LOVING tributes have been paid by the family, friends and colleagues of a much-loved former hotel and restaurant manager who died after a battle with illness.
Husband, father and popular hotel and restaurant manager Nick Rutigliano worked at the East Anglia Hotel in Bournemouth for 30 years and has been described as a man with a ‘certain spark’ who ‘loved his job and the people who surrounded him”.
Born in the beautiful southern region of Puglia, Italy, Nick was the eldest of twins and was later joined by his little sister.
At 16, Nick began his training in catering and left the comforts of home to work in hotels across Europe.
His long and illustrious career has taken him to some of the best hotels not only in Italy but also in France, Germany, Belgium and Switzerland – including the Hotel Normandy in Deauville, France.
After meeting in Bournemouth, Nick married his wife Sue in 1976 and the couple spent 46 happy years together.
A few years after their marriage the couple welcomed their beloved daughter Katrina, by which time Nick had started working at the East Anglia hotel where he remained for 30 years until it closed.
He then moved on to become restaurant manager at the Connaught Hotel for another 10 years before retiring shortly after the first lockdown in 2020.
Speaking to the Echo about her late husband, Sue Rutigliano said:
“Nick was a fantastic husband and a wonderful father, he had a close relationship with his daughter and we loved her very much.
“We also remain close to our Italian family, whether that means visiting them regularly in Italy or welcoming visitors to our home in England.”
Nick passed away peacefully in his sleep with his family by his side on Friday evening March 25.
‘Dazzled’ by the outpouring of love shared on social media since Nick’s passing, Sue said: ‘My daughter and I are devastated by our loss and miss him terribly but are grateful for all the messages and kind thoughts that people sent to Nick. Memory.”
Simon Hartwell, Managing Director of The Connaught, said: “Nicky was a consummate professional and had a certain sparkle that people no longer have in hospitality – he was warm and loved his job and the people around him.
“Nicky will be missed by many, but especially his beloved wife Sue, his adored daughter Katrina and of course his Connaught family.”