Regional New South Wales is being recognised as one of the major contributors to Sydney’s growing success in hosting the Asian MICE industry.
In a recent interview with micenet AUSTRALIA, Business Events Sydney’s CEO Lyn Lewis-Smith said New South Wales’ regional venues and attractions were a major contributor to the increase in Asian events being hosted in Sydney, especially on return business.
“Our clients tell us that much of the repeat business that we have secured from Asia is due to the diverse range of touring options that are available and the exceptional event delivery,” Ms Lewis-Smith told micenet.
“Regional highlights such as Wollongong, the Blue Mountains and the Hunter Valley continue to complement Sydney’s destination appeal, offering unique Australian experiences to first-time and repeat visitors,” she said.
She said the bureau has seen seven incentive clients from the Asian region return at least once to Sydney and regional New South Wales wanting to explore more of what they first experienced.
“Whether it’s wine tasting in the Hunter Valley, whale watching in Jervis Bay or exploring the lush rainforests of the South Coast, the regions have played a large role in reward programs and client loyalty. LG’s annual incentive program from Korea, for example, is returning to our city for the third time this year.”
Almost half of international business arrivals to Australia come to New South Wales. The array of landscapes and experiences the state hosts continues to support not only Sydney as a premier business events destination but regional NSW as a premier destination itself.
“Many national conferences are literally getting out of town and benefitting from the unique activities and specialised knowledge hubs in regional NSW locations,” Ms Lewis-Smith said.
Many venues both nearby and further from Sydney’s CBD have been working to ensure they offer the same standards as the city.
As the Asian market continues to grow, the role of regional New South Wales venues and experiences will continue to become a more integral reason to Sydney’s ongoing success.
Lake Crackenback Resort & Spa, Thredbo Valley
Possibly the most activity-abundant destination in the state, Lake Crackenback is a natural playground. Its rolling mountains beg for day hikes, biking trips and picnics; the lake calls for trout fishing, swimming and canoeing; and the golf course is perfect for long leisurely games. It has more than 100 rooms ranging from overwater lake-view apartments to mountain-view chalets, and is only 15 minutes from the ski-fields of Thredbo, or a 15 minute ski tube ride from Perisher Ski Resort. When business time rolls around, the Novotel resort has two conference rooms that can cater for anything from seminars to banquets, while smaller meetings can be hosted in the intimate four-and-a-half star Mountain View Chalets. Lake Crackenback has a diverse array of accommodation with apartments of one to three bedrooms, mountain view studios and chalets. It has also upgraded its conference rooms. The new-look Alpine and Brumby rooms have been decorated in a Snowy Mountain style with new carpet, paint and décor. The conference facilities have also received a technological upgrade and feature new projectors, mobile phone charging stations and wi-fi. While the conference rooms provide a good base for groups, it’s the team-building activities that Lake Crackenback Resort & Spa is known for. In addition to traditional team-building exercises, the resort offers activities like raft building, crack of dawn guided resort walks, spotlight walks, fly fishing, mountain bike challenges, segway tours and river rafting experiences.
Grand Mercure Apartments, Cypress Lakes Resort, Hunter Valley
Stretching luxuriously across 138 hectares of Hunter Valley wine country, Grand Mercure Apartments, Cypress Lakes Resort offers a wide variety of versatile conference and leisure facilities. The largest first-class resort in the region, it is capable of hosting 1000 delegates and boasts 200 villas with one, two and three bedrooms, an 18-hole championship golf course, Bodega Restaurant & Bar, plus the famous Golden Door Day Spa at Elysia. Its 15 purpose-built conference rooms include the event centre with a capacity of 620, the divisible convention centre catering for up to 500 and a beautiful outdoor marquee overlooking the lagoon pool hosting up to 1000 for cocktails, along with smaller meeting rooms. Grand Mercure Apartments Cypress Lakes Resort has also become a premier golfing destination as it hosts events such as the Jack Newton Celebrity Classic and Palsy Alliance CBD Golf Escape. Bodega Restaurant overlooking the lakes has also become another main attraction with well-respected executive chef Adam Bartley joining the kitchen.
Emirates Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa, Greater Blue Mountains
Emirates Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa sits amid the stunning scenery of the rugged Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. The resort is built around a fully-restored homestead and nestled within its own private nature reserve. It has set a new benchmark in Australia for delivering luxury accommodation and experiences, and is Australia’s most environmentally responsible tourist destination. That award is entirely appropriate when you learn that in 1836 the property actually hosted the world’s most famous naturalist, and unquestionably one of the greatest scientists of all time, Charles Darwin.
Darwin visited Australia in early 1836 towards the end of his famous voyage aboard the HMS Beagle. During his trip he crossed the Blue Mountains, gathering plant and animal specimens that helped shape his theory of evolution by natural selection. Wolgan Valley has close connections with Charles Darwin’s grandson, Chris Darwin, who lives with his family in the Blue Mountains working as a rock climbing guide. Chris often presents to Wolgan Valley conference guests about his famous relative and what it’s like to live in Darwin’s shadow. He can also talk about his own contribution to the preservation of Australia’s unique flora and fauna after purchasing 686 square kilometres of land to establish the Charles Darwin Reserve using the money he inherited from Darwin.
42 Bannerman Trattoria e Bar, Glenhaven
42 Bannerman Trattoria e Bar is a unique space an hour northwest of Sydney now available for corporate conferences, events and team-building. Set in a rustic, charming double-storey house overlooking the Bannerman Valley in Glenhaven, and set among five acres of lush green bushland, it offers an Italian experience like no other. With space that caters for up to 120 guests for a sit down meal or 200 guests for a cocktail event or product launch, delegates and guests are treated to a warm and homely welcome from the Mammoliti family. Day conferences are catered for in the dining room for up to 40 guests or the kitchen dining room for up to 80 guests. Owner and executive chef Sam Mammoliti invites delegates into the restaurant kitchen to follow recipes that have been handed down through the generations. Team-building cooking classes can be booked as an inclusion in a day conference package or simply enjoyed as an afternoon with the team cooking up an Italian storm.
Peppers Manor House, Southern Highlands
Set among the beautiful New South Wales Southern Highlands, Peppers Manor House is a charming retreat that combines an Australian country house experience with deluxe accommodation and modern business facilities making it an ideal conference destination. An easy hour-and-a-half drive from Sydney and less than two hours from Canberra, Peppers Manor House is suited to small and medium conferences and meetings.
Enjoy the total experience of work and play at Cypress Lakes Resort
Set across 340 acres in the heart of the Wine Country, Grand Mercure Apartments, Cypress Lakes Resort is the premier regional conference, incentive and event destination, offering the Hunters widest variety of versatile conference, function, meeting and exhibition rooms, to accommodate substantial numbers of delegates and different size events with comfort and ease. Surrounded by the beauty of native Australian bushland and mature manicured gardens, Cypress Lakes features 200 villas with private balconies, an award winning spa, championship golf course, onsite restaurant and bar, and all the facilities you would expect to find at any superior resort.
Cypress Lakes Resort is a destination in itself, with plenty of activities located on-site! Strike the perfect balance of work and play, choose from a variety of options already available or tailor-make your itinerary with something special, to offer your visiting delegates the ultimate experience in the lead up, during and after your event.
Our event management team takes care of all the details so you can stay focused on the bigger picture. You will have a dedicated coordinator working with you each step of the way, with a wealth of local knowledge and industry contacts to ensure your event is a resounding success.