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Australia steps in fast as Meghan-mania spreads

December 4, 2017 Headline News No Comments Email Email

“Meghan-mania” – the infatuation with American star Meghan Markle, soon to wed Britain’s Prince Harry – is spreading rapidly and when the honeymoon happens, Australia’s tourism industry is determined not to be left out.

Australia has issued a golden invitation to the Prince and his betrothed to honeymoon here.

Experts estimate the wedding next May will benefit Britain to the tune of GBP 500 million (about AUD 885 million), as thousands flock to the environs of St George’s Chapel in Windsor, where the couple will tie the knot. A TV audience of millions will watch around the world.

Then there’s the honeymoon. In Australia? Maybe. Australia’s Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Steven Ciobo, said on Friday: “I have written to His Royal Highness Prince Henry of Wales, congratulating him on his engagement to Ms Meghan Markle and inviting him to Australia for his pre-wedding celebrations and honeymoon.”

Ciobo may be the first person for some time to call the prince “Henry”, but the minister probably feels he needs to start off on a formal note.

“I have offered the services of Tourism Australia to design the ultimate Australian experience for the celebrations,” Ciobo continued.

“Having previously visited Australia, Prince Harry is no doubt aware of the amazing experiences we have to offer. From the world’s best beaches and endless coastlines, to the vast and ancient landscapes of the interior to our vibrant cites and thriving food and wine scene, Australia has it all.

“Australia can provide the perfect pre-wedding party and an amazing romantic honeymoon after the wedding.

“For Prince Harry’s pre-wedding celebrations, Tourism Australia has recommend some of Australia’s best adventure experiences on Queensland’s Gold Coast and through the wilds of Northern Territory and Western Australia.

“And for the perfect honeymoon, Tourism Australia has recommended Australia’s luxury lodges including Tasmania’s Saffire Freycinet, Longitude 131 in the Northern Territory where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have previously stayed, Southern Ocean Lodge on Kangaroo Island, just off the coast of South Australia and Queensland’s Lizard Island, uniquely located on the Great Barrier Reef.

“These are just recommendations, I told Prince Harry Tourism Australia stands ready to work with him and Ms Markle to design an itinerary to their tastes.

“Australia would be honoured to welcome Prince Harry and Ms Markle to celebrate some small part of their wedding with us in Australia. Our tourism operators, and the nation, would welcome them with open arms.”

An answer is keenly awaited.

Written by Peter Needham

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