Latest News

Back to Latest News back


Tourism Holdings secures 2018 New Zealand Supreme Tourism Award

Tourism Holdings secures 2018 New Zealand Supreme Tourism Award
September 7, 2018

Multinational recreational vehicle business Tourism Holdings Ltd has won the tourism industry’s highest accolade, the Air New Zealand Supreme Tourism Award.

The winners of the New Zealand Tourism Awards were announced at a gala dinner in Christchurch yesterday evening (Thursday 6th September), attended by more than 400 industry leaders and supporters.

THL, with annual global turnover of $426 million, also won the Auckland Airport Business Excellence Award – for businesses with than $6 million annual turnover.

The Awards judges said THLl is a global business that can hold its own on the world stage, an amazing success story and exemplar for New Zealand’s tourism industry.

Listed on the New Zealand stock exchange, THL looks after more than 200,000 customers a year, operating a global recreational vehicle fleet of more than 6000. Alongside its RV rental and sales operations, it also operates two additional tourism businesses in New Zealand - Discover Waitomo, including Waitomo Glowworm Caves; and Kiwi Experience, a bus network aimed at young backpackers.

As part of their Air New Zealand Supreme Award prize, THL receives a prize valued at over $20,000, including $10,000 international air travel and a full-page advertisement in Kia Ora magazine.

Air New Zealand Chief Executive Christopher Luxon says the airline is extremely proud to partner with the event once again and to sponsor the Tourism Awards’ Supreme Award for a fourth year.

Luxon advised “with tourism the country’s largest export earner, it’s fantastic to be able to celebrate businesses who are providing outstanding and memorable experiences to visitors to our country and also contributing to New Zealand’s reputation overseas.”

Tourism’s most prestigious individual honour, the Horwath HTL Sir Jack Newman Award, went to Kathy Guy, a tourism industry trail-blazer who rose through the ranks from waitress to become one of the first female hotel general managers in New Zealand, successfully leading the Chateau Tongariro Hotel and the Wairakei Resort Taupo.

Chris Roberts, Chief Exexcutive of Awards organiser Tourism Industry Aotearoa (TIA) said this year’s Awards were extremely competitive, a reflection of a thriving industry that is contributing $36 billion to the New Zealand economy and supporting almost 400,000 jobs in communities throughout the country.

Roberts stated “positively, several Award winners are from smaller communities, helping attract visitors to areas off the traditional tourist track. It’s also pleasing to see the focus our business winners are putting on environmental and host community sustainability, as well as financial performance.”

Roberts thanked the Awards Partners, Air New Zealand and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment for their generous support.

MBIE Chief Executive Carolyn Tremain says the Ministry’s tourism policy team works to support the industry to make the biggest contribution it can to New Zealand’s economic success, adding “we are really proud to sponsor the awards and celebrate the achievements of the industry.

“I congratulate all the winners and finalists on their innovative ideas and hard work.”

The New Zealand Tourism Awards 2018 winners:

Air New Zealand Supreme Tourism Award
Auckland Airport Business Excellence Award – more than $6 million annual turnover

Winner: Tourism Holdings Ltd (thl)

Horwath HTL Sir Jack Newman Outstanding Industry Leader Award
Winner: Kathy Guy

PATA New Zealand Trust Emerging Tourism Leader Award 
Winner: Luke Taylor, Go Orange, Queenstown

JLT & AIG Tourism Industry Champion Award 
Winner: Les Morgan, Sudima Hotels and Resorts

Westpac Business Excellence Award - Less than $6 million annual turnover
Winner: Owen River Lodge

Department of Conservation Environmental Tourism Award 
Winner: Kapiti Island Nature Tours

Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment Industry Alignment Award 
Winner: Hawke’s Bay Tourism

He Kai Kei Aku Ringa Māori Tourism Award
Winner: Whale Watch Kaikoura Ltd

The Great Journeys of New Zealand Tourism 2025 Enabler Award
Winner: Christchurch Airport

epay NZ Tourism Marketing Award
Winner: Air New Zealand

ServiceIQ Visitor Experience Award
Winner: GO Rentals

NZME People’s Choice Award
Winner: Forgotten World Adventures

For more information on the New Zealand Tourism Awards go to

Images: Members of the THL team with their Air New Zealand Supreme Tourism Award (top, courtesy of Waynne Williams) and one of THL's distinctive Britz recreational vehicles (below).

Related Articles

5th September 2018 - New Zealand’s Tourism Industry Association call for law change to permit shark cage diving

31st July 2018 - Damning review reveals failures of New Zealand’s International Visitor Survey

2nd July 2018 - Tourism businesses support new border tax

21st May 2018 - Entries open for 2018 New Zealand Tourism Awards

18th May 2018 - New Zealand budget provides $100 million for America’s Cup, cuts Tourism NZ funding

8th September 2017 - Supreme Tourism Award winner an entrepreneurial success story

21st August 2017 - International visitors to New Zealand spend $10.3 billion in year to June 2017

17th July 2017 - Skills shortage reaching crisis levels in New Zealand’s service industry

31st January 2017 - Tourism industry aims to maintain record growth

30th December 2016 - Social media targets young New Zealand campers

30th September 2016 - Rotorua Canopy Tours wins supreme Tourism Award

9th April 2013 - Safety guidelines developed for adventure activities

25th February 2008 - Tourism Holdings profits Rises

Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.


supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

SeatGeek Asia Pacific

SeatGeek is a search engine and mobile-focused ticket marketplace that allows fans to buy and sell tickets for live events. As of August 2018, SeatGeek has exited the Australian, New…

read more

Entertainment / Sport / Technology / Ticketing / Venues


State Wide Pool Services

Known as Hydrilla since September 2020 - see

read more




Quayclean are a national cleaning and waste services partner with proven results in the understanding and delivery of cleaning needs and challenges faced by facilities including; major venues and…

read more

Aquatics / Hospitality / Surfaces / Venues



About Priava's Technology -  Priava is a cloud-based and centralised venue and event management system aimed at venues of all sizes. With its familiar and easy-to-use web interface, the…

read more

Attractions / Billing / Entertainment / Events / Technology


TJS Services

TJS Services is a leading national facility services provider. We deliver quality cleaning, maintenance, construction and facility management services to over 1,500 sites Australia wide.  Our…

read more

Hospitality / Retail / Venues



We are the leading providers of kids fun multi-sports programs for Sport and Recreation Centres. Programs cover twelve common sports as well as Gross Motor Skill Development and suit children from as…

read more

Fitness / Play / Recreation / Sport / Wellness



Intelligenz provides Leisure Management Software for managing all your Program Registrations, Facility Bookings, Membership Sales and POS Transactions; including detailed Reporting, automated…

read more

Access / Billing / Finance / Marketing / Technology



Humanforce is a global provider of workforce management solutions for companies who need flexibility to manage complex workforces. Companies use Humanforce to manage everything from time and…

read more

Hospitality / Retail / Technology / Venues


get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business