Welcome to 2015 and the Year of the Goat! We hope the summer has been kind to you.
With great attractions to visit and events (sporting and cultural) to enjoy in the warmer months, it’s a wonderful time to be a tourist in Victoria.
As flagged in our December e-news, the first 80 days of 2015 is a celebration of some of Victoria’s most outstanding major events. One of the pillars of Victoria’s major events calendar – the Australian Open tennis grand-slam – is an obvious highlight, profiling our state to the world.
The tournament is memorable in many ways, but this year is particularly special with the upgraded Margaret Court Arena in action. In 2015, Tennis Australia has also offered ground pass ticket holders access to Hisense Arena, allowing tennis fans to enjoy the 10,000-seat indoor stadium.
Chinese New Year
Victoria is gearing up to showcase Chinese New Year festivities, planned for 19 February and beyond. Congratulations to Destination Melbourne for delivering a Chinese breakfast series and launching a new website, www.cnymelbourne.com.au, which details the range of exciting Chinese New Year activities on offer. These include the appearance of the 100-metre-long illuminated Docklands Dragon, which will light up every evening between 5:30pm – 9:30pm during the festival, with accompanying entertainment and merchant stalls. These new activities complement those already delivered in the Little Bourke Street Chinatown precinct – the traditional heart of Chinese culture in the CBD – and at Crown.
VTIC will share the details of our exciting plans for the year at the 2015 VTIC Program Launch, to be held at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre on 20 February. We look forward to seeing many of you there. If you’re unable to attend, we hope to see you at one of the several regional roadshow visits VTIC will be rolling out during the year.
Next Chapter, New Minister
VTIC Policy Manager Kristina Burke and I had an excellent initial briefing with Victoria’s new Minister for Tourism and Major Events, the Hon John Eren MP, this week. Our discussions covered a broad range of topics, including intrastate visitation, red tape and business costs, leveraging our major events calendar, proposed public holidays, tourism shopping reforms and fire messaging. VTIC looks forward to further positive and constructive engagement with the new State Government going forward.
As ever, in 2015 VTIC will continue to support Victorian tourism operators to be the best they can, providing leadership, advocacy and representation, business development services and networking opportunities.
Here’s to a great start to the New Year!