HOST CITY Sydney designed an itinerary that highlighted its harbour, featured a disco lunch at a racecourse events space, an open-air opera, gardens and much more for 50 influential buyers and media taking part in the Business Events Australia Asia Mega Famil Showcase this week.
The event saw the return of Chinese buyers in force to Australia following the lifting of Covid restrictions, and comes amid the securing of several mega-incentive groups from the likes of Amway and Nu Skin, with convention bureaus in Australia expecting more.
Business Events Sydney (BESydney) and its industry partners welcomed delegates from Greater China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia and Singapore who toured Sydney for three days before buyers toured other cities.
The official welcome dinner was held aboard The Jackson, Sydney’s newest luxury yacht venue, The Art Gallery of NSW showed off its recently opened North Building wing venues and Royal Randwick Racecourse did the same for the new flexible entertainment and hosting spaces at the WINX Stand, while the Handa Opera’s Madama Butterfly on the harbour concluded the Sydney experience in grand style.
The 12-person Indian delegation was also treated to a regional tour exploring Port Stephens and the Hunter Valley. The return to Sydney saw the group visiting the hallowed turf of Sydney Cricket Ground, the site of many legendary clashes between our two countries, with a private tour and meet and greet with Australian one-day cricket legend, Michael Bevan, before upping the adrenalin with a Harley Davidson ride to Bondi.
BESydney chief executive, Lyn Lewis-Smith, said: “The showcase partnership with Business Events Australia has been the perfect opportunity to provide a taster of the breadth and depth of new product across our changing city and regional areas nearby.
“Sydney offers such a unique and seamless blend of ancient indigenous history, modern culture, rich nature, luxurious experiences and big city vibes. Sydney Harbour provides one of the most stunning backdrops in the world, a stage like no other for our global corporate and incentive clients to motivate and inspire delegates from the minute they arrive to the time we say farewell ‘til next time.”
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Katherine Tam, an international Planner from China CYTS MICE Service Co, said: “Sydney is fully open and more active than before. It’s great to see the potential of a booming business and incentive event market in Sydney. There are new attractions providing new facilities and services and Sydney provides unique seafoods and wines. It [Sydney] has always held a special place in our heart because of its liveliness”.
Another planner, Sajin Nawshad, from India, said: “I would recommend the countryside of NSW if we had our guests coming into Sydney for a trip extension. It was pristine and the experiences are outstanding, the hospitality was just brilliant.
‘We will definitely add our experiences to our [client’s] itineraries and promote with corporate and FITs,” said Nawshad, who is a director at Akbar Holidays.
Tourism Australia’s executive general manager of commercial and Business Events Australia, Robin Mack said: “BESydney has really seized the opportunity as host city partner of the Business Events Australia Asia Mega Famil Showcase to deliver a diverse and memorable program for our international guests, shining the light on what this amazing harbour side city has to offer for business events.
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“The purpose of the Showcase was to provide international planners from the Asia region with confidence to pitch Australia for their next business event, and based on the feedback I’ve heard so far, we have delivered on this. Already the Showcase has generated business leads for Australia, highlighting the real tangible results of our distribution activity.”
Main picture: The group gathers at the WINX Event Space at Royal Randwick Racecourse, Sydney