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Port Arthur Historic Site named top attraction 2019 Australian Tourism Awards

Port Arthur Historic Site named top attraction 2019 Australian Tourism Awards
March 6, 2020

The Port Arthur Historic Site in Tasmania was named the top Major Tourist Attraction while tourism pioneer advocate John Morse was named a Tourism Legend at tonight's presentation of the 2019 Qantas Australian Tourism Awards.

Presented at the National Convention Centre in Canberra after bad weather prevented the awards being presented at the Rond Terrace as originally scheduled, a total of 76 awards were handed out on the night, acknowledging the top tourism organisations across the country.

With Tasmania securing six Gold Awards, Tourism Industry Council Tasmania Chief Executive Luke Martin said it was an "exceptional result" for tourism in Australia's smallest state, commenting "this really shows Tassie's leading tourism operators really are among the very best in their field.”

Among other winners, the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre (GCCEC) was named the nation’s number one Business Event Venue beating out strong competition from venues including Adelaide Hills Convention Centre, National Convention Centre, DoubleTree by Hilton Esplanade in Darwin, Fairmont Resort and Spa Blue Mountains, Geelong Cats Higher Mark, Pullman Bunker Bay and The Old Woolstore Apartment Hotel.

Welcoming the recognition, GCCEC General Manager, Adrienne Readings stated "the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre attracts large business events that play a significant role in bringing visitors to the Gold Coast.

“The team at GCCEC delivers an exceptional experience, that translates to strong reputation, healthy occupancy and in turn, economic benefit for the region. I’m fortunate to work in an industry that I’m passionate about and can’t wait to share the award with the team at GCCEC.”

John Morse was named the Awards’ 2019 Tourism legend in recognition of his pivotal role in the growth of international tourism to Australia.

Morse was acknowledged as “one of a group of talented, creative and innovative industry leaders who, in the 20 years between 1980 and 2001’ overcame barriers and challenges and created new ways of marketing Australia in world tourism markets.

“His legacy includes the early development of the Chinese market to Australia, the ground-breaking strategy to leverage the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games to strengthen Australia’s tourism brand, and the development of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Tourism to create employment and keep culture strong.”

Now into their 36th year, the awards ceremony recognises the industry’s hallmarks of quality and excellence in tourism experiences across several categories, including cultural tourism, ecotourism, restaurants and wineries, accommodation and festivals.

Swan Valley Visitor Centre and Horizontal Falls Seaplane Adventures - The Horizontal Hotel were awarded the honour of being inducted into the Australian Tourism Awards Hall of Fame for taking the top honours for the past three years.

2019 Qantas Australian Tourism Awards winners:

Check out the full list of winners below:

Major Tourist Attractions
Gold: Port Arthur Historic Site, Tasmania
Silver: The Australian Reptile Park, NSW
Bronze: Nitmiluk National Park, Northern Territory

Tourist Attractions
Gold: Calypso Star Charters, South Australia
Silver: Horizontal Falls Seaplane Adventure, Western Australia
Bronze: Cobbold Gorge, Queensland

Major Festivals and Events
Gold: MyState Australian Wooden Boat Festival 2019, Tasmania
Silver: Tesselaar Tulip Festival, Victoria
Bronze: Rome City + Empire at the National Museum of Australia, ACT

Festivals and Events
Gold: Groundwater Country Music Festival, Queensland
Silver: The Unconformity, Tasmania
Bronze: Grazing Down the Lachlan, NSW

Gold: The Maria Island Walk, Tasmania
Silver: Lady Elliot Island Eco Resort, Queensland
Bronze: Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park, Victoria

Cultural Tourism
Gold: Venture North Australia, Northern Territory
Silver: Hadley’s Orient Hotel, Tasmania
Bronze: Royal Australian Mint, ACT

Qantas Award for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Tourism
Gold: Nitmiluk Tours and Cicada Lodge, Northern Territory
Silver: Go Cultural Aboriginal Tours and Experiences, Western Australia
Bronze: Rainforestation Nature Park - Pamagirri Aboriginal Experience, Queensland

Specialised Tourism Services
Gold: Blue Ginger Picnics, NSW
Silver: Launceston Airport, Tasmania
Bronze: Small World Journeys, Queensland

Visitor Information Services
Gold: Swan Valley Visitor Centre, Western Australia - Hall of Fame
Silver: Wonders of Wynyard Exhibition and Visitor Information Centre, Tasmania
Bronze: Canberra and Region Visitor Centre, ACT

Business Event Venues
Gold: Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre, Queensland
Silver: Adelaide Hill Convention Centre, South Australia
Bronze: Pullman Bunker Bay Resort Margaret River Region, Western Australia

Major Tour and Transport Operators
Gold: Red Cat Adventures, Queensland
Silver: SkyBus, Victoria
Bronze: Pennicott Wilderness Journeys, Tasmania

Tour and Transport Operators
Gold: Kimberley Quest, Western Australia
Silver: Gordon River Cruises, Tasmania
Bronze: Tasman Venture, Queensland

Adventure Tourism
Gold: Roaring 40s Kayaking, Tasmania
Silver: Red Cat Adventures, Queensland
Bronze: Adventure Bay Charters, South Australia

Destination Marketing
Gold: Bendigo Tourism Tudors to Windsors campaign, Victoria
Silver: Orange360 - Extend the Weekend campaign, NSW
Bronze: Mona Foma - Air Mofo, Tasmania

Tourism Restaurants and Catering Services
Gold: Nitmiluk’s Cicada Lodge Restaurant, Northern Territory
Silver: The Tasting Room at Mayura Station, South Australia
Bronze: The River Deck, NSW

Tourism Wineries, Distilleries and Breweries
Gold: Bundaberg Rum Visitor Experience, Queensland
Silver: Bangor Vineyard Shed, Tasmania
Bronze: Bright Brewery, Victoria

Caravan and Holiday Parks
Gold: BIG4 Hahndorf Resort, South Australia
Silver: Ingenia Holidays Cairns Coconut, Queensland
Bronze: NRMA Port Macquarie Breakwall Holiday Park, NSW

Hosted Accommodation
Gold: Ashdowns of Dover Bed and Breakfast, Tasmania
Silver: Heytesbury House, Victoria
Bronze: Holberry House, Western Australia

Unique Accommodation
Gold: Horizontal Falls Seaplane Adventure - The Horizontal Hotel, Western Australia - Hall of Fame
Silver: Sierra Escape, NSW
Bronze: Jamala Wildlife Lodge, ACT

Self-Contained Accommodation
Gold: Balingup Heights Hilltop Forest Cottages, Western Australia
Silver: Lakeside Villas at Crittenden Estate, Victoria
Bronze: Avalon Coastal Retreat, Tasmania

Standard Accommodation
Gold: IBIS Styles Hobart, Tasmania
Silver: Leumeah Lodge, ACT
Bronze: Grand Hotel and Apartments Townsville, Queensland

Deluxe Accommodation
Gold: MACq 01 Hotel, Tasmania
Silver: Fairmont Resort & Spa Blue Mountains, NSW
Bronze: Crowne Plaza Alice Springs Lasseters, Northern Territory

Luxury Accommodation
Gold: Cicada Lodge at Nitmiluk Gorge, Northern Territory
Silver: Pullman Bunker Bay Resort Margaret River Region, Western Australia
Bronze: Alkina Lodge, Victoria

New Tourism Business
Gold: Habitat Noosa, Queensland
Silver: Stillwater SEVEN - Stillwater Restaurant and Seven Room, Tasmania
Bronze: Seppeltsfield Road Distillers, South Australia

Excellence in Food Tourism
Gold: Two Feet & a Heartbeat, Western Australia
Silver: Sarina Sugar Shed, Queensland
Bronze: Margan Wines & Restaurant, NSW

Australian Tourism Legend
John Morse AM

Images: Port Arthur Historic Site (top), Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre (middle) and Nitmiluk Tours at Katherine Gorge (below).

Related Articles

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2nd March 2020 - ATEC remembers tourism innovator James Kwan

9th February 2020 - Works commence on Nitmiluk mountain biking and adventure tourism projects

3rd February 2020 - Voyages Indigenous Tourism Australia Chief Executive acknowledged in Australia Day Honours

30th January 2020 - Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre updates all radio microphone and RF management equipment

23rd January 2020 - Tourism Australia launches $20 million campaign to support bushfire affected industry

25th November 2019 - Bendigo NEXT tourism conference to return in 2020

30th October 2019 - Tourism Australia launches new campaign ‘Come Live our Philausophy’

13th September 2019 - Tourism Australia confirms Phillipa Harrison as new Managing Director

3rd March 2019 - Prominence of Quality Tourism Accredited Businesses at the 2018 Australian Tourism Awards

2nd March 2019 - Irwins named industry legends at Tasmania-hosted Australian Tourism Awards as Labor’s Albanese pledges Quality Tourism Framework funding

22nd January 2019 - Australia’s cultural attractions combine to launch new Global Tourism Initiative

24th February 2018 - Tourism’s high achievers recognised at 2017 Qantas Australian Tourism Awards

9th June 2017 - Western Australian Government looks to expand Swan Valley tourism

12th April 2016 - Port Arthur Historic Site to get Federal funds for tourism centre development

21st January 2016 - Comments close on Horizontal Falls marine park plan proposal

4th July 2013 - AHL Group backs Indigenous tourism vision

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