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‘Outdoors is our strength'

Destination Tweed CEO Bill Tatchell says our best tourism assets are still outdoors, despite a bit of rain.
Destination Tweed CEO Bill Tatchell says our best tourism assets are still outdoors, despite a bit of rain. Blainey Woodham

RECENT flooding has split opinions from tourism gurus on how to manage bad weather events.

While Gold Coast Dreamtime Resorts operator Garry McKenzie is pushing for more indoor tourist attractions, new Destination Tweed CEO Bill Tatchell believes the Tweed thrives on its natural beauty and needn't be scared by a little rain.

Mr McKenzie said the latest storms inundating Queensland had drawn nationwide publicity and may have deterred domestic visitors.

"Everyone acknowledges the floods and cyclone in Queensland last year hurt our tourist reputation and it takes time to get back from that, and the latest heavy weather event doesn't help our business," Mr McKenzie said.

"It's no secret weather can affect bookings, which is why we need to expand the range of tourist activities here and factor in more indoor options."

But Mr Tatchell said it was unnecessary to start planning big-money infrastructure in an area renowned for the great outdoors.

"Being a nature-based destination in the Green Cauldron, our experiences are on the beaches, on the water, in the national parks," Mr Tatchell said.

"It's our strength. You can't argue to invest on a lot of indoor infrastructure when it's not necessarily an area we want to compete in.

"When the rain makes it difficult we make it work.

"We've got the art gallery, the cinemas, the shopping centres and great little townships.

"There's no major infrastructure on the long-term horizon."

Topics:  bill tatchell destination tweed



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