Travel Blog

Read all about our journeys, experiences and observations from the team at Gilpin Travel.

19 Jul

Meetings Trade Show for Conference & Incentive Organisers

1311044747_mel snell.JPG22-23 June. Rotorua Energy Events Centre - Tales from the desk of Mel Snell Gilpin Travel Events

In June I was invited to attend the annual ‘meetings’ conference as a hosted buyer.  This expo is geared toward the meetings, incentives and conference  market and I was so excited to attend, being my first time. With over 200 hosted buyers it was a privilege to represent Gilpin Travel Events and a wonderful  opportunity to network with the industry elite.

The event was held over 2 days at the Rotorua Energy Events Centre, with  suppliers from all over New Zealand showcasing  products in an expo setting. Buyers are required to attended appointments every 15 minutes, which allows enough time to get a general overview of products on  offer.

Day one started with a sit down breakfast in which we heard from four key note speakers who ignited our passion and geared us up for a productive couple of days.  The atmosphere was very positive and my goal was to learn as much as I could about the various venues, accommodation and activities that our country has to offer.  I was blown away by the huge array on offer and came away with a much  larger knowledge base and a suitcase full of brochures to boot!

With a large contingency of Australian buyers it was great to chat with them about the challengers they face in the Australian market and to hear their thoughts on NZ product offerings (all of which was positive).

I was lucky to be accommodated at the Princess Gate hotel which is very close to the events centre.  This is a beautiful 19th century hotel that has been masterly restored to its former glory.  Two large fire places in the foyer as you walk in  create a cosy and very welcome sight.

Over the three nights we where  treated to a busy and fun social programme that included an Powhiri in the Redwood forest with mulled wine, an Ali Barba themed pool party, Skyline Gondola and Luge rides (in the dark!),  a stunning  formal dinner at the Blue Baths (one of my absolute  favourite places in Rotorua), and a “shuffle” gala dinner complete with bands, DJ, amazing laser lighting and a touching tribute to Christchurch. 

I left Rotorua on Friday afternoon exhausted but bursting with idea’s, fantastic  memories and new found friends.  I can’t wait to implement some of the  learning's  on our next planned event.