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Innovative Rotorua tourism partnership programme launched

News Release

Thursday 11 September 2014

Innovative Rotorua tourism partnership programme launched

An extra $700,000 to $800,000 a year is to be injected into promoting Rotorua and driving changes in perception and appeal for the destination, as a result of a new visitor industry initiative.

The Rotorua Tourism Partner Investment Programme has been launched as a voluntary, visitor industry-led, long-term fundraising investment model. It will supplement ratepayer contributions and enable a game-changing approach to the way Rotorua is marketed.

The programme is driven by nearly 80 of the city’s visitor sector operators to date, comprising attractions, activities and accommodation operators at all levels, and supported by Rotorua District Council’s business unit, Destination Rotorua Marketing, Events, i-SITE & Venues.

“Rotorua tourism industry participants in this programme are to be applauded for taking a leadership position in what is the first public/private partnership of its type in the country,” says Skyline Rotorua general manager Bruce Thomasen.

“Our industry strength lies in leveraging visitor volume, which at over 3.3 million visitors per annum puts Rotorua in the top five destinations in New Zealand. This partnership enables Rotorua to punch above its weight in marketing the destination, in ways that just could not happen otherwise,” he said.

Ogo Group partner Melissa Craig said that for an owner-operator investing in Rotorua for the long term, the partnership made a lot of sense.

“It’s pleasing to see many smaller businesses have committed to the partnership. Rotorua can’t rest on its laurels and this programme ensures we’re all working together to reach our goals,” says Ms Craig.

The ongoing marketing investment is seen as a vital step for contributing to the programme’s key aim of doubling Rotorua’s domestic and international visitor receipts - from the current level of $502 million to $1 billion - by 2030.

Rotorua Hotels’ Tourism Industry Association sector chairman Gert Taljaard believes the programme represents an exciting new direction.

“It enables the destination, through campaigns such as Famously Rotorua, to remind Kiwis just how fantastic Rotorua is to visit.
“The hotels in our city continue to make significant investment into their products and services and this campaign activity provides us with the platform to communicate our position as the leading visitor destination in New Zealand.”

That sentiment is supported by Rotorua Association of Motels’ chairman Barry Mabey who says it is good to see the tourism industry working together to profile the best of Rotorua’s past, present and future “in such a cohesive way.”

Rotorua Mayor Steve Chadwick said driving Rotorua’s domestic marketing position was one of the highest priorities for the council and the local visitor sector, and she applauded the programme’s partners for being leaders in their industry.

“I want to acknowledge the efforts of the former Rotorua Tourism Committee members and the various visitor sector groups who assisted in the programme’s design, and for securing commitment to the initiative. I look forward to the momentum being continued by the recently established transition board of our Destination Rotorua Marketing, Events, i-SITE & Venues business unit.

“Changing the perception and ultimately the reality of Rotorua in the eyes of both residents and visitors is a major component of our Rotorua 2030 strategic direction, and the ongoing delivery of the Famously Rotorua campaign is a major driver of that,” said Mrs Chadwick.

“Another critical aspect is the commitment of the council to work in a different way with a focus on genuine partnerships, and we want to acknowledge the industry for developing this approach as a true example of partnerships in action.”


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