1 December 2014, Written by Jenna Rathbone

SIX Gold Coast tourism operators and one of the region’s young industry entrepreneurs, Bradley Illich, have been recognised in the 2014 Queensland Tourism Awards.

Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat, Dreamworld, Cooly Rocks On, Nightfall Wilderness Camp, Sea World Whale Watch and Pethers Rainforest Retreat were among 80 organisational Awards announced at the ceremony.

Illich (pictured), director of NewBook eManagement Technology, took home the 2014 young achiever award which was one of just two individual awards.

The 30th anniversary celebration of the annual recognition program, hosted by the Queensland Tourism Industry Council (QTIC), reflected on Queensland’s tourism past and paid tribute to those transforming the industry.

QTIC Chief Executive Daniel Gschwind says the awards give businesses and individuals an opportunity to take pride in their contributions to the tourism industry, raise the standard of quality tourism experiences throughout the state and strive for ongoing improvements to achieve tourism goals.

“Since 1985, the Queensland Tourism Awards have served to highlight tourism’s powerful role in driving Queensland’s economic and community development,” he says.

“Tourism has been through its fair share of challenges, yet the industry’s commitment and passion has helped it remain resilient and strong - this is what has made Queensland tourism what it is today.

“Today, the industry employs more than 235,000 Queenslanders and is the second largest export earner for this state.  Much of the credit for this success goes to the innovative businesses that have been recognised through the Awards.”

The event included 30 Gold, 28 Silver, 22 Bronze and two individual awards for outstanding achievements across 32 award categories.

Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games Jann Stuckey says the Queensland Tourism Awards are a benchmark for industry excellence.

“On behalf of the Queensland Government I would like to commend all of the award winners as well as the Queensland Tourism Industry Council for their dedication to the future prosperity of the industry,” Ms Stuckey said.

“Operators who strive to find something extra, and give tourists an experience they will never forget, should be congratulated.”

A total of 189 nominations were received from entrants throughout Queensland.

Twenty-two Queensland Tourism Awards entries for organisations and individuals were received from the Gold Coast region.


Author: Jenna Rathbone
About: Jenna Rathbone is a Queensland-based journalist who writes on a range of issues including business and property affairs and social issues.
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