It's been a busy pre-FTE schedule with delegates being cruised, helicoptered and driven to site inspectioins, resort openings and hosted functions. We've managed to capture some of the action.
New Zealand’s business events community has been mixing and mingling with meetings, conference and incentive buyers from domestic and overseas markets this week. MEETINGS 2015 was held at ASB Showgrounds on Wednesday and Thursday and organised by Conventions & Incentives New Zealand (CINZ).
The Auckland chapter of Skal held its monthly lunch yesterday at the waterfront restaurant Mikano in Mechanics Bay. Amidst the usual formalities, Nigel Pilkington senior vice president Skal international presented Skal Auckland president, Paul Leigh with a gift from Skal Istanbul from his recent visit to Turkey as part of a delegation to ANZAC for the 100th year commemorations.
Cathay Pacific officially opened its new Parnell office on Friday 29 May, inviting the trade to join in the cutting of ribbons
Relocating from Auckland’s CBD to Parnell, the Cathay team shared drinks with attendees and took part in a traditional Chinese pig cutting ceremony, meant to bring luck to the new premises.
Speaking at the function, country manager Australia, Nelson Chan, says the new office represents Cathay’s new direction.
‘Cathay has traditionally been quite a conservative company, but it’s clear from this office that we are now thinking differently – this has to be the funkiest office I’ve seen in all of Cathay.
‘Last year we made some slight changes to our logo and mission statement, and moving forward we will continue to reflect this in everything we do.’
Starwood Hotels and Resorts in various destinations have seen an increase in New Zealand guests over the past 12 months or so and the trend was reflected in strong interest by the New Zealand travel trade at an expo in Auckland recently.
The Starwood Expo reached New Zealand for the first time this year, with two sessions at the Maritime Room in Auckland and Sydney based regional director of sales and marketing Ashley Hansen says the exercise is almost certain to be repeated.
Some 190 retailers, product managers, corporate travel managers and professional incentive and conference managers RSVP’d to the event.
‘With that sort of response, we definitely see that there is keen interest in Starwood out of this market. People want to know about our brands and our destinations.’
Hansen says the interest has been two way, with hotel representatives from the Pacific, Australia, California, greater China, Macau, Malaysia, Bali and other destinations all heading to Auckland for the expo.
He says the company has plenty of news to share with the trade, including a new Aloft, announced two weeks ago, for Sydney. ‘That will be the second Aloft in Australia and with 133 rooms will bring a different style of four star hotel to Sydney.’
Hansen says Starwood remains optimistic about getting a hotel presence in New Zealand again and hinted that the company is contemplating an Aloft here amongst its options.