08 Sep 2015

Hunter hosts peak industry conference this week, showcasing capacity of regions to host corporate events

[from Altogether Perfect]

A key conference in the Hunter this week organised by Australia’s peak business events body will help reinforce the capacity for regional areas to host major conventions, according to the Altogether Perfect marketing group which won the conference for Newcastle and the Hunter Valley.

The Association of Australian Convention Bureaux’s (AACB) 2015 Staff Conference will be held at venues in Newcastle and the Hunter Valley from Wednesday, September 9 to Friday, September 11, 2015. Welcoming delegates will be Newcastle Lord Mayor, Nuatali Nelmes, while Newcastle corporate trainer, Shivani Gupta, will share tips on how to build passionate business teams.  The heads of the Tourism and Transport Forum, Restaurant and Catering Australia and the Export Council of Australia will also address the forum. 

The conference will draw 75 delegates from around Australia according to Altogether Perfect which successfully pitched to host the event last year. Altogether Perfect is a collaboration between tourism bodies in Newcastle, the Hunter Valley and Port Stephens tasked to attract more convention business to the three neighbouring areas.

Altogether Perfect spokesperson, Georgia Lazzari – Business Events and Conventions Developer for the Newcastle Convention Bureau – said the AACB conference was a blue ribbon event for the Hunter.

“This conference draws together leaders from competing convention bureaux across Australia who will collaborate to both improve the performance of convention bureaux as well as celebrate the burgeoning business events industry,” Ms Lazzari said.

“The event also showcases the Hunter’s ability to host major business events and the scope for regional areas across the country to add more appeal, excitement and vitality to conventions like this,” she said. “Altogether Perfect is working proactively to draw more high-yielding conference business to Newcastle, the Hunter Valley and Port Stephens.”  

The AACB conference will be held at Crowne Plaza Newcastle, with a welcome event on September 9 at Newcastle’s historic Fort Scratchley overlooking the harbour and sea, workshops along the city’s Honeysuckle waterfront and a farewell gala dinner in The Barrel Room at the Tempest Two wine complex in the Hunter Valley on September 11.

AACB Executive Director, Andrew Hiebl, said two themes of this week’s conference were leadership and collaboration, qualities Altogether Perfect had shown in bringing three regions together to drawn and host conferences in the Hunter. “It’s true to say that big business and conference leaders often don’t have a full understanding of the unique elements regions can bring to the landscape of a major convention but after our conference in Newcastle and the Hunter Valley this week, our delegates will certainly know how the Hunter and regions generally can add to the success and enjoyment of events like this,” Mr Hiebl said.


* Launched in 2014, the ‘Altogether Perfect’ campaign is the name for the collaborative marketing efforts undertaken by regional partners in the Hunter Region to attract and secure business events tourism. Backed by Newcastle Convention Bureau, Hunter Valley Wine & Tourism Association and Destination Port Stephens and supported by dynamic industry operators, the joint marketing group attends trade fairs and sales missions and host visits to the region by key conference organisers and media to build the appeal of the Hunter region as THE number one business tourism destination.The campaign received funding through the Regional Visitor Economy Fund (RVEF) which is managed and administered by the NSW Government’s tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW.

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