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The rest of Australia’s best business events venues revealed

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The final four states and territories have had their regional tourism awards. Here are the business events winners.

In Tasmania, the Peppers Silo Hotel in Launceston won gold. The hotel offers 108 rooms and conference and events space for 10 to 120 delegates.

In Queensland, Sofitel Brisbane Central took home gold, while the Empire Apartment Hotel Conference Centre in Rockhampton took silver and Mackay Entertainment and Convention Centre (MECC) won bronze.

The 416-key Sofitel in Brisbane, which has 37 suites, currently has the largest hotel meeting space footprint in Brisbane, with 11 rooms able to accommodate events of up to 1,100 people. The hotel’s Ballroom Le Grand, with 6.5m ceilings can host up to 1,056 delegates in theatre.

The 120-key Empire Apartment Hotel in Rockhampton opened in 2015 and is the newest and largest property of its kind in the regional Queensland town. The conference centre has one meeting space that can host up to 120 stand up and can be split into two spaces.

The MECC is the largest conference venue between Cairns and Brisbane, able to host up to 1,378 in theatre in its plenary halls and 1,090 in theatre in the venue’s auditorium. In all the venue has more than 12 spaces that can be used for conferences, exhibitions and other events.

Mackay’s major Greg Williamson called MECC’s recognition “an incredible accomplishment”.

“To be considered with the many other tremendous business event venues in Queensland, and to come away with the third place, speaks volumes for the efforts and dedication of the more than 70 MECC staff and 170 volunteers,” he said

“They truly go above and beyond.”

micenet recently caught up with the manager of MECC, Andrew Bobeldyk, who gave us a fascinating insight into the centre. Read Bobeldyk’s take on his venue.

In Victoria, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC) took out the ultimate gold for the state’s best business events venue, with MCG Events scoring the silver and the Geelong Cats Higher Mark venue at GMHBA Stadium in Kardinia Park in Geelong awarded the bronze.

After its expansion opened in 2018, MCEC is Australia’s largest convention centre, offering 76,000m2 of event space.

“MCEC’s ambition is to be the best, to lead and to bring real value to our customers and community. This award recognises our work and confirms our reputation as a leader in Australia’s event sector,” said MCEC’s chief executive, Natalie O’Brien AM.

In the last financial year, the centre welcomed 2.6 million visitors and generated an economic impact for Melbourne of $805 million.

“While successfully delivering a diverse range of events, MCEC also built on our commitments to sustainability and community,” said O’Brien. “We moved closer to our goal of eliminating single-use plastic, saving more than 1.3 million disposable cups from landfill, and improving disposal of organic waste.

“We grew our community partnerships program to make a total in-kind contribution of $2.2 million to leading Australian charities who share our values of sustainability, inclusivity and unconventional thinking.”

MCG Events – operated by Delaware North Australia – operates the more than 20 event spaces available at Australia’s largest stadium. From seated events for 550 in the Members Dining Room to cocktails for 120 or dinners of 60 in the Players’ Changerooms, MCG Events looks to make the most of the variety of history-steeped spaces which can be event spaces at the venue. Troy Stasinowsky, director of sales and marketing for MCG Events, gave micenet an exclusive glimpse at the business events possibilities at the MCG earlier this year. Read Stasinowsky’s perspective.

Recognised with bronze in Victoria, Higher Mark offers 32 event spaces for up to 2,450 delegates in Geelong.

There was no winner in the business events venue category in the Canberra Region Tourism Awards.

See the business events winners for New South Wales, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and South Australia.

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