Leon Bignell MP
Minister for Tourism
South Australian Tourism Industry Council (SATIC)
Adelaide Zoo has been awarded the inaugural RAA People’s Choice Tourism Award at the 2017 South Australian Tourism Awards, recognising the finalist who demonstrated a high level of service excellence, as voted by the public. Hahndorf Resort Tourist Park received the prestigious Premier’s Award for Service Excellence, recognising their commitment to delivering an outstanding customer service experience.
Five businesses were also inducted into the South Australian Tourism Hall of Fame, having won their respective categories for a consecutive third year:
The Awards were announced at a gala dinner on Friday, 10 November at the Adelaide Convention Centre with more than 860 industry representatives in attendance. Recognised as Tourism’s Night of Nights, the Awards celebrate more than 30 category winners who have demonstrated great success and set the benchmarks for best business practice within the industry. This year, an outstanding five first-entrants were crowned best in their categories.
In addition, over 40 finalists took home silver and bronze medals, seven of which were first-time entrants, representing the outstanding commitment to tourism within our State.
The City of Adelaide – Welcome China Project won the award for International Ready – a new category recognising a tourism business or attraction that delivers outstanding tourism products or service to international visitors, demonstrating an understanding of the international visitor and markets.
John Culshaw received the Outstanding Contribution by an Individual award. John is the founder, owner and operator of the Majestic Hotels group. As a volunteer Board Director of the Adelaide Convention Bureau, John has made a significant contribution to the establishment of a Convention Bid Fund and has personally put forward enormous investments to support Adelaide and regional South Australia.
Samir 'Sam' Hasic was awarded the South Australian Taxi Driver of the Year category – an award which celebrates exceptional customer service and the taxi industry’s significant contribution to South Australia’s tourism industry.
Kelsey Reilly was named South Australian Tourism Student of the Year. Kelsey is a student at the University of South Australia and has become engaged in the tourism industry through her international study tours and various volunteer experiences.
South Australian Tourism Industry Council (SATIC) Chief Executive Officer, Shaun de Bruyn congratulated all winners, medallists and Hall of Fame inductees.
“South Australians should be proud of the world-class experiences we have on offer. This year we received an impressive 174 nominations, therefore receiving a win or medal is a fantastic achievement and represents the passion, innovation and hard work put forward by our tourism industry.
“The standards for achieving a Tourism Award win or medal are extremely high, making it a highly regarded accolade and powerful tool to raise brand awareness and enhance reputation and marketing appeal.
“As the peak body for South Australia’s tourism industry, SATIC remains committed to working alongside our members and the industry at large, to grow profitability, as well as industry growth opportunities and outcomes, ensuring our tourism industry is second to none,” said Mr de Bruyn.
South Australian Minister for Tourism, Leon Bignell thanked the tourism industry for its passion, dedication and commitment to the South Australian visitor economy.
“These awards are a celebration of the tourism industry and the hard work our operators put in each day to deliver outstanding service to visitors and locals, who then go on to become ambassadors and advocates for South Australia.
“During the last four years the visitor economy in South Australia has increased by 30 per cent to a record $6.3 billion, which is a testament to those putting in the hours and coming up with innovative, new tourism experiences.
“The State Government is proud to support tourism operators in South Australia and we have pumped in an extra $70m drive growth and create jobs in the tourism sector.
“I wish this year’s winners all the best of luck as they go on to represent our great State at the national awards.”
The Awards are judged alongside strict rules and criteria, with most winners going on to represent South Australia at the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards in Perth in February 2018.
For the full list of state-wide winners, please click here