Tourism in­dus­try mes­sage

Whitsunday Times - - FRONT PAGE -

THE Whit­sun­days is open for busi­ness.

This is the mes­sage from the re­gion’s tourism in­dus­try and the mantra our state and fed­eral politi­cians are chant­ing to the world.

Fed­eral Tourism Min­is­ter Steven Ciobo was first to spread the word on Tues­day, beamed to the na­tion’s tele­vi­sion screens from Hamilton Is­land via a live cross on Chan­nel 9’s To­day Show.

“We have 10,000 jobs in the Whit­sun­days’ tourism in­dus­try, in­clud­ing places like Air­lie Beach and they want Aus­tralians to know that they are open for busi­ness,” he told the To­day Show’s hosts.

“These guys are so re­silient – they’re bounc­ing back straight away and I’ve got to say they have done an out­stand­ing job at get­ting the place cleaned up...

“The best way that Aussies can show their sup­port for other Aussies who’ve just been through a dif­fi­cult time is to put their money where their mouth is, take that Easter hol­i­day, take that break over the win­ter pe­riod – come back and sup­port the Whit­sun­days tourism in­dus­try.”

Mr Ciobo’s words were echoed by State Tourism Min­is­ter Kate Jones who, at a press con­fer­ence in Air­lie Beach, said Whit­sun­day tourism op­er­a­tors had worked “re­ally hard around the clock for your Easter long week­end”.

“So please, if you’re still plan­ning your hol­i­day, there is time to book and come and see the beau­ti­ful Whit­sun­days this Easter hol­i­day,” she im­plored the pub­lic through the na­tional press.

“Also, we’ve got long week­ends com­ing up across Queens­land, the Labour Day week­end and the An­zac week­end. Come and show your sup­port and your spirit for the Whit­sun­days and Queens­land tourism.”

When asked what vis­i­tors could ex­pect from the is­lands and reef, Tourism Whit­sun­days chair­man Allen Grundy said the place was still heaven.

“We’ve been tak­ing vis­i­tors out since April 1,” he said.

“If you walk up to Hill In­let, the beach look­ing down, which is called Hill In­let Beach and Betty’s Beach – it looks amaz­ing.

“What’s hap­pened is some of the sand from the beach has blown to the north­ern end so that bit of beach is big­ger than ever.

“The south­ern end of the beach was dam­aged but it’s un­der re­con­struc­tion at the mo­ment – and Na­tional Parks... are do­ing a phe­nom­e­nal job.

“The walk­ing tracks have opened up re­ally quickly – the Hill In­let walk – the beau­ti­ful walk up in Nara In­let to look at the Abo­rig­i­nal draw­ings and South White­haven Beach.

“Guests that came back from one of our tours went and vis­ited Hasle­wood Is­land and Chalkies Beach and had a mag­nif­i­cent time swimming.”

In terms of the reef Mr Grundy said places like Caves Cove and Stone­haven were still in good or­der “and we’re go­ing there to snorkel”.

“There’s places near Hook Is­land... where we’re find­ing good co­ral and I’ve no doubt the outer Bar­rier Reef is in good shape as well,” he said.

These guys are so re­silient – they’re bounc­ing straight back. — Steven Ciobo


CHEERS: Fed­eral Tourism Min­is­ter Steven Ciobo, State Tourism Min­is­ter Kate Jones, Tourism Whit­sun­days chair­man Al Grundy, Whit­sun­day Mayor An­drew Will­cox, Tourism Whit­sun­days CEO Craig Turner, Cruise Whit­sun­days CEO Nick Hor­tle, BIG4 Ad­ven­ture Whit­sun­day co-owner Naomi McKin­non, Fed­eral Mem­ber for Daw­son Ge­orge Chris­tensen, Car­ni­val Aus­tralia ex­ec­u­tive chair­woman Ann Sherry AO, Ocean Raft­ing co-owner Peter Clax­ton, Char­ter Yachts Aus­tralia co-owner An­nie Judd, Whit­sun­day Tran­sit man­ager Ben Mal­ady, Mantra Club Croc GM Luke Har­ley and Bri­gadeer Chris Field cel­e­brat­ing the fact that the Whit­sun­days is open for busi­ness well in time for Easter.

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