Town frozen out in ski promo’

Ruapehu Press - - Front Page - FRANCES FER­GU­SON

Tau­marunui has been left out of a ‘Three Sk­i­fields, Five Towns’ Aus­tralian mar­ket­ing strat­egy, de­spite $50,000 of fund­ing com­ing from the Ruapehu Dis­trict Council.

Coun­cil­lors have ques­tioned the value of the joint Taupo¯ Dis­trict Council, Ruapehu and Ruapehu Alpine Lifts win­ter mar­ket col­lab­o­ra­tion. It is con­tribut­ing $50,000 a year to­wards the $250,000 cam­paign.

The council was up­dated on the col­lab­o­ra­tion at a meet­ing last week.

Tau­marunui ward coun­cil­lor Karen Ngatai ques­tioned what the ben­e­fits to ratepay­ers were, in light of the fact that Tau­marunui was left out.

‘‘We are closer to the moun­tain than Taupo¯ yet we’re not men­tioned.

‘‘When you have a cam­paign that says, ‘‘Stay Taupo¯ ,’’ and ‘‘ski Ruapehu,’’ then you sell it from Taupo¯ how do our ratepay­ers ben­e­fit?

‘‘Tau­marunui is the big­gest con­trib­u­tor of ratepayer money and we’re left out.’’

‘‘We are closer to the moun­tain than Taupo¯ yet we're not men­tioned.’’ Karen Ngatai

RAL gen­eral man­ager for sales and mar­ket­ing Michelle Cald­well said Taupo¯ has the ‘‘pull’’ to get tourist to click on the web­site.

‘‘It gets them in, gets them look­ing and they start plan­ning.

‘‘There’ll be a Na­tional Park and Ohakune story that sits un­der­neath the Taupo¯ story but for us it’s the hook but it’s not the only mes­sage we send out.’’

Tau­marunui Ward coun­cil­lor, Kim Wheeler asked to see what mea­sures were in place to see the growth in each area.

‘‘We need to see some facts on what’s go­ing on here.’’

Des­ti­na­tion Great Lake Taupo¯ gen­eral man­ager Damien Coutts said they can present spend data from Aus­tralia each month for the Ruapehu Dis­trict.

The ‘Three Sk­i­fields, Five Towns’ slo­gan has been used to pro­mote Win­ter ski­ing to the Aus­tralian mar­ket­ing. Those five towns are Taupo¯, Tu­rangi, Whaka­papa Vil­lage, Na­tional Park and O¯ hakune.

Mayor, Don Cameron said un­less Tau­marunui had a ho­tel the town needed to look at other ways to bring vis­i­tors to town.

Cald­well said there wasn’t enough ac­com­mo­da­tion in the dis­trict to cater for the growth and a in­ter­na­tional five star ho­tel was needed.

‘‘We still need the prod­uct and ac­com­mo­da­tion, you can’t sell some­thing that isn’t there.’’

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