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Hunter businesses shine at NSW Tourism Awards


Release Date: 18/11/2019
Four Hunter tourism operators won Gold awards and Nelson Bay’s Moonshadow – TQC Cruises was inducted into the prestigious NSW Tourism Awards Hall of Fame in a glittering night for the region at the annual state awards, held at Sydney’s Four Seasons Hotel.
 
Moonshadow – TQC Cruises for took out top honours in the Major Tour and/or Transport Operators category for the third year in a row, automatically qualifying for entry to the Hall of Fame.

Other Hunter winners were Port Stephens 4WD tours (Tour and/or Transport Operators), Margan Wines and Restaurant (Excellence in Food Tourism) and Macquarie 4 Star, Lake Macquarie (Standard Accommodation).
 
Sand Dune Adventures won Silver in the Adventure Tourism category, with Beyond Ballooning winning Bronze, while Oakvale Wildlife Park received a Silver award for Excellence in Accessible Tourism and Bronze in the Tourism Attractions category.
 
Other Silver awards went to Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley (Business Event Venues), Brokenwood Wines Cellar Door (Tourism Wineries, Distilleries and Breweries) and the Hunter Valley Wine and Tourism Association, which was honoured in the Destination Marketing category for its ‘Here’s to the Good Life’ campaign.
 
The 30th anniversary edition of the prestigious NSW Tourism Awards on Thursday 14 November saw 75 awards presented before an audience of nearly 500 industry representatives.
 
The awards recognise businesses that exemplify quality tourism and provide leadership in innovation, marketing and in the delivery of quality products and services. They are managed by the Tourism Industry Division of the NSW Business Chamber, the state’s peak business organisation, and supported by the NSW Government via its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW.
 
Guest speaker Stuart Ayres, the Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney, highlighted the importance of tourism and events to the state’s economy and congratulated the winners.
 
“Tourism is vital to our State’s economy, so to be recognised at the NSW Tourism Awards is a truly outstanding achievement. I thank all of the winners for their unwavering commitment to offering our domestic and international visitors Australia’s most remarkable experiences.
 
“Beyond our spectacular natural scenery and iconic capital city, the highlight for many visitors to NSW is the individuals who front these award-winning experiences, who exude contagious passion and excitement and ensure every trip to our State is simply unforgettable,” Mr Ayres said.
 
Gold Medal winners in most categories go on to represent NSW at the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards, to be held in Canberra in March 2020.
 
“This group of winners and finalists should be incredibly proud of this recognition,” NSW Business Chamber Chief Executive Officer Stephen Cartwright said.
 
“Award entrants continue to showcase a diverse array of talent, passion and innovative drive that allows our state’s tourism industry to thrive.
 
“Good luck to all winners continuing on to the QANTAS Australian Tourism Awards in March.”
 
2019 NSW TOURISM AWARDS WINNERS
 
MAJOR TOURIST ATTRACTIONS sponsored by Sydney Airport
Gold – The Australian Reptile Park, Somersby

TOURIST ATTRACTIONS sponsored by Destination NSW
Gold – Outback Astronomy, Broken Hill
Silver – Forestry Corporation of NSW: Sealy Lookout, Orara East State Forest, Coffs Harbour
Bronze – Oakvale Wildlife Park, Salt Ash

MAJOR FESTIVALS AND EVENTS sponsored by Sydney Airport
Gold - Destination NSW: Vivid Sydney 2019
Silver - Splendour in the Grass 2018, Byron Bay
Bronze - Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour 2019: West Side Story

FESTIVALS AND EVENTS sponsored by NSW Business Chamber
Gold - Grazing Down the Lachlan, Forbes
Silver - Deni Ute Muster, Deniliquin
Bronze - Lismore Lantern Parade

ECOTOURISM sponsored by Forestry Corporation of NSW
Gold - Go Sea Kayak Byron Bay
Silver – Sydney by Kayak, Lavender Bay
Bronze - Wolgan Valley Eco Tours

CULTURAL TOURISM sponsored by Sydney Airport
Gold - Hello Koalas Sculpture Trail, Port Macquarie
Silver – Nundle Woollen Mill
Bronze - Old Dubbo Gaol
Highly Commended - Q Station, Sydney Harbour National Park, Manly

QANTAS AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER TOURISM
Gold - The Giingan Experience by Bularri Muurlay Nyanggan Aboriginal Corporation, Coffs Harbour
Silver – Bundyi Cultural Tours, Wagga Wagga
Bronze - Wajaana Yaam Gumbaynggirr Adventure Tours, Coffs Harbour

SPECIALISED TOURISM SERVICES sponsored by NSW Business Chamber
Gold - Blue Ginger Picnics, Kingscliff
Silver – Birkenhead Point Brand Outlet, Sydney
Bronze - South Coast Nannies, Nowra

VISITOR INFORMATION SERVICES sponsored by Destination NSW
Gold – Mudgee Region Tourism: Visitor Information Services
Silver – Shoalhaven City Council: Visitor Services
Bronze - Warrumbungle National Park Visitor Centre
Highly Commended - Albury Visitor Information Centre

BUSINESS EVENT VENUES sponsored by Destination NSW
Gold – Fairmont Resort & Spa Blue Mountains, MGallery by Sofitel
Silver - Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley
Bronze - Elements of Byron, Byron Bay

MAJOR TOUR AND/OR TRANSPORT OPERATORS sponsored by NSW Business Chamber
Gold & Hall of Fame – Moonshadow - TQC Cruises, Nelson Bay
Silver – AAT Kings, Sydney

TOUR AND/OR TRANSPORT OPERATORS sponsored by Signature Media
Gold – Port Stephens 4WD Tours, Nelson Bay
Silver – Beyond Ballooning, Lovedale

ADVENTURE TOURISM sponsored by Forestry Corporation of NSW
Gold – Emu Trekkers, Sydney & Blue Mountains
Silver – Sand Dune Adventures, Williamtown
Bronze - Beyond Ballooning, Lovedale

DESTINATION MARKETING - sponsored by Tourism Australia
Gold – Orange360: Extend the Weekend campaign
Silver – Hunter Valley Wine & Tourism Association: Hunter Valley 'Here's to the Good Life' Campaign
Bronze - Clarence Valley Council: My Clarence Valley Tourism

TOURISM RESTAURANTS AND CATERING SERVICES sponsored by Sydney Weekender
Gold – The River Deck, South Albury
Silver – Bent on Food, Wingham
Bronze - Yots Café, Darling Harbour

TOURISM WINERIES, DISTILLERIES AND BREWERIES sponsored by Destination NSW
Gold – Heifer Station Wines, Orange
Silver – Brokenwood Wines Cellar Door, Pokolbin
Bronze - Tumut River Brewing Co

CARAVAN & HOLIDAY PARKS sponsored by Caravan & Camping Industry Association NSW
Gold – NRMA Port Macquarie Breakwall Holiday Park
Silver – Reflections Holiday Parks Seal Rocks
Bronze - Ingenia Holidays South West Rocks

Highly Commended - BIG4 Great Lakes at Forster-Tuncurry
HOSTED ACCOMMODATION sponsored by Business Energy Advice Program
Gold – Telegraph Retreat Cottages, Telegraph Point
Silver – Eldee Station, Silverton

UNIQUE ACCOMMODATION sponsored by Business Energy Advice Program
Gold – Sierra Escape, Mudgee
Silver – Q Station, Sydney Harbour National Park, Manly

SELF CONTAINED ACCOMMODATION sponsored by Business Energy Advice Program
Gold – Riverside Holiday Resort Urunga
Silver – Peppertree Hill Luxury Farm Cottages, Mudgee
Bronze - Macquarie Waters Boutique Apartment Hotel, Port Macquarie

STANDARD ACCOMMODATION sponsored by Business Energy Advice Program
Gold – Macquarie 4 Star, Lake Macquarie
Silver – Cadell on the Murray Motel Resort, Moama - Echuca
Bronze - Manera Heights Apartments, Dubbo

DELUXE ACCOMMODATION sponsored by Destination NSW
Gold – Fairmont Resort & Spa Blue Mountains, MGallery by Sofitel
Silver – Lake Crackenback Resort & Spa
Bronze - The Parkview Hotel Mudgee

LUXURY ACCOMMODATION sponsored by Business Energy Advice Program
Gold – Elements of Byron, Byron Bay
Silver – Mt Hay Retreat, Berry
Bronze – Dovecote, Gerringong

NEW TOURISM BUSINESS sponsored by NSW Business Chamber
Gold – Faraway Domes, Warialda
Silver – Table Under a Tree, Rosebank
Bronze - Bangalay Luxury Villas, Shoalhaven Heads

EXCELLENCE IN FOOD TOURISM sponsored by Sydney Weekender
Gold – Margan Wines & Restaurant, Broke
Silver – Cupitt's Winery, Brewery & Fromagerie, Ulladulla
Bronze - Food I Am, Wagga Wagga

DEAN GORDDARD AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTION BY AN INDIVIDUAL TO NSW sponsored by Qantas
Winner: Janette Hyde

EXCELLENCE IN ACCESSIBLE TOURISM sponsored by Tourism Australia
Gold – Riverside Holiday Resort Urunga
Silver – Oakvale Wildlife Park, Salt Ash
Bronze - Australia in Style, Randwick



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