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New Port Stephens Events Body Secures Major Convention

October 31, 2013 MICE No Comments Email Email

Destination Port Stephens’ newly formed business events body has scored its first major coup with the announcement that Port Stephens and Newcastle will host the 2014 Australian Regional Tourism Convention, which will boost the area’s economy by an estimated $240,000.

The successful body, MICE Port Stephens, which was formed last year to attract high-yield meeting, incentive, convention and events (MICE) business to the region, has been announced as the winning bidder for the 2014 convention of the Australian Regional Tourism Network (ARTN), which concluded its 2013 convention last week in Margaret River. Shoal Bay Resort and Spa

Recent hosts of the event have included Townsville and Launceston. The conference has the potential to draw up to 180 tourism delegates from across Australia. The ARTN is the peak national body representing regional tourism.

The five-day convention from October 20-24, 2014, will be based at the Whitesands Convention Centre at Shoal Bay Resort & Spa in Port Stephens, with meetings held across the region and in Newcastle with delegates also joining themed tours around Port Stephens and Newcastle with the support of local accommodation providers,  tour operators and attractions. Interstate delegates will also fly into Newcastle-Port Stephens Airport for the conference.

The event will be hosted by MICE Port Stephens in association with parent body, Destination Port Stephens, and in partnership with the City of Newcastle, with funding from the NSW Government’s tourism agency, Destination New South Wales.

Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Events Manager for Destination Port Stephens, Rebecca Morley, said the tourism convention was a major coup for the area, with the conference set to inject up to $240,000 into the region’s economy, based on official figures for average-per-day expenditure by business delegates.

“Established just over eight months ago to attract more business events and corporate travellers into our region throughout the year, MICE Port Stephens is delighted to have scored its first major events win, with the ARTN convention attracting key tourism representatives from around Australia – it is a wonderful opportunity to showcase all that we have to offer to our industry peers,” Ms Morley said.

“Port Stephens has long been a popular seaside destination for leisure travellers but this win shows our area is also perfect for corporate visitors who want to meet in a spectacular but relaxed environment. Our renewed partnership with Newcastle is showing dividends and we are certain our success will pave the way for our region to attract more high-yielding events and conferences in the future.”

For detailed information on events, group activities, dining, attractions and transport, visit

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