Australia and New Zealand Event News – April 2018


Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre expansion

The $205 million expansion of the Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre (MCEC) is on track to open in mid-2018, with construction underway and on schedule. The expansion project will add close to 20,000m2 of event space, including 9,000m2 of new exhibition halls, meeting rooms and banquet rooms. The upgrade will cater for increased demand for meeting and event spaces in Australia and is expected to bring an additional 74,000 international visitors to Melbourne annually.


The Great Lawn openingThe Great Lawn opening

Corporate conferencing just got a whole lot more exciting with Crown Perth’s newly opened ‘The Great Lawn’ event space. The versatile outdoor setting covers 1,800m2 of pool-side event space, featuring stunning views of the Swan River and Perth City. Combined with Crown Perth’s resort offering, the space can cater for up to 3,500 delegates.


Australia set for a good yearAustralia set for a good year

The Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia (EEAA) has announced Australia’s inclusion in the 20th Global Exhibition Barometer by the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry (UFI). Out of the business event markets surveyed, Australia was one of the most optimistic markets with over 40% of event companies expected to see growth.


NSW bid for ‘the big‘NSW bid for ‘the big 5’

In a bid to win ‘the big 5’ global sporting events, Destination NSW hopes to establish a NSW Global Events Taskforce. The taskforce will ensure Sydney is internationally competitive in attracting events such as the Women’s Rugby WC in 2021, FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2023, Men’s RWC in 2027, the Commonwealth Games in 2026 or 2030 and the FIFA Men’s World Cup in 2030.


Novotel Surfers Paradise refurbNovotel Surfers Paradise refurb

The Novotel Surfers Paradise received a multi-million-dollar refurbishment for the Commonwealth Games. They now offer six conference rooms including the Grand Ballroom which can cater for up to 500 delegates at once. The space now features natural light and removable walls.


Le-Meridien-HotelMarriott International re-launches The Le Meridien Hotel in Australia

Scheduled to open in 2020, the 235-room hotel will re-introduce the brand to Australia. Le Meridien will be built on the site of Burke Street’s former Palace Theatre. Le Meridien has recently had openings in Italy, South Korea, China and the US over the past year.


Corroboree at the Gold CoastCorroboree at the Gold Coast

The Gold Coast has been announced to host Tourism Australia’s 2018 Corroboree Asia event. The biennial trade event will bring over 100 Australian tourism operators and 300 delegates from China, Japan, Korea, India Indonesia and Singapore to Gold Coast’s first time hosting this event. It will be held 26-31 August 2018.


Langham MelbourneLangham Melbourne new ballroom

The Langham in Melbourne has announced that it will debut its newly expanded ballroom overlooking the Yarra River in February 2019. The new spaces will feature a new tech filled boardroom, function and meeting rooms, a ‘gallery’ pre-function space and a 630-guest Yarra Ballroom. The 572m2 ballroom can also seat 360 banquet style and 425 in a theatre layout.


ICC SydneyInternational Convention Centre Sydney

The ICC Sydney has beat its revenue goal for its first year according to figures released in its inaugural Annual Performance Report. Their target of $200 million was beaten with a margin of $585 million – with 71% of that based on international and inter-state visitors. The venue has also helped with local industry too, creating 1.5 million overnight stays in Sydney and 3,700 jobs.


VIDCONVidCon deal with Melbourne

VidCon has signed another two-year contract at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre. VidCon is the world’s largest exhibition of digital content creators and Melbourne is the only city in the Asia Pacific to host. VidCon takes places 31 August to 2 September 2018.


Ecotourism TownsvilleTownsville major eco event

The southern hemisphere’s biggest ecotourism conference is set to take place in Townville this year from 26-28 November. Ecotourism Australia’s Global Eco Asia-Pacific Tourism Conference 2018 will be hosted at the Rydges Southbank Townsville and is set to make the environmental impact climate change is having on the Great Barrier Reef a key focus. The conference will bring 300 of the world’s best on ecotourism to Townsville.


Global RetailGold Coast scores retail summit

Retail Global is set to come to the Gold Coast Exhibition Centre from 23-25 May. The event will bring together hundreds of local and global retail experts with over 60 exhibitors present. With the recent launch of Amazon in Australia this is expected to be a key discussion point.


Industry Funding

Australia’s Minister for Trade and Investment Steve Ciobo has announced that the Australian Government will add $12 million into the business event industry to help boost its attraction to international events. The bid is an attempt to increase the number of top-tier travellers visiting the country.


New Zealand

NZ SPENDNZ international spend increase

New Zealand’s ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment has released a report showing a significant increase in international convention delegate spend in 2017. The Convention Delegate Survey spend was up 17% compared to what it was in December 2016. New Zealand saw a 9% increase in delegate numbers and the duration of stay increased by 20% bringing the average to 7.2 nights.


AucklandAuckland nabs Education Conference

New Zealand has secured the Asia-Pacific Association for International Education Annual Conference and Exhibition in 2021. The international conference will be held at the New Zealand International Convention Centre and is set to host more than 1,700 delegates and 200 exhibitors. The conference is estimated to contribute a tourism spend of $3.3 million.