Victoria’s events strategy of securing “the Best of the Best” has been well and truly demonstrated with a turning back of the clock at the Australian Open women’s and men’s finals, with the Williams sisters squaring off and Nadal vs Federer going head to head one more time. We have seen world-class riders like Chris Froome and Richie Porte take part in the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race, and are now looking forward to the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival set to commence tomorrow, and the Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix coming up at the end of March.
Victoria has also secured two mouth-watering soccer games in June, with Brazil playing Argentina, followed by the Socceroos taking on the might of Brazil on the hallowed turf of the G. It is testament to the strength of Victoria’s events strategy that Melbourne is currently the only city in the world to host both a tennis Grand Slam and a Formula 1 Grand Prix.
Victorian celebrations continue with the impressive results from last week’s QANTAS Australian Tourism Awards. On behalf of the VTIC Board and team, I would like to congratulate all of the Victorian finalists and winners who made the journey to Darwin. It was pleasing to see that a third of our winners were first time entrants, and the majority were from regional Victoria, demonstrating Victoria’s reputation for excellence in attractions and experiences across the state (read our media release).
On the advocacy front, VTIC has been very active in representing the industry’s interests in discussing the need for significant State Government investment in the tourism sector through the upcoming State Budget, to be released in May 2017 (view VTIC’s 2017-18 State Budget Submission).
A particular focus has been to advocate for significant investment in Visit Victoria, to ensure they are well positioned to market the state as a visitor destination and secure more world-class events. We are also seeking a significant re-investment in the Regional Tourism Infrastructure Fund and more funding for events. A positive hearing was held with Minister Eren, with further advocacy to occur with other senior Government ministers in the coming weeks.
I look forward to seeing as many of you as possible at the upcoming VTIC Visitor Economy Forum and Tourism Australia Industry Briefing, to be held on Monday 6 March 2017.