Event industry sponsors John Gooch from Shine Aviation and Pia Boschetti from Latitude Gallery made it possible for Tourism students from Geraldton Senior College, Central West Tafe and Nagle Catholic College to attend the eventGrowing Greater Geraldton Tourism Investment Summit

Held Sunday and Monday 27 & 28 May 2018 

Around 250 delegates engaged with a panel of high profile tourism industry speakers about Growing Greater Geraldton Tourism at Geraldton's Queens Park Theatre.

The Summit was the first of its kind to be held in Geraldton and was hosted by the City of Greater Geraldton in conjunctions with Tourism Geraldton.  It provided an opportunity for industry, policy makers, regulators and funders to share information, understand the opportunities for success and help align on priorities for future industry development.  Of note, was the discussion around the sustainable development of Western Australia's hidden gem - the Houtman Abrolhos Islands.

Guest speakers and VIPs were transported to Geraldton for the Summit on the first ever Qantas 737-800 charter from Geraldton to Perth by Broadwater Hotels and Resorts.  Flown by Qantas's Chief Pilot WA, passengers enjoyed a bird's eye view of the Houtman Abrolhos Islands at 1500ft.

The Summit kicked off with a Welcome Sundowner at the Broadwater Mariner Resort Geraldton on Sunday evening.  Guests were officially welcomed by City of Greater Geraldton Mayor Shane Van Styn and Tourism Geraldton Chair Scott Cogar.

The following day, Brad Farmer, Australia's Beach Ambassador, facilitated the full day program that saw high profile industry players provide insights and address a range of topics around growing tourism in and around Greater Geraldton.  

During the course of the day, delegates engaged in the event by asking questions of the presenters through an interactive app.  A summary of the QUESTIONS by Delegates and the ANSWERS provided by the presenters can be found by clicking here.

A copy of the PROGRAM AND PRESENTATIONS can be found below.  Simply click on the title to review the presentation.

 SESSION 1: Exploring the Future of Tourism in the Midwest

Opening Address - A Message from the Premier of Western Australia
Hon. Darren West MLC

Tourism WA two year action plan and what it means for Greater Geraldton
Derryn Belford - Tourism WA Executive Director Destination 

Shane Van Styn - Mayor City of Greater Geraldton

Growing the Tourism Economy
Scott Cogar – Chair Tourism Geraldton - Managing Director Broadwater Hotels & Resorts

SESSION 2: Destination Assets (Natural and Built)

Tourism Opportunities for Geraldton and the Mid West Region: Eco, Geo and Cruise Tourism
Professor Ross Dowling OAM

The appeal of the Pink Lake & the Houtman Abrolhos Islands
Wendy Mann - Managing Director - Geraldton Air Charter 

Houtman Abrolhos Islands National Park
Kathleen Lowry - Principal Policy Adviser, Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions

SESSION 3: Investment and Capital - Private and Public Partnerships

Why and how RAC WA Invests - What Geraldton can do to attract investment!
Tony Pickworth - RAC WA Executive General Manager Brand and Tourism 

Leveraging Investment Funds - for Tourism Investment
Jason Bunter - COMMBank Regional Manager - Midwest & Wheatbelt

SESSION 4: Destination Building with Available Assets and Capital

Taking it to the Air
Julian Barry  - Qantas - Regional Manager WA

Cruising - Carnival Australia's plans for Cruising in Western Australia
Michael Mihajlov - Destination Director - Carnival Australia

The importance of telling the Story
Paul Ma - Paul Ma designs

The day culminated in a Summit Celebration at Harbourview Restaurant Marine Terrace Geraldton.

Key tourism industry experts on stage at the Summit

Over 230 delegates attended the Summit and enjoyed opportunities to network with government and industry representatives.

A special THANK YOU to our PARTNERS: