VisitScotland has awarded Skyeskyns the 5* Visitor Attraction grading. The grading report highlighted “exceptional customer service” awarding maximum marks for warm welcome, attitude and efficiency of staff. The report also commented on the “high quality, informative brochure” and “impressive, easy to navigate website”, both of which created an “excellent first impression” when visitors are making their plans. Skyeskyns is currently the only holder of this award on the island. Clive Hartwell, owner, said that he was delighted to have his committed team recognised in this way and felt that the decision to upgrade the premises two years ago had been fully justified. “We have always understood that visitors to Skye and Lochalsh expect the highest standards of customer care, good value and a memorable experience to take away with them,” he said. “With Skye now voted by travellers 8th in the top ten European island destinations, we must all work together to deliver this quality of experience and to meet visitor expectations. This is certainly one of the declared aims of the Skye and Lochalsh Tourist Forum. We hope our business will help in drawing visitors to the island, and in particular to the north-west and Waternish. This will benefit the whole island by encouraging visitors to stay here longer. Indeed, Waternish as a marketing group and other high-end businesses in the north-west are actively advertising the winter experience to extend the season.” Mr Hartwell added that, boosted by increasing website sales and a programme of national exhibitions throughout the year when the island is promoted as a quality destination, Skyeskyns’ staff are employed all year round. He emphasised that all visitors are welcomed to Skyeskyns whether they come from off the island or live here and many are surprised at the wide range of products now available. The latest member of the team has joined Skyeskyns as part of the HIE Talent Scotland graduate placement scheme which is designed to assist young graduates from Scottish universities in finding employment. Harriet Sutton, pictured here with the five star award, graduated from St Andrews university this year and is working on a management project whilst learning at first hand all aspects of running a small business. She joins a growing number of young people who are choosing to make their home on Skye.