A SMALL Torquay guest house is the national winner of the prestigious Les Routiers guest house of the year award.
The five-bedroom Villa Marina Guest House in Tor Park Road, run by husband and wife team Vivienne and Peter Fisher, is the only establishment in the West Country to feature in the 2013 awards list.
Vivienne said: "It makes us feel very special because Les Routiers is an international organisation.
"Les Routiers is mostly about the food and we were told that we had won because of the quality of the food that we provide, the local produce, the presentation and the variety on our menu.
"They also look at the premises and the fact that we go that extra mile to try to help our guests have a good holiday.
"When you have worked hard and you come to the end of the season, it is nice to get a big pat on the back like this."
Since its inception in Paris in 1935, Les Routiers and its famous emblem have identified traditional hotels, guest houses, restaurants, bars, bistros and cafes throughout the UK, Ireland and Europe.
Les Routiers say they look for a 'certain quirkiness, excellent cuisine, warm hospitality and value for money'.
Villa Marina was also one of the South Devon businesses celebrating its success after being named among the best in the South West in this year's regional tourism awards.
The English Riviera won two silvers and a bronze in the South West Tourism Excellence Awards at the Eden Project in Cornwall.
The English Riviera Tourism Company's Agatha Christie Festival won silver in the tourism event of the year category and The Somerville, Torquay, won silver in the B&B and guest accommodation of the year category.
Claire Preece, of Kents Cavern, won bronze in the outstanding customer service awards.
Highly commended for large hotel of the year was the Lincombe Hall Hotel, Torquay. Villa Marina was highly commended in the B&B and guest accommodation of the year.
Chris Hart, chairman of the English Riviera Tourism Company, said: "We are really proud of our achievements as 'Team English Riviera' and warmly congratulate all the winners."
Award winners included a silver for Riverford Field Kitchen at Staverton in the taste of the South West awards, silver for River Dart Adventures at Ashburton in the small visitor attraction of the year and bronze for Cofton Country Holidays at Dawlish in the holiday park and village of the year section.