The Premier and Tourism Minister, The Hon Colin Barnett MLA presided over the official opening of Crown Perth’s luxurious 500-room Crown Towers hotel. This is the first of 24 hotels to open over the next three years, collectively adding almost 4,000 hotel rooms for Perth and surrounding areas.
A deal was signed for Qantas to operate direct flights from Perth Airport to London, commencing in 2018. According to Bradley Woods CEO of AHA(WA), the new direct service will create numerous jobs in the tourism and hospitality industry as visitor numbers increase. “These visitors will be spending in our hotels, restaurants and bars and will provide a boost to the tourism sector as a whole.” Tourism WA economic modelling shows that potential visitor expenditure will be $9 million - $36.4 million per year.
The Port of Fremantle helped introduce ‘supercruising’ to Australia in December. It was the first port of call for RCI’s Ovation of the Seas, before she sailed to her summer home port of Sydney. The ship has 18 levels – 16 accessible to passengers and can carry approximately 6,500 guests and crew.
Tourism WA Leadership
The tourism industry welcomed the appointment of Gwyn Dolphin as Chief Executive Officer of Tourism Western Australia in December 2016.
The review of the “Backpacker tax” was a win for WA’s tourism industry. As of 1 January 2017, backpackers & working holiday makers will be taxed at a rate of 15% on earnings up to $18,000, which according to the AHA(WA) is an outcome that will ensure Australia remains an attractive backpacker destination.