlyWorld.com/Virginia-Beach

 

Best Lunch Meeting Location

Gold
Luminous Restaurant and Lounge*
In this restaurant in the newly remodeled Delta Hotel, part of the Marriott family, contemporary décor meets a convenient location. Diners are provided with the ideal setting for those looking for a stylish locale for a lunch sure to wow clients and further business relationships.
725 Woodlake Drive, Chesapeake. 757-523-1500.
Marriott.com

Silver
TASTE in Ghent
Taste.Online/Locations/Ghent

Bronze
Varia
VariaNorfolk.com

 

Best Networking Event

Gold
BizConnect Hampton Roads*
Connecting with potential clients is easier as a member of BizConnect Hampton Roads, which hosts events open to all Coastal Virginia movers and shakers, and provides vital support with marketing and public relations education and services. Meet fellow business owners and learn how your can assist each other in growing your career or small business.
318 W 21st St., Norfolk. 757-927-5200.
BizConnectHR.com

Silver
Retail Alliance Meet & Greets
RetailAlliance.com

Bronze
BNI Southeastern VA
BNI-SeVa.com

 

Best Place for Business Meetings/Conferences

Gold
Delta Hotels by Marriott Chesapeake Norfolk*
Delta Hotels Chesapeake Norfolk upgraded its interior recently for a welcoming and sophisticated look added to its already comfortable meeting rooms designed for professionals needing today’s technology. With its central location in the Greenbrier section of Chesapeake, locals and travelers alike will find it easy to access with nearby after-work entertainment as well.
725 Woodlake Drive, Chesapeake. 757-523-1500.
Marriott.com

Silver
Hilton Norfolk The Main
TheMainNorfolk.com

Bronze
Sweet Magnolias at Sweetwater Cuisine
SweetwaterCuisine.com

 

Best Place to Close a Deal

Gold
BizConnect Hampton Roads*
318 W 21st St., Norfolk. 757-927-5200.
BizConnectHR.com

Silver
Luminous Restaurant and Lounge
Marriott.com

Bronze
Saltine
SaltineNorfolk.com

 

Best Restaurant for Business Dinners

Gold
Luminous Restaurant and Lounge
725 Woodlake Drive, Chesapeake. 757-523-1500.
Marriott.com

Silver
Varia
VariaNorfolk.com

Bronze
Ruth’s Chris Steak House
RuthsChris.com

 

Best Small Venue for Meetings and Events

Gold
Delta Hotels by Marriott Chesapeake Norfolk*
725 Woodlake Drive, Chesapeake. 757-523-1500.
Marriott.com

Silver
Meet@319 – The Essex Building
VIADesignArchitects.com

Bronze
Sweet Magnolias at Sweetwater Cuisine
SweetwaterCuisine.com

 

Best Sporting Event to Take Clients To

Gold
Norfolk Tides
The farm team for the Baltimore Orioles competes in a Downtown Norfolk stadium with water views, easy parking and tempting food, all perfect for getting to know potential and trusted clients better in a casual setting. Day and night games, during the week and weekends, give you the ultimate flexibility in finding a time that works for everyone who needs to step out of the office, while still advancing their careers.
140 Park Ave., Norfolk. 757-622-2222.
MILB.com/Norfolk

Silver
ODU Football Games
ODUSports.com

Bronze
Norfolk Admirals Hockey
NorfolkAdmirals.com

 

Best Young Professionals Network

Gold
LEAD Hampton Roads*
Coordinated by the Hampton Roads Chamber, LEAD is a combination of three programs for Coastal Virginia’s leaders and emerging leaders. Whether you’re a high schooler already thinking about how to leave a legacy, a younger professional aged 21–29 looking for specific leadership training or a more experienced professional striving to widen your circle of influence, LEAD presents the training and opportunities for you.
500 E Main St., Norfolk. 757-622-5563.
LeadHamptonRoads.net

Silver
tHRive, The Young Professionals of the Hampton Roads Chamber
HamptonRoadsChamber.com/Page/Thrive

Bronze
CBDX
TheCBDX.com

 

Professional Development

 

Best Business School

Gold
Old Dominion University*
The Strome College of Business at Old Dominion University welcomes top undergraduate and graduate students preparing to meet today and tomorrow’s business challenges. Faculty and local business leaders guide students to impact Coastal Virginia in areas vital to our community, including maritime and supply chain management. They also foster a spirit of entrepreneurship and encourage new business development.
2004 Constant Hall, Norfolk. 757-683-3520.
ODU.edu/Business

Silver
South University
Go.SouthUniversity.edu

Bronze
Raymond A. Mason School of Business at William and Mary
Mason.WM.edu

 

Best Executive Training

Gold
LEAD Hampton Roads*
500 E Main St., Norfolk. 757-622-5563.
LeadHamptonRoads.net

Silver
Dale Carnegie
DaleCarnegie.com

 

Best MBA Program

Gold
Old Dominion University*
2004 Constant Hall, Norfolk. 757-683-3520.
ODU.edu/Business

Silver
Raymond A. Mason School of Business at William and Mary
Mason.WM.edu

Bronze
Saint Leo University
Info.Online.SaintLeo.edu

 

 

Best Professional Development Workshop

Gold
Woodard Associates – Julie Woodard*
757-769-6138.
Woodard-Associates.com

Silver
LEAD Hampton Roads
LeadHamptonRoads.net

Bronze
Retail Alliance STRIVE workshops
RetailAlliance.com

 

People in Business

 

Best Local Entrepreneur

Xerxes L. Nabong*
Almost 20 years ago, Xerxes Nabong co-founded Virginia Financial Planning to recommend options for employers and affluent individuals looking to build retirement and investment income and choose sound insurance coverage. In addition to assisting his clients, he sits on the leadership board of the American Diabetes Association of Hampton Roads and is a founding member of the Beach Ambassadors, a grassroots group supporting charities through events.
Virginia Financial Planning is located at 4669 South Blvd., Suite 105, Virginia Beach. 757-394-3486 Ext. 302.
VaFinancialPlanning.com

 

Best Local Leader Making a Difference

Laura Henderson – BizConnect Hampton Roads
Laura Henderson created BizConnect Hampton Roads after more than 15 years at Pilot Media. The networking and marketing/public relations group grew from her business WIN LOCAL STUFF, which promotes retail stores, restaurants, artists, service providers and more. She is a member of the Hampton Roads Chamber, Downtown Norfolk Council, the Retail Alliance, LOVEVA, Hampton Roads Business Outreach, the Ghent Business Association and serves on the Board of the Ghent Business Association, VisitNorfolk and Troopster Donations.
BizConnect Hampton Roads is located at 318 W 21st St., Norfolk, VA 23517. 757-927-5200.
BizConnectHR.com

 

Best Salesperson

Matt Tuttle – Total Business Solutions, Inc.
Matt is vice president of Total Business Solutions, Inc. and gives back to both his business and personal communities with a long list of leadership and civic engagement: The Portsmouth Partnership Executive Board, recruitment chair; Young Executive Symposium (Yes!), SP Richards Company; Vann H. Lefcoe Leadership Development Program; Groupe Lacasse VIP Office Furniture Dealer Association; Art Jones Memorial Golf Tournament Committee; The Portsmouth Assembly; Nansemond-Suffolk Academy Art Show; and Virginia Tech Monogram Club (Football Alumni).
Total Business Solutions is located at 3413 Griffin St., Portsmouth. 757-398-8312.
TotalBusinessSolutions.com

 

Best Social Media Personality

Naoma Doriguzzi
A social media consultant and blogger, Naoma strategizes with small businesses to maximize their reach online. She reports on the latest social media applications, technology and trends on Saturday mornings on WVEC-13. She is passionate about giving back to the community and consults with several nonprofits.
NaomaDoriguzzi.com

 

Business Person of the Year

Julie Woodard*
757-769-6138.
Woodard-Associates.com

 

Innovator of the Year

Chelsea Mandello – Troopster
U.S. Navy Petty Officer Chelsea Mandello founded Troopster while serving as a Navy photojournalist. Her goal was to make it easy for family and friends to send care packages to loved ones and for those loved ones to receive the packages quickly. Mandello knew firsthand the heartache of opening a package, only to be met with expired or melted contents. Troopster provides one-stop shopping and shipping services and masterfully understands the military mail system.
Troopster.org

 

Outstanding Emerging Professional

Xerxes L. Nabong*
Virginia Financial Planning is located at 4669 South Blvd., Suite 105, Virginia Beach. 757-394-3486 Ext. 302.
VaFinancialPlanning.com

 

Top CEO

Ben Young
As president and CEO of Hybrid Air Inc., Ben is committed to the quality and reliability of Trane products. He appreciates the stringent requirements Trane places on dealers for customer service and business practices. Starting in the field at the early age of 15, he opened his own business and later folded in his family’s business.
753 Voyager Court, Virginia Beach. 757-436-3749.
HybridAirUSA.com

 

Top Seasoned Pro

Veronica Thompson – VIBEvents Group
Veronica Thompson is president/CEO of VIBEvents Group, an award-winning event planning agency in Chesapeake. Her team develops event concepts and creates memorable experiences for corporate and special events. Events can be tailored for team building, branding or fundraising so customers receive the look and feel they desire.
1244 Executive Blvd., Ste. A-101, Chesapeake. 757-810-8371.
PlanMyVibe.com

 

Young Business Person of the Year

Xerxes L. Nabong*
Virginia Financial Planning is located at 4669 South Blvd., Suite 105, Virginia Beach. 757-394-3486 Ext. 302.
VaFinancialPlanning.com

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