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  Home > Asia News > Christchurch, New Zealand Increases Presence at AIME 2006

Christchurch, New Zealand Increases Presence at AIME 2006

Christchurch, New Zealand is increasing its presence at AIME 2006 as delegate numbers from Australia increase and the city looks to attract more international business events.

Statistics released recently by Christchurch & Canterbury Convention Bureau (CCCB), show a 35% increase in the number of delegates from Australia, compared with the same quarter in 2004. Christchurch achieved a record 217 conferences and 16,941 delegates in the third quarter to September 2005.

With Australians making up 20% of Christchurch’s business tourist visitor numbers, the city is keen to increase these numbers and attract more business delegates from around the world. Christchurch is ranked 23rd in the Asia Pacific and Middle East region, according to the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) figures for 2004.

Christchurch will be represented by eight exhibitors at AIME 2006 including: Christchurch & Canterbury Convention Bureau (CCCB); Hotel Grand Chancellor; Outrigger at Clearwater Resort; Christchurch Convention Centre; Rydges hotel group; Millennium hotel group; InterContinental Hotels Group; and Heritage hotel group.

CCCB will showcase its new delegate rebate scheme (DRS), the first of its type in New Zealand. The scheme allows a grant of NZD$20 per delegate for large conference events requiring 200 accommodation rooms or more in Christchurch.

“Amongst the international network of convention bureaux, Christchurch is recognised as New Zealand’s leading-edge conference city,” said CCCB General Manager, Annette Pendergast.

“Christchurch Convention Centre is New Zealand’s largest purpose-built Convention Centre, linked by airbridge to the city’s main performing arts venue, the Christchurch Town Hall. The Convention Centre is extremely adaptable, suited to gatherings of 10 to 2200, located closed to more than 2000 central city hotel rooms, and all within a 10 minute walk. The Centre recently introduced a wireless hotspot service, enabling fast speed online access.

“With the local hotel infrastructure, off-site dining attractions and the access through an international airport, convention business is naturally drawn to our city. Delegates have the potential to extend their stay to holiday in our country, accompanied by partners and family,” she said.

Jo Robinson, AFMEA, a familiar face at AIME, will be attending AIME 2006 to represent Vbase Venue Management Group Ltd, formerly NCC (NZ) Ltd. She will be representing four venues: Christchurch Convention Centre, Christchurch Town Hall, Westpac Centre for Sport and Entertainment and Jade Stadium, an outdoor arena with covered seating for 35,000 people.

The Westpac Centre was ranked 10th in the world for venues under 10,000 seats for gross ticket sales in 2005, by industry magazine Venues Today. It marked the culmination of a sustained effort to encourage promoters to bring large acts to Christchurch and saw the venue become the highest ranked venue outside North America.

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