Recent events in Darwin, Australia, have seen record numbers in attendance, with several events hosted at the Darwin Convention Centre in 2018 achieving their highest delegate numbers.
One national example was the Property Council of Australia, which held its annual conference in Darwin, 12-14 September 2018. The two-day event attracted a record-breaking 760 delegates. Some 20%of delegates brought partners keen to explore the country’s ‘Top End’.
The annual Rural Medicine Australia (RMA) Conference was held in Darwin 24-27 October 2018 and organisers beat their aim of 450 conference delegates with a final count of 775 attendees.
Michelle Cuzens, the event coordinator, said: “It was a big number in Darwin — one of our biggest.”
“Darwin was one of those places we weren’t sure if everyone was going to make the trip,” she added. “But many of our delegates told us they’d never been to Darwin, and in our post-event survey, it was a massive stand out that Darwin is a ‘destination city’. It turned out to be a must-visit, and for our delegates, both the cost and the distance wasn’t an issue.”
The 46th biennial Ports Australia Conference, recently held at the Darwin Convention Centre, also achieved high attendance numbers in exceess of target, according to conference organiser Cameron Armstrong of Essential Experiences.
Familiarisation programmes for buyers to Darwin and surrounds include Kakadu National Park, Arnhem Land, Mary River and the Katherine region.
In 2016 organisers made the decision to move leading inbound tourism conference, the 2018 Australian Tourism Export Council (ATEC) Meeting Place, out of its Sydney base, where it had been held for 40 years. “We can definitely say the move has proved to be highly successful,” said ATEC Managing Director Peter Shelley. “This year we achieved record attendance with over 410 delegates attending the Darwin conference.”