Australia’s leading event planners have been gifted a tree to increase the habitat of tree kangaroos on the Atherton Tablelands in Tropical North Queensland as a thank you for attending the Cairns & Great Barrier Reef Business Events Regional Showcase in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne this week.

Tourism Tropical North Queensland General Manager of Partnerships and Events Rosie Douglas said more than 100 corporate meeting planners, professional conference organisers, destination management companies and incentive houses across the three cities were attending launches on August 1, 3 and 4 to learn more about the business events capabilities of the region.

“Cairns has already hosted key conferences this year, such as Cannes in Cairns and the Third International Indigenous Health and Wellbeing Conference, which exceeded expected delegate numbers thanks to the choice of destination,” Rosie Douglas said.

“Event planners want to know more about why Cairns events are so successful, and the Business Events team and 20 of our members will discuss that with them during the lunches after a video showcasing our latest offerings.

“There is much excitement about reopening the Cairns Convention Centre’s $176 million expansion, and planners are keen to explore the new state-of-the-art spaces. The expansion adds 10,500 m² of meeting space, including a stunning rooftop banquet room and terrace, three new meeting rooms, an exhibition space and a plenary room.

“We are highlighting the region’s world-class tourism infrastructure, which complements business events by offering delegates a choice of accommodation within walking distance of their event and more than 2,000 tours on their doorstep.

“Our stunning World Heritage areas are the perfect backdrop for offsite events and gala dinners with the wow factor that event planners crave.

“Importantly, Tropical North Queensland delivers sustainable events in a destination that values the environment, people and culture and invites visitors to do the same through initiatives such as the tree gifts we purchased through Reforest.

“Accommodation, meeting spaces, restaurants and the Reef Fleet Terminal are all within walking distance in Cairns city, which is just a 10-minute drive from the airport, ensuring minimal requirements for transport.

“The business events industry is a valuable contributor to Tropical North Queensland’s regional economy, helping to support the one in five jobs that depended on tourism before the pandemic.

“Each business event delegate is worth almost three times that of a leisure visitor, and they help to fill our destination’s shoulder season, often returning with their family as a leisure visitor to enjoy our diverse natural tourism experiences.”