05 Feb 2016
Chief Minister of the Northern Territory, Minister for Tourism
It's been a golden night for the Northern Territory at the prestigious Qantas Australian Tourism Awards, with local tourism operators winning three gold medals at the gala event in Melbourne.
NT tourism businesses also picked up three silver and two bronze medals with Northern Territory tourism pioneer and last year's Tourism Minister's perpetual trophy winner, Geoff McGeary OAM, named an Australian Tourism Legend.
Chief Minister and Tourism Minister Adam Giles said picking up eight medals on Australian tourism's night of nights was a fantastic result for the Northern Territory.
"The Northern Territory's tourism industry continues to set the bar high when it comes to delivering world-class tourism experiences and tonight's awards prove that," he said.
"With our unique attractions and spectacular natural landmarks, a holiday in the Northern Territory really is a holiday like none other.
"The world is taking notice and we are seeing positive signs of more people choosing to visit the Northern Territory for a holiday, with a 14% increase in the total number of visitors to the NT in the three years to September 2015."
The three gold medal winners were Venture North for Best Cultural Tourism, Voyages Indigenous Tourism Australia for Best Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Tourism and the Alice Springs Visitor Information Centre for Best Visitor Information Services.
Mr Giles said it was the second time the family-run Venture North had won the award, cementing their place as the must-do cultural experience in Australia.
"It's great to see Venture North claim this award yet again. Specialising in taking guests 'off the beaten track' and into some of the most remote and pristine parts on the Northern Territory, they recently added a remote safari style camp on the Coburg Peninsula with the help of funding through the NT Government's Tourism Infrastructure Development Fund," he said.
"This has enhanced their visitor experience greatly with the national judges clearly sitting up and taking notice."
Mr Giles said the recognition for the Alice Springs Visitor Centre was huge and helped keep the town on the tourism map.
"The Centre was re-located to a prime location in the Todd Mall with the assistance of the NT Government in 2013 and the move has paid off with visitor numbers up," he said.
"The Alice Springs Visitor Centre was also the first Australian visitor centre to introduce a queueing system that also collates market research data.
"For Voyages, it was back to back gold, recognised for the second year straight for their unique and authentic Aboriginal visitor experiences for every taste and budget at the Ayers Rock Resort.
"I congratulate all of the winners who continue to inspire our industry and offer visitors an outstanding holiday they'll never forget."
Media Contact: Scott Whitby 0438 531 583
A full list of NT winners is attached.