Darwin welcomes planners to the Top End

A group of event planners from the association, corporate and not-for-profit sectors recently discovered Darwin.

A group of event planners from the association, corporate and not-for-profit sectors recently discovered Darwin.

Eleven highly-qualified planners from across Australia participated in the annual Meet Darwin famil run by the Darwin Convention Centre and the Northern Territory Convention Bureau.

Business sessions were a key component of the four day event and provided a snapshot of the NT’s various assets as a business events destination, as well as an overview of the very positive economic, cultural and social drivers of Darwin. 

Presentations were made by the NT Government’s Department of Tourism and Culture, Department of Trade, Business and Innovation and Tourism Top End. The NT Government Minister for Education and representatives from the NT Government Department of Health, Tourism NT and Tourism Top End also attended the culturally-inspired finale dinner held at the Darwin Convention Centre.

Speaking about this level of support, Parks & Leisure Australia CEO Mark Band said, “The ease of access to government and willingness to work with interstate organisations to do business in the Territory makes Darwin a compelling conference destination,” he said.  “Also the accessibility to facilities, both conference and off-site venues. The link to Asia is a real attraction and being able to tap into that market is a major selling point for our conference.”  

Meet Darwin provided participants with insights into some of Darwin’s leading organisations such as the globally-recognised National Critical Care and Trauma Response Centre, a specialised training facility that also provides a rapid response to incidents that pose significant health threats. Its strategic geographic location makes it Australia’s first responder to major onshore and offshore incidents.

The group’s visit to the Royal Flying Doctor Service Tourist Facility in Darwin also provided invaluable background on Darwin’s history, the role played by the city in WWII and the crucial ongoing service provided by Australia’s unique and iconic flying doctor service 

Meet Darwin provided scope for planners to undertake invaluable networking with their sector peers in Darwin and also view the city’s business events infrastructure, the flagship of which is the 1200-seat Darwin Convention Centre.

A Pudakul Aboriginal Cultural Tours experience enabled interaction with young members of an Aboriginal community and the chance to learn about the cultural traditions, activities and environment.  An Aboriginal art class held aboard the ‘Charles Darwin’ cruise vessel on the magnificent Darwin harbour enabled participants to create their own culturally-inspired artwork.

In addition to the cultural dinner at the Darwin Convention Centre, delegates dined at renowned Darwin restaurant venue, Pee Wee’s at the Point, which has recently undergone a million dollar renovation and expansion. A visit to the Mindil Beach Sunset Market on the first evening of the famil provided a chance to see a Top End sunset, while enjoying crocodile-meat tasting at Smokey J’s, which is one of the 60 food stalls and 200 market stalls on offer.

The group stayed at the Hilton Darwin for the duration of the program and also visited a range of other accommodation suppliers, attractions and hospitality venues.

Department of Tourism and Culture acting deputy CEO Andrew Hopper said, “We believe the event program overwhelmingly conveyed that Darwin is a vibrant, competitive and accessible destination for business events, with unique Territory-style offerings. After four days, our VIP delegates departed as ambassadors for the city, inspired by the innovation of our business and industry sectors, charmed by the relaxed and friendly lifestyle, impressed by the ‘can-do’ attitude and the amazing capacity and capability of Darwin.”   


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