A range of venues, accommodation and bars and restaurants were put on show during the This is Gold Coast Business Exchange held last weekend. The destination is in makeover mode, preparing for the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
To get a taste of things to come, PCOs were went behind the scenes several leading hotels, including Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort & Spa, the Royal Pines Resort, QT Gold Coast, Mercure, and the Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort.
Groups also checked out various venues across the city that would host events at the games, including the new-look Gold Coast Aquatic Centre following its $41 million redevelopment, which will be the swimming and diving facility for the games, and the Metricon Stadium & Carrara Sports & Leisure Centre, which will be home to the opening and closing ceremonies.
Delegates then headed indoors for the pinnacle event - The This is Gold Coast Business Exchange, held at the Gold Coast Convention Centre.
Anna Case, director, says the event was an opportunity to open doors that may otherwise be a challenge.
‘We’re building a reputation, a great profile, here on the Gold Coast. Yes we are rivals, but we need to work together, collaborate, to showcase Gold Coast as a destination,’ she says. ‘That was this event is all about. It’s our job to put it all together.’
‘We want the clients to experience the Gold Coast for themselves, so they can feel confident about what they are buying and so they can trust their clients will be well looked after.’
Case says there are plenty of new niche destinations across the Gold Coast, and that’s what the region has to do to remain relevant.
“Every other destination in Australia is a competitor. We need to make sure we’re the point of difference so clients choose us instead of someone else. And we can only do that if we show off our destination together.’
Case says the Gold Coast was chosen at the host for the 201 Commonwealth Games for a reason. ‘We can deliver these types of events. We have the infrastructure. We have the people. There is a new energy - it’s buzzing. Sport brings people and communities together, and it’s bringing our industry together as well.’