Thanks to the support of Golden Eagle Distributors, 1,200 future hospitality managers have learned how to serve customers in one Arizona’s smallest liquor lounges.

Tucked away in The Inn at NAU, part of the School of Hotel and Restaurant Management at Northern Arizona University, the Golden Eagle Lounge was established nearly 20 years ago when NAU’s fledgling hospitality school became an independent program.

This elegant little gem that gleams of oak, brass, and copper-tone mirrors is just 13 by 16 feet with a seating capacity of eight to 10 guests. The intimate setting hasn’t stopped 20 years’ worth of Inn guests from sipping wine, enjoying a lager, or testing a young bartender’s knowledge of the latest cocktail.

The HRM school honored Golden Eagle Distributors Inc. and its owners, the Clements family of Tucson, for its continued friendship and support in a rededication ceremony yesterday at The Inn. Golden Eagle, which recently redesigned its logo, will update the Inn’s lounge with new signage.

“On behalf of my mother, sister and my late father, we are honored that NAU continues its tradition of excellence with the rededication of the Golden Eagle Lounge,” said Christopher Clements, CEO of Golden Eagle. “It’s always a source of pride for us when we visit the Inn at NAU to know that students and faculty are engaged in learning the proper service, rotation and execution of our products.”

Golden Eagle Distributors has been the exclusive distributor of Anheuser-Busch products across most of Arizona since its creation in 1974. The family-owned company is headquartered in Tucson with offices in Buckeye, Casa Grande, Flagstaff, Holbrook and Globe, Arizona.

Golden Eagle Distributors founder, the late Bill Clements, responded to the school’s original capital campaign with a $50,000 cash donation, which furnished and equipped the namesake Golden Eagle Lounge.

“It’s a great learning tool for our students,” says Julene Boger, general manager of The Inn. “Like the rest of our ‘learning laboratory’ here at The Inn, it gives students a chance to practice what they’ve learned in their classes, in a small but real environment.”

Golden Eagle has also been a friend to the HRM as a donor to scholarships, helping dozens of students over the years. Beyond its contributions to the HRM school, Golden Eagle has been a long-term sponsor and donor to Northern Arizona University, particularly to collegiate athletics.

The Inn at NAU is a 19-room hotel and “living laboratory” for the School of Hotel and Restaurant Management and is located on the NAU campus. Its services include lodging, dining at the Garden Terrace Restaurant, retreats and catered functions. For information, call (928) 523-1616 or click here.