Congratulations to the winners of the 2018 Brolga Northern Territory Tourism Awards which were announced at a gala ceremony at the Darwin Convention Centre on Saturday 10 November:
Major Tourist Attraction – Nitmiluk National Park
Nitmiluk National Park is a nationally recognised park rich in Jawoyn culture, featuring a timeless landscape of outstanding natural features. The park, owned by the Jawoyn people, is a key economic driver at the local and regional level and is managed collaboratively with Parks, Wildlife and Heritage.
Tourist Attractions – Katherine Outback Experience
Katherine Outback Experience is the fusion of one man’s love and aptitude for training animals, singing / song writing, and sharing stories about life in outback Australia. The outback show comprises authentic horse-starting and working dog demonstrations, humorous bush-tales and live music to entertain and educate guests about the Territory’s rich pastoral history.
Major Festivals & Events – 2017 Darwin Festival
The 2017 Darwin Festival delivered eighteen ‘hot August nights’ capturing the spirit of the Northern Territory. As Australia’s leading tropical winter major arts festival it delivered a program drawn from the Northern Territory’s Indigenous and multicultural communities, enhanced by contemporary mainstream and fringe acts from around Australia and the world.
Festivals & Events – 2018 Iron Jack Uluru Camel Cup
You can expect two days of outback fun watching the dust fly at the Uluru Camel Cup, with five nail biting qualifying races followed by a Dash for Cash, Plate race and the big Uluru Camel Cup. Off the track there’s plenty to see and do – helicopter flights, Outback Games and Fashions on the Field.
Ecotourism – Trek Larapinta
Trek Larapinta is a passionate local Alice Springs-based trekking operator specialising in small group walking holidays on the Larapinta Trail. Trek Larapinta maintains strong local knowledge of the landscape and continues to build deep connections within the local community through supporting Indigenous enterprises and practicing a genuine ecotourism philosophy.
Cultural Tourism – Bombing of Darwin Harbour Experience
The Bombing of Darwin Harbour Experience was established to leverage the growing interest in military tourism and to foster a greater understanding of what happened when war came to the shores of Australia. It brings to life little known stories by meshing holographic and virtual reality technology with old fashioned narrative to provide a moving account of the Bombing of the Darwin and the courage of many trapped amidst the chaos and devastation.
Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Tourism – Nitmiluk Tours & Cicada Lodge
Nitmiluk Tours is a 100% Indigenous owned tourism operation. With a proud and proven record of Indigenous employment and training, authentic Indigenous culture is showcased through every aspect of operations. The Jawoyn traditional owners offer a range of experiences from active adventure tours, cruises, cultural presentations, and scenic helicopter rides over Nitmiluk Gorge.
Specialised Tourism Services –Uluru Chinese Tour
Uluṟu Chinese Tour is the number one Chinese Tour provider in the Northern Territory and specialises in conducting tour services in Mandarin to domestic and international Mandarin speaking customers travelling to Central Australia. This was a very exciting year for Uluru Chinese Tour bringing over 8,000 passengers to the NT.
Visitor Information Services – Alice Springs Visitor Information Centre
Located in the centre of town, Tourism Central Australia’s Alice Springs Visitor Information Centre offers friendly and fully trained staff and volunteer Ambassadors to provide comprehensive information, booking services and advice to enhance and extend the visitor’s length of stay, encourage dispersal and increase expenditure.
Business Event Venues – Alice Springs Convention Centre
The Alice Springs Convention Centre offers state of the art technology, best practice environmental controls and excellent quality service delivery. With access to some of the most spectacular off-site locations, Alice Springs Convention Centre also offers ideal locations for unconventional business events within the Red Centre.
Destination Marketing – Destination Northern Territory Airnorth
As Australia’s second-longest running airline, Airnorth celebrated their 40th anniversary in 2018. Flying to 17 destinations in the Northern Territory, Airnorth’s campaign was aimed to influence, inspire and educate business and leisure travellers to visit these regions and the attractions and tours on offer.
Major Tour & Transport Operator – AAT Kings
AAT Kings has been showcasing the NT’s experiences and destinations to visitors for more than 30 years. From the renowned icons of Uluru to the wonders of Kakadu, guests are able to select their ideal journey from a collection of 75 Day Tours, Short Breaks and Guided Holidays exploring all major regions, from half day options to extended touring programmes.
Tour & Transport Operator – NT Bird Specialists
NT Bird Specialists create exceptional birdwatching, wildlife & photographic safaris exploring the tropics & outback Australia. Guests seeking endemic, rare & migratory species in biodiversity hotspots are provided with personalised professional services in small groups and tailored special-interest tours.
Adventure Tourism – Uluru Camel Tours
Take the ultimate camel adventure at Uluru Camel Tours in the beating heart of Australia, the largest owner operated camel farm in Australia. Saddle up with Oprah, Ned, Connor or Lazy Dazy and let them take you on a journey to discover the history of camels, the Afghan cameleers and how they played a pivotal role in opening up the outback.
Tourism Restaurants & Catering Services – Cicada Lodge Restaurant at Nitmiluk Gorge
Cicada Restaurant combines exceptional Australian food and wine experiences with world-class nature and wildlife. Spoilt for choice, visitors can indulge in 5 star service on the Nabilil Dreaming Sunset Cruise against a backdrop of stunning scenic beauty or at Cicada’s nightly chefs table, where local and native ingredients showcase the unique provenance of the region.
Tourism Wineries, Distilleries & Breweries – Red Centre Devil from Earth Sanctuary
There is no better way to promote a region than highlighting its unique produce. Family owned and operated, Earth Sanctuary developed their own bush tucker brew appropriately named Red Centre Devil, a smooth and refreshing lager infused with the native peach Quandong sourced from the Earth Sanctuary and surrounding desert regions of the Australian Outback.
Self-Contained Accommodation – Darwin Executive Studio
Darwin Executive Studio is a 1 bedroom executive studio situated right in the heart of Darwin City. Operating successfully for 9 years, this studio offers all the conveniences of the "home away from home" including the use of a free vehicle.
Standard Accommodation – Palms City Resort
The design makes Palms City Resort unique for Darwin city accommodation. With its mix of low rise hotel rooms, bungalows and villas all surrounded in lush tropical gardens the resorts marketing message “Just a little touch of paradise…in the heart of Darwin City” is apparent the moment you view the property from the street.
Deluxe Accommodation – Crowne Plaza Alice Springs Lasseters
Crowne Plaza Alice Springs Lasseters is surrounded by the spectacular Central Australia landscape and scenery. The 4 ½ star rated property is the perfect option for accommodation that invites people to kick back and revel in the beauty of their surroundings, while enjoying all the resort has to offer.
Luxury Accommodation – Cicada Lodge
Cicada Lodge delivers a luxury travel experience like no other! Anticipatory service staying in elegant, quality accommodation with unique access to the majesty of Nitmiluk Gorge and a truly authentic interaction with the unique Indigenous culture.
New Tourism Product – North Australia Yacht Support
North Australia Yacht Support offers a full shore support service in Darwin for visiting luxury, professionally crewed, recreational vessels. Together, Ayla and Toby Wharton hold more than 30 years Super Yacht Industry experience and assist visitors with all aspects of superyacht management from guest experience through to maintenance projects.
Excellence in Food Tourism – Crazy Acres Mango Farm and Café
Crazy Acres is a family run, mango farm specialising in value adding to the iconic fruit and bringing the "paddock to plate" experience to visitors. With an ever increasing range of mango products throughout the menu, freezer and shop, there is something to suit everyone.
Emerging NT Aboriginal Tourism Award – Karrke Aboriginal Cultural Experience & Tour
Karrke Aboriginal Cultural Experience and Tour is owned and operated by Traditional Owner Christine Breaden. Visitors get to experience traditional language, bush tucker and medicine, the making of spears, boomerangs, music sticks and jewellery on a one hour tour in the Wanmarra Community.
Visitor Experience Award – Katherine Outback Experience
Katherine Outback Experience is a raw and authentic tourist attraction providing an insight into life on cattle stations through real horse-starting and working dog demonstrations, live music and humorous bush stories. Visitors are offered refreshments and invited to interact with the station animals including the water buffalo.
George Dunne Award for Outstanding Contribution to Tourism – Ken Hart
Ken Hart has successfully developed a range of very successful tourism businesses, none more so than Northern Territory Adventure Tours. In 2011 Ken retired, but just like John Farnham is back for a farewell tour with his current company Adventure Rentals operating out of Alice Springs and Darwin.
Skal International Darwin Tourism Employee – Lisa Evans
As the Sales and Marketing Manager at Uluru Camel Tours, Lisa Evans is passionate about tourism, community spirit and event management. Delivering exceptional customer service, Lisa showcases the Central Australian region to the world and shares her knowledge and love of camels with all visitors.
Department Trade Business & Innovation - Business Growth Award – The Darwin History and Wartime Experience
The Darwin History and Wartime Experience brings to life Darwin's rich history and vibrant culture. Owner David Leck will help you relive the history of Darwin - from the early explorers, to the WW2 bombing of the city through to Cyclone Tracy and beyond - all enjoyed from the back of a comfortably modified WW2 army truck!
First Time Entrants – Joint winners – Uluru Segway Tours and Anglers Choice
Uluru Segway Tours offer a full base tour of majestic Uluru, by Segway. Get up close and personal with the picturesque landscape, learn about the flora and fauna, ancient Aboriginal rock art and immerse yourself in the history and culture that is Uluru.
Anglers Choice Fishing Safaris offer personalised one day or multi day fully inclusive fishing charter packages at Dundee Beach. Their fleet of custom built boats are the perfect vessels to take you barramundi fishing up the rivers or out wide on the bluewater.
Tourism Minister’s Perpetual Trophy – Rick Murray
Rick Murray has been actively involved at the coal face of nature based tourism for over 30 years, jointly pioneering experience based minimal impact tours with Odyssey Tours & Safaris. Rick has served on a number of boards including Tourism NT, Kakadu Tourism Consultative Committee, Kakadu National Park Board of Management, Nitmiluk Tours and Ecotourism Australia. His company Middlestar is currently providing mentoring services to several Aboriginal owned small businesses in the NT.