Rockhampton glimmers gold at 2023 Queensland Tourism Awards

Queensland Tourism Awards - Gold Winners - Explore Rockhampton.jpg

The Rockhampton region radiated at the 2023 Queensland Tourism Awards on Friday evening, taking home a total of four awards.

Hosted by the Queensland Tourism Industry Council (QTIC), the Queensland Tourism Awards recognise the exceptional effort and commitment of the state’s tourism industry and aims to reward excellence for best practice within the tourism sector. Explore Rockhampton, Rare Spares Rockynats and Empire Apartment Hotel were amongst the winners announced at the prestigious black-tie event.

Nominated by Advance Rockhampton, Rockhampton Regional Council’s Tourism, Industry Development, Marketing and Major Events team, Explore Rockhampton was awarded GOLD in the ‘Richard Power Award for Tourism Marketing and Campaigns’ category. A collaboration with the team from Live To Create, the ‘Ultimate Mates Trip’ campaign highlighted the best of the Beef, Barra and Burnout Capital of Australia, contributing to inspiring 580,000 people to visit the Rockhampton region in the last 12 months.

Also nominated by Advance Rockhampton, Rare Spares Rockynats took out BRONZE in the ‘Major Festivals and Events’ category. Attracting over 56,000 attendees in 2023, this three-day event held annually across Easter weekend is Queensland’s biggest car festival, generating $6.18 million in expenditure to the Rockhampton region.

Empire Apartment Hotel also took home two awards, winning SILVER in the ‘Business Event Venues’ category, and SILVER in ‘4-4.5 Star Deluxe Accommodation’ category.

Rockhampton Region Mayor Tony Williams said the awards solidify Rockhampton’s position as a beacon of excellence within the Queensland tourism arena.

“Being recognised in the Queensland Tourism Awards places Rockhampton amongst some of the state’s best tourism and event destinations, promoting Rockhampton not only as a holiday destination of choice, but as an events epicentre,” Mayor Williams said.

“Queensland’s National Visitor Survey showed the Rockhampton region thrived from a tourism perspective during the last financial year, with Explore Rockhampton’s destination marketing campaigns contributing to the 12% growth in visitation to the Southern Great Barrier Reef region.”

Advance Rockhampton Tourism and Events Manager Zac Garven said these awards will help to push Rockhampton’s profile as a leading tourism and events destination.

“This recognition proves our region offers a multitude of reasons to visit – where else in Queensland can you attend nationally recognised events, stay in award winning accommodation and explore a region brimming with unique tourism experiences like world-class mountain biking trails, trophy barramundi fishing and adventure caving?” Mr Garven said.

“Being named a Queensland Tourism award recipient is testament to the hard work, passion and collaboration of our local tourism operators, businesses and the Advance Rockhampton team. It reaffirms our commitment to providing exceptional visitor experiences and showcasing the unique essence of the Rockhampton region.

“It was also a celebrated night for the wider Central Queensland region with Great Keppel Island Hideaway being awarded silver in the ‘3-3.5 Star Accommodation’ category, another incredible acknowledgement of our region’s diverse offering.”

Tourism Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said the Queensland Tourism Awards celebrated another extraordinary year of accomplishments.

“Congratulations to award winners and finalists for creating world-class visitor experiences and helping to make 2023 an extraordinary year for Queensland tourism,” Mr Hinchliffe said.

“Queensland’s place as the nation’s favourite holiday destination and record $33.2 billion visitor economy are a credit to the ingenuity and commitment of the State’s tourism operators.

“Our gold award winners are on track to put Queensland in an unbeatable position for national recognition at the Australian Tourism Awards in March.”

As a gold award winner, Explore Rockhampton will now have the opportunity to represent Queensland at the Australian Tourism Awards which will be held in the Northern Territory in March 2024.

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