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November 19, 2020
In this issue
Best MICE destination in Oceania named
CINZ announces new name
Howard Smith Wharves’ new event space
Hybrid, Sustainable, Innovative: Monaco gets ready for a Bright Future in MICE Travel!
$95m redevelopment of InterContinental Sydney receives approval

Best MICE destination in Oceania named
Auckland has been named the best destination in Oceania for meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) at the inaugural World MICE Awards, 2020, which took place earlier this month. The recipient was determined by votes cast throughout the year by global members of the MICE industry as well as high-end consumers.
Head of Auckland Convention Bureau, Anna Hayward, said the award and nominations for Auckland businesses across other categories is testament to Auckland’s reputation as a desirable business events destination.
“It’s wonderful to have this recognition, indicating that Auckland’s reputation as a leading business events destination still holds strong with international industry and clients, despite the challenges our industry has faced this year.
“When the time is right, we look forward to extending our manaakitanga and seeing the world’s great minds gather here to connect, share knowledge, and create opportunities.”
Two of Auckland’s newest hotels were also nominated in Oceania’s Best New MICE Hotel 2020 category: Park Hyatt Auckland and SO Auckland Hotel. In addition, Crowne Plaza Auckland won New Zealand’s Best MICE Hotel 2020.
CINZ announces new name
The peak body of New Zealand’s business events sector has a new name: Business Events Industry Aotearoa (BEIA), reflecting its own distinct role within tourism and events. Formerly Conventions and Incentives New Zealand (CINZ), BEIA represents 460 members across New Zealand who work within the meetings, incentives, conferences and conventions, and exhibitions sector.
The new brand will go live on December 1, 2020, to coincide with the industry’s re-connection event, BE Reconnected, which will take place in Auckland.
BEIA chief executive Lisa Hopkins said the new name gives its members the mandate to own the industry.
“We are using a globally-acknowledged term, and there is no ambiguity about who we represent and what we do. Our new brand maintains our connection to Aotearoa New Zealand, with the palette reflecting the colours of our ocean, alps and native birds.
“Incorporating a myriad of organisations, international, large and small businesses, right across New Zealand’s tourism and business events landscape, this sector will continue to be a proactive and energetic partner with government in the vital work needed for New Zealand’s economic and social recovery.”
Howard Smith Wharves’ new event space
In August, we reported that the rustic-style event space in Brisbane’s Howard Smith Wharves precinct was rumoured to be transitioning into a German beer hall. Well, the day has come. This week Howard Smith Wharves has introduced Felons Barrell Hall, a space described as casual and contemporary that celebrates the magic of barrel conditioned and blended beer.
Groups of up to 512 can enjoy the signature Barrel Hall experience with a full-venue takeover, enjoying views of Brisbane River while feasting on South Asian-inspired flavours and sipping on fresh beers. The space offers full concert audio, sizeable screens and an on-site production team.
Find out more about the venue’s event possibilities here. 
Hybrid, Sustainable, Innovative: Monaco gets ready for a Bright Future in MICE Travel!
Monaco is celebrating National Day today, and the Monaco Convention Bureau dearly misses its Australian and New Zealand event planners.
Whilst the Principality is eagerly awaiting your return, there are so many reasons to be inspired by this MICE Destination of Excellence. The Princely government has rapidly responded to the challenges of the current context with the implementation of a “Monaco Safe” label, whilst Monaco’s hotels and its congress centre, Grimaldi Forum Monaco are adopting innovative hybrid events strategies – all of which put Monaco’s most important priority at the very core: Sustainability.
Watch a short video on Monaco here. 
$95m redevelopment of InterContinental Sydney receives approval
Following the NSW Department of Planning and Environment’s final building approval, Mulpha has now commenced construction work on the $95 million redevelopment of Sydney’s 32-storey InterContinental Sydney, enabling the most significant improvements to the hotel in more than 30 years.
The full refurbishment, which has been designed by New York-based architectural firm Rockwell Group and local architect Woods Bagot, will dramatically enhance the hotel’s public-facing amenity while preserving its heritage which dates back to 1851.
The internal upgrade will include all 500+ guest rooms and corridors, as well as refurbishment of the ground level including the Macquarie Street entry, receptions, and the inclusion of a new iconic public bar within the heritage central court. There will also be a full refurbishment of the hotel’s all-day dining restaurant, level 31 gym and pool, and another new bar within the level 32 Club InterContinental lounge that will be open to the public.
The external work will include upgrading the iconic entrance on Phillip Street to ensure all-abilities access, roof alterations and expansion of the top-level Club InterContinental lounge, new greenery along the Phillip Street façade, and replacement of the tower’s awnings and windows.
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