The News of the World celebrated a hattrick of London Press Club Awards on Tuesday as editor Andy Coulson collected the Sunday newspaper of the year trophy for the third year running.
It was the paper the judges felt they would least like to be without, and was described as "an incredible sledgehammer of a production".
The Guardian did the double by winning daily newspaper of the year to go with the British Press Awards newspaper of the year trophy it picked up in March.
Donald Trelford, who compered the British Gas-sponsored event at Claridges, said the judges had found picking a winner difficult.
"In fact they simply couldn't agree, and had to return to the debate after a good lunch," he said.
In the end, The Guardian won after managing the transition to its new format "with enormous panache, producing a sharp, literate, quirky and reader-friendly" paper with an online version deemed "streets ahead of its rivals".
The Daily Mail's Ian Wooldridge won the prestigious Edgar Wallace award for fine writing.
The judges said they "simply wanted to honour the best of the best. His wise and witty columns convey much more than sporting expertise. They show a man of warm heart and stubborn principles".
Robert Jobson's "Camilla and Charles to Wed" splash for the Evening Standard won him scoop of the year, described as a "real jaw dropper".
Other winners were broadcaster of the year Caroline Hawley from the BBC; business journalist of the year Bill Emott, the former editor of The Economist; and consumer journalist of the year Jonathan Prynn of the Evening Standard.
The London Press Club Awards are judged by a panel chaired by Philippa Kennedy, comprising Robin Esser (executive managing editor of the Daily Mail), Bill Hagerty (editor of the British Journalism Review), Richard Lindley (television journalist and author), Bob Satchwell (executive director of the Society of Editors), Jean Morgan (former chief reporter of Press Gazette), Donald Trelford (former Observer editor), Mish Tullar (head of communications for British Gas) and George Westropp (former chairman of the London Press Club).