Sydney has farewelled 34 international event buyers and five media at a stunning gala dinner at Government House and celebrated New South Wales’ status as Australia’s number one destination for international visitors.
Speaking at the Dreamtime 2013 dinner on Friday last week, NSW Minister for Tourism, George Souris, said that the state continued to lead the nation in the number of international visitors and visitor nights according to the International Visitor Surveys to year end September 2013.
“This is a great result for NSW – half of all international business visitors visited NSW and spent a third of their nights in the state. We’re also pleased to see that for the second successive quarter, China tops the list of international tourists to our state.
“Sydney is renowned for its destination appeal and its ability to inspire, motive and reward. I’m told that a recent Chinese corporate client reported a 20% increase in sales activity and qualifying staff after announcing that Sydney would be their next incentive destination. Results like these speak for themselves.”
NSW continues to strengthen its relationship with the Asian markets and is seeing the business results of this grow year on year. In the last three years, 85 events from Asia have been held in NSW, contributing an estimated $186 million to the economy.
To date this calendar year, BESydney has secured 28 Asian incentive events, worth almost $64 million. This includes the recently announced Pro-Health China Annual Conference in 2014, which is estimated to be worth approximately $22.5 million and will bring around 4,500 delegates to the city.
A steady calendar of activities including trade missions and familiarisations (famils) ensures that the market is kept up to date. Taking place in Sydney from 10 – 13 December, Dreamtime deepened the Asian delegates’ knowledge of Sydney and broadened the ideas that they can pass on to their clients.
Lyn Lewis-Smith, CEO of Business Events Sydney (BESydney) said, “For Dreamtime, we wanted to share things that are not necessarily in the event or tourism guides: we wanted to share our local experiences and Sydney secrets. And the feedback we’ve had from our guests is extremely positive.”
The bespoke itinerary included a visit to Icebergs at Bondi Beach where leading creative identity, Ignatius Jones, shared his thoughts on Vivid Sydney and how NSW major events can provide authentic anchor points for international corporate incentives.
The group also visited one of Sydney’s newest event spaces, Royal Randwick Racecourse; lunched at The Grounds of Alexandria, where celebrity chef Kylie Kwong cooked up a storm of sustainable food with an Indigenous twist; and dropped in on the Sydney Dance Company rehearsing at Walsh Bay.
Shopping was also high on the agenda and Westfield Sydney provided exclusive access and a VIP tour to kick off the spending spree! Splitting up for the final afternoon, the group had the choice of three activity streams:
- Iconic Sydney: sailing on the harbour, BridgeClimb, and a tour of the city on a Harley Davidson
- Adventure Sydney: horse riding, quad biking, kayaking and a sizzling Aussie BBQ lunch at Glenworth Valley, and an amazing helicopter flight
- Naturally Sydney: a relaxed hop on/hop off Harbour cruise, a hike along the beautiful North Head, lunch at Q Station at Manly, and a Wild Life and Sea Life experience.
Held every two years, Dreamtime is Tourism Australia’s signature event for showcasing the destination’s outstanding incentive experiences to international business events buyers and media.