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Lifestyle : NSW Tourism Awards 2011
1HERSA1 V003 travel nsw tourism awards THE SUN-HERALD SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2011 3 The best of the best WELCOME to this special edition of The Sun-Herald Travel section, which celebrates the winners and finalists of the 22nd annual NSW Tourism Awards. As the state's leading industry accolades, the NSW Tourism Awards recognise excellence, leadership and success in a sector that is worth $28.7 billion to the NSW economy each year and supports more than 160,300 jobs. The state government is determined to again make the NSW economy No. 1 and that is why it is investing $400 million over the next four years to support the newly established statutory authority Destination NSW. This money will be used to showcase and develop attractions and events in Sydney and across the state. This Sun-Herald Travel special report highlights the quality and diversity of tourist attractions and experiences in the state and I encourage you to take the opportunity to visit and experience the award winners and outstanding finalists. Together we can secure NSW as Australia's leading tourism and events destination and help restore the state to its pre-eminent position, where it belongs. I congratulate the winners and finalists and know each of them will welcome you with open arms when you visit. George Souris, MP Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Hospitality and Racing Minister for the Arts The results are in THIS year's NSW Tourism Awards, held in Sydney on Thursday to celebrate outstanding contributions to the industry, attracted a record number of entries. In its 22nd year, there were 230 entries across 30 categories vying for the prestigious gongs acknowledging excellence and innovation. More than 750 people attended the black tie event held at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre at Darling Harbour, with NSW Tourism Minister George Souris, newly appointed chief executive officer of Destination NSW Sandra Chipchase and executive officer of the Tourism Industry Council Andrew Jefferies among the VIPs. Hosted by Sydney Weekender TV host Mike Whitney, the event brought together representatives from both global tourism chains and small owner-operators from the 11 tourism hubs across the state. The judging panel, chaired by Reg Edwards and made up of a range of prominent industry professionals, visited each entrant's property or experience over a three-month period, narrowing the finalists down to a list of 151. The 30 winners announced at the ceremony will go on to represent NSW in the national awards to be held in Cairns in March. See page 2 for a complete list of finalists and winners. Winners drive economy THE Tourism Industry Council NSW congratulates the winners, entrants and all those who supported the 2011 NSW Tourism Awards. Despite many of the challenges our industry has faced, from natural disasters, economic problems in Europe and industrial action at home, we have proved our resilience and that we are always ready to bounce back. In the past year, we have seen many positive changes for our industry that will help to boost visitor numbers and spending across the state. These include the election of the O'Farrell government with a new commitment to making tourism and events key drivers to help rebuild the NSW economy; the creation of Destination NSW, combining tourism and major events to encourage growth and investment across the state with the appointment of a new chief executive officer, Sandra Chipchase; a commitment to the construction of a new and enhanced convention and events centre in Sydney; the establishment of the Visitor Economy Taskforce, with the aim of doubling visitor expenditure by the year 2020 and additional investment in regional tourism, including an extra $5 million under the Regional Tourism Product Development Fund. Tourism is made up of all those who travel around or visit NSW on business, to attend an event or visit a friend or relative, as well as those who enjoy a holiday. Tourism's importance and significant economic contribution to NSW deserves to be fostered and celebrated. Please enjoy reading about our award winners and do take advantage of the opportunities they provide. Ken Corbett NSW Tourism Industry Council Chairman special report
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