Super-charging the regional economy
For the first time in recorded history, the Hamilton & Waikato region has surpassed $1.45bn in visitor expenditure (for the year ended September 2017). This is a seven percent growth on the same period last year and very exciting news.
The latest data released from the Ministry for Business, Innovation & Employment (MBIE) show the region collected $107m for the month of September, with the majority coming from domestic visitors ($85m), placing the region fourth behind Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington for domestic spend.
Growth in accommodation sector
Hamilton’s Sudima Hotel and Distinction Hotel are both undergoing major revamps, while Novotel Hamilton Tainui is about to start their $13 million extension which will bring with it 40 extra rooms.
Ventura Inn and Suites in Clarence Street also recently completed their major refurbishment, giving it a more contemporary feel.
Combined with new accommodation options around the region being announced and launched, this is a move in the right direction for increasing the accommodation inventory, especially during high demand with major events and seasonal peaks.
Business Events cements its success
We have had a fantastic year for business events in Hamilton & Waikato, with our region claiming third behind Auckland and Wellington as the favoured New Zealand destination for conference organisers. Our region has now secured nearly 11% market share of total events of this market.
Business events are a lucrative sector for our region and every conference, meeting or trade show we can secure for the region is significant, regardless of the sector or size. A delegate attending a business event was worth twice as much of a leisure traveller to the region, with an average delegate per night value of $350 per night for international delegates and $509 per night for domestic delegates.
Conference delegates are also influenced to return for a future holiday based on their positive Waikato experiences.
If you have any business event you wish to hold in the region, remember to contact our Business Events team who are here to help.
Recognition well deserved
Huge congratulations to Michelle Baillie, SkyCity Hamilton General Manager and Hobbiton Movie Set Chief Operating Officer Kirsten Madill who both gained recognition at the 2017 Westpac Waikato Business Awards. Michelle won CEO of the Year, while Kirsten won the Emerging Leader of the Year award.
H3 operations manager Claire Toko also recently won a top award from the Entertainment Venues Association of New Zealand. Claire was awarded the Simpson Grierson Operations Manager of the Year award for her significant contribution to the industry.
We are fortunate to have such talented women leaders in the industry – ka pai to mahi! These awards are just a few of many that members of our industry have gained this year, and we are thrilled to see the recognition given to them for their hard work and commitment to our region.