Thursday, 22 February 2018

That’s a wrap on AIME 2018

The Asia-Pacific Incentives and Meetings Expo (AIME) 2018, Melbourne, Australia concludes its 26th show

The buyers and sellers of the Asia-Pacific Incentives and Meetings Expo (AIME) have concluded two jam-packed days of networking and business meetings which included 25 new exhibitors to the show floor.

On the evening of day one, the popular Networking Hour saw the Northern Territory Convention Bureau host delegates on their stand with uniquely themed Territorian-styled beverages and canapes, such as lemon myrtle-infused feta with green ants and crocodile kabana.

Long-time exhibitor Shahnaz Bakhshay, Director of Sales, TFE Hotels, said that AIME had delivered a lot of great quality buyers this year – helping them secure sound leads.

“AIME 2018 has delivered on quality buyers for us; we have had some great appointments with buyers who have significant budgets. We’ve been able to showcase all the latest developments with our properties. If only half of these leads come off, we’ll be having a terrific year,” said Ms Bakhshay.

Whilst AIME has enjoyed 26 years, it still attracts a number of new buyers and sellers every time, with 2018 seeing an increase in the number of ‘first-timer exhibitors’ on the show floor.

For the first time, QuizzaMe Australia, showcased their interactive trivia product - that has no pens or paper in sight (just wireless buzzes) on their stand.

“As a first-time exhibitor we are very happy with the level of interest and have made lots of new connections. It’s been a chance to talk about our product in the events space. It’s been really easy, running demo games and bringing some fun to AIME.

“We’ve met some great people, who are our perfect target market and we are very excited about all the potential new business. We're already looking forward to next year,” said Quiz Master Paul.

Highlights from day two included:
  • Tourism New Zealand, held their annual VIP breakfast on the 100% Pure New Zealand stand with approximately 120 attendees. They revealed insights from their in-depth report: Art of Excellence at Association Events
  • Rentertainment wowed delegates with their VR Pit Stop Challenge, a custom-built virtual reality experience specifically built for the Formula 1. The game puts two people head-to-head testing speed and accuracy 
  • Cvent’s Express Challenge invited delegates to create an event, launch a website and print a badge in record time. The quickest time recorded at AIME was 9 minutes and 30 seconds. The current global record is 6 minutes and 9 seconds
  • During last night’s Networking Hour, the AIME community acknowledged Jo-Anne Kelleway, Founder of Info Salons, as this year’s 2018 Industry Person of the Year, for her significant contributions and innovations to the events industry

This is the last AIME managed by Reed Travel Exhibitions for show owners Melbourne Convention Bureau.

Travelodge to Build Huge Hotel in Vietnam

Travelodge’s first property in Vietnam will be a huhe 2,497 room hotel debuting under its new upper midscale brand, Skye by Travelodge.

Skye by Travelodge Arena Nha Trang is set to open in 2020.

It will be the largest property in the company’s hotel management portfolio, according to Wigley Burt, chairman of Travelodge Asia.

Australian Bowl-Riding Championships

The annual Australian Bowl Riding Championships (ABC) is the first true Nationals skateboard competition for any discipline within skateboarding in Australia. 

This all-inclusive Australian event welcomes skateboarders from every skill level and age, to sign up and compete for huge cash and prizes.


Empire Park Bar Beach, Merewether Heights,  NSW, Australia

For more information:


Stone Town
Tanzania is not only known as one of the best African destinations for wildlife and safaris. It also has fascinating, exotic islands, beaches, and resort hotels ideal for a relaxing vacation. Zanzibar s brilliant white beaches lapped by the warm turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean provide the perfect place to relax, soak up the sun and take a break from some busy sightseeing. The beaches in Zanzibar are a paradise, interspersed with picturesque fishing villages, where the people live a simple way of life, unchanged over the years. There are more than 25 fantastic beaches in Zanzibar, and some are so peaceful and remote that the only noise breaking the silence is likely to be the ocean.

Zanzibar is a semi autonomous region of Tanzania in East Africa. Zanzibar is an archipelago made up of Zanzibar and Pemba Islands, and several islets. It is located in the Indian Ocean, about 25 miles from the Tanzanian coast. Zanzibar Island is 60 miles long and 20 miles wide, occupying a total area of approximately 650 square miles. It is characterised by beautiful sandy beaches with fringing coral reefs, and the magic of historic Stone Town, said to be the only functioning ancient town in East Africa.

Hotel Accommodations

Zanzibar has excellent hotels, modern and traditional, both in Stone Town and on the beaches. We always recommend that visitors combine a short stay in Stone Town to explore the history and architecture of the isles cultural heart, with a stay on one of the beautiful Indian Ocean beaches. The east coast of Zanzibar Island features several establishments on the beach, ranging from small and intimate properties to larger resort outfits. Further afield, great lodges can be found on Pemba and Mafia, and smaller islands such as Chumbe and Mnemba.

What to do in Zanzibar?

Stone Town: This tour takes you through fabled Stone Town, where history appears to stand still. With visits to the House of Wonders, the Palace Museum People s Palace, Dr Livingstone s House and the Arab Fort amongst others, it is a fascinating look at the essence of Zanzibar. You will see Zanzibar is bustling market, winding alleyways, ornately carved and studded doors, two cathedrals and countless mosques. A trip to the site of Sultan Barghash s harem at Marahubi should also be included and rounds off an insight into Zanzibar is huge history and vibrant culture.

Spice Plantations: The history of Zanzibar would be incomplete without the cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, pepper and many other spices which brought the Sultans of Oman and the beginnings of the infamous slave trade. They can be seen in the plantations just outside Zanzibar town, and a good tour includes opportunities to dazzle the senses with fresh spices. A detailed description is given about a variety of spices, and their uses in cooking and cosmetics.

Jozani Forest: The Jozani Natural Forest Reserve is located in the central east region of Zanzibar island and is home to the rare Red Colobus Monkey, which is endemic to Zanzibar. These monkeys are full of character, and roam freely. They can also be seen at very close quarters just outside the reserve's perimeter and are incredibly photogenic. Jozani is home to other species including Syke's monkey's, small buck and bush pigs.

North Coast: Tours to the unspoiled north coast always end up at Ras Nungwi, a sleepy fishing village on the northern tip of Zanzibar island. It is the dhow building capital of Zanzibar, so you will be able to see the traditional methods of dhow construction in action. This area of Zanzibar has some fantastic beaches and nearby coral reefs which are ideal for diving and snorkelling. The local villagers have built a turtle sanctuary where injured turtles and other marine animals are nursed back to health before being released back into the warm waters of the Indian Ocean.

Kizimkazi Mosque & Dolphin Tour: Situated on the southern point of the island, Kizimkazi fishing village is home to several schools of bottle-nosed dolphins which can often be sighted following a short boat trip from the village. If you are lucky, you may be able to swim quite close to the dolphins which can be a very rewarding experience. Kizimkazi is also the site of a 12th century mosque, the earliest evidence of Islam in East Africa, and is thus worth a visit for both natural and cultural reasons.

Prison Island: Once the site of a gaol for misbehaving slaves, the island lies just off the old stone town. It is fringed with a beautiful coral reef, ideal for snorkelling, and has a lovely white beach for sun-bathing. It is also home to a family of giant tortoises, imported from the Seychelles in the late 19th century. This island is ideal for a day-trip with refreshments available throughout the day. It also has a small restaurant where you can enjoy freshly caught fish.

Safari Blue Dhow cruise: Safari Blue is like but more than a day out adventure and the classic Dolphin Tour. This excursion ideally permits the clients to explore the natural environment of explicitly Menai Bay. The mangrove, Baobab tree, white sand banks. The clients enjoy the tranquility of cruising by sailing in one of Safari Blue's traditional hand built wooden dhows.  This is peaceful way to end your memorable day. Your will have your sea food served at Kwale island.

Diving Zanzibar: Zanzibar is reputed to have some of the best diving in the world, and the coral reef structures that surround Unguja and Pemba ensure that the marine life is abundant. Good visibility 20-60 metres and a year-round average water temperature of 27 c ensure that you enjoy your Zanzibar diving experience, and also present an ideal opportunity for learning to dive or upgrading your diving qualification. There are several dive centres on the island and most run courses using the international PADI system of diver education. This way, the certification you gain in Zanzibar can be used anywhere in the world.

Diving in Zanzibar is not restricted to beginners. Experienced scuba divers can enjoy exciting wall dives, night dives and drift dives. In deeper waters, lush coral gardens often stretch as far as the eye can see, and large gamefish (barracuda, kingfish, tuna and wahoo) hunt together with large Napoleonic wrasse, graceful manta rays and sharks. Shallower waters are the playground of tropical fish, including a huge variety of Indo-Pacific marine fauna.

For more information about these theme activities, please contact Mr. Gadi Mbuya at contact

Qantas Dreamliner Emily Kame Kngwarreye

In celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Australia, Qantas launched the latest aircraft in their Flying Art Series, Qantas Dreamliner Emily Kame Kngwarreye.

Qantas acknowledges the First Nations peoples of Australia as the continuing custodians and Traditional Owners of the land on which we live and work.

From canvas to aircraft

This unique Qantas Dreamliner livery was inspired by 1991 artwork ‘Yam Dreaming’, painted by the late artist, Emily Kame Kngwarreye.

The painting captures the essence of the yam plant, an important symbol in Emily’s Dreamtime story, and an important food source in her home region of Utopia, 230 kilometres north east of Alice Springs.

Yam Dreaming has been conceptualised by design studio, Balarinji, and for just the second time in our history, the iconic tail is included in the design, with our trademark red tail adapted to match the earthy red tones and white dotting technique of the original piece.

About the artist

A senior member of the Anmatyerre clan, ceremonial leader and a custodian of Dreaming sites in Alhalkere, Emily Kame Kngwarreye was introduced to art late in life through a government funded education program at Utopia, and in 1978 became a founding member of the Utopia Women’s Batik Group. Emily began painting on canvas in 1988 and over the next eight years quickly garnered attention for her remarkable body of work that embodied her deep spiritual and cultural connections to her country and community.

In 2008, the National Museum of Australia curated an expansive exhibition of Emily's work, featuring over 120 pieces. Visit the National Museum of AustraliaOpens external site in a new window to learn more.

The Qantas Flying Art Series

For more than 20 years Qantas has been proud to bring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and stories to the world through our Flying Art Series. Since 1994, they've commissioned and displayed five striking Indigenous liveries on Boeing 747s, 737s and now a 787-9. Leading Indigenous-owned design agency, Balarinji, has developed all of the works in the series in collaboration with Aboriginal artists and their representatives.

Qantas Reconciliation Action Plan

As part of their Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), Qantas is proud to promote Indigenous culture and opportunity. Learn more about the Qantas RAP.

Dubai Miracle Garden is Now Open!

  • Guinness World Records Largest Flower Structure

Miracle Garden is one of a kind in the region and in the world for such a unique display and extravagant outdoor recreational destination.

Dubai Miracle Garden provides state of the art services and facilities including open parking, VIP parking, sitting areas, prayer room, toilet blocks, ablution facility, security room, first aid room, carts for handicapped visitors, retails and commercial kiosk and all other related services available to facilitate visitors.

Dubai Miracle Garden
Al Barsha South 3, Barsha, Dubailand Area - Dubai

Light Up Newcastle

The Newcastle Rotary Clubs invite you to join in a special event to celebrate Chinese New Year and Light up Newcastle with red lanterns.

The challenge set for this year is to "be a gift to the world" and the Rotary Clubs will provide a gift to seafarers visiting the Port of Newcastle and celebrating the maritime heritage of the City.

The Mission provides sailers with a 'home away from home' at the Seafarers Centre in Wickham. The lantern walk will raise money for a new upgrade to their kitchen.

Newcastle's Maritime Centre will also be a beneficiary of the event. Money raised will assist them to build a new entrance to its public cafe on the foreshore. 

Newcastle City Council and Hunter Development Corporation have supported the event and it will be part of the Summer Tourism Campaign.

SATURDAY 24 FEBRUARY 2018, Newcastle, NSW, Australia

For more information:

Wednesday, 21 February 2018


With a stellar line up featuring over 250 international and domestic brands, FREE seminars and expert advice, and live performances, theEssential Baby & Toddler Show, returns to Brisbane on Friday 16 – Sunday 18 March, 2018 at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Celebrating 10 years in 2018, the Essential Baby & Toddler Show is Australia’s favourite event for new and expectant parents. The event is a one-of-a-kind show offering the hottest new products from around the world. Catch a seminar and receive free health advice from Australia’s leading experts including Pinky McKay and bring the kids along to see live performances and meet and greets with Hey Duggee.

Best of all, tickets to attend are FREE if you register online before 5pm AEST Thursday 15 March, 2018. Register now for your FREE ticket at

Attendees can look forward to a FREE can of Blackmores Toddler Milk Drink*, when they scan their ticket at the Blackmores Wellbeing Zone (while stocks last), as well the opportunity to have a personalised Naturopathic Advisory session, courtesy of Blackmores.

The Essential Baby & Toddler show features a line-up of the most reputable and exclusive baby and toddler products from around the world, with over 250 brands to choose from including Bil-Oil, Bugaboo, Philips AVENT, Ecostore, Baby Zen, Infasecure, Tiny Love, Rafferty’s Garden, Love to Dream, Maxi-Cosi and more.

Don’t miss the Seminar Series where professionals discuss the ins-and-outs of happy and safe parenting. Headlining the seminars is Pinky McKay, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, author of best-selling books Sleeping like a Baby, Parenting by Heart and Toddler Tactics and a household name amongst breastfeeding mothers with her range of snacks, Boobie Bikkies. Pinky McKay will take to the stage twice a day with her top tips on sleep, love & your baby’s baby brain and useful toddler tactics for ‘making magic from mayhem’.

In the need of expert advice? Check out the Advice Hub where professionals from a range of disciplines will be offering free one-on-one consultations on everything from baby basics, feeding, sleeping, oral care, emotional wellbeing, birth choices and best practice safety recommendations.

Would you know how to recognise and respond to your sick or injured child, with confidence? The Show offers 90 minute First Aid sessions by Mater Mothers’. Limited spaces available so booking on the website is essential.

The Essential Baby & Toddler Show is a great place to learn more about pregnancy, babies and toddlers, pick up some great tips and get your hands on the latest and greatest goodies. Bring the kids for a fun day out with the family, try and buy the products from industry-leading brands and receive expert consultations at the 2018 Essential Baby & Toddler Show Brisbane.

WHAT: The Essential Baby & Toddler Show Brisbane
WHERE & WHEN: Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, Friday 16 – Sunday 18 March, 2018

Get your free ticket here, check out the Essential Baby & Toddler Show social media channels and sign up for the e-newsletter.

Twitter: @BabyToddlerShow
Instagram: @BabyandToddlerShow

Kids Ski Free at Kuma Lodge

The quest to create a ski lodge in the heart of a traditional Japanese ski village that would entice guests who are passionate about world-class snow conditions has proved to be a success.

Owner operators of Kuma Lodge, located in the heart of Madarao ski area, are very satisfied with the five-star rated reviews on Trip Advisor and the number of guests who say they have rebooked for next winter.

The collective vision of the owners was to blend traditional elements of Japanese architecture with Western comforts in the guest rooms and lounge areas. Another key element that has added to the success of the Kuma Lodge project was the appointment of a Japanese manager Taka-San who oversees the day-to-day requirements of the snow enthusiasts from Australia, Europe and America.

He has had an enormous amount of positive feedback which has convinced the owners of the lodge Madarao ski area will attract even more Western skiers and snowboarders next winter.

A special offer for March is 30% off the regular Kuma Lodge room tariffs plus adult guests are offered low-cost ski lift tickets and children are Free to use the resort’s ski lifts.

One option is Five nights was $1,190 now $830 (save $360 per person), another Five nights was $1,605 now $1125 (save $480 per person). Code Mar30

Conditons All rooms available subject to availability

For more information go to
or contact for any further questions

RAMIN KARIMLOO with special guest ANNA O'BYRNE

Melbourne Wednesday 20 June 
Sydney Saturday 23 June
Tickets on Sale Friday 23 February

“His falsetto sung prayer Bring Him Home is sublime.” - USA Associated Press

Ramin Karimloo, Broadway & West End music theatre star, will tour Australia for the first time in June 2018 for a strictly limited season, with special guest Anna O’Byrne, star of Australia’s My Fair Lady

Ramin Karimloo, a Tony Award nominee, is known as one of the most formidable talents in music theatre today.  Ramin has played starring roles including Jean Valjean, Enjolras and Marius in Les Misérables and The Phantom and Raoul in The Phantom of the Opera.  Ramin was handpicked by Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber to portray the title role in his sequel to The Phantom of the OperaLove Never Dies.  He originated this role that won him the prestigious Theatregoer’s Choice Award and the award for Best Actor in a Musical.  He won the award for the Best Actor category for the prestigious Viewers' Choice Theatre Awards in 2011, as well as nominated for a Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Musical.  Ramin has also starred as Tom in Murder Ballad at the Arts Theatre, London, Che in Evita at Vancouver Opera, Archibald Craven in The Secret Garden at the Lincoln Centre and Prince of Broadway (World Premier) at the Umeda Arts Theatre, Japan

Ramin played the role of Enjolras in the 25th Anniversary Concert of Les Misérables at London’s O2 Arena in 2010 where it continues to be one of the most widely viewed shows in PBS history.  In 2011 Ramin played The Phantom for three performances in the 25th Anniversary Production of The Phantom of the Opera at the Royal Albert Hall.  Additionally, he performed the title song, Music of The Night, during Broadways 25th Anniversary Concert of The Phantom of the Opera

From November 2011 to March 2012 Ramin returned to Les Misérables to play the lead role of Jean Valjean in London for which he won the 2013 Theatregoers' Choice Award for Best Takeover in a Role.  Ramin recently starred in Anastasia on Broadway to high acclaim.
Anna O'Byrne, Australia's leading lady, will be joining Ramin on stage.  Anna was acclaimed for her portrayal of Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady, directed by Julie Andrews, for which she won a Helpmann Award.

Australian born and now based in London, Anna has established an international career spanning opera, theatre, concert, and film.  Anna was chosen by Andrew Lloyd Webber to create the role of Christine Daaé in the Australian production of Love Never Dies.  For this performance Anna was nominated for Sydney Theatre and Green Room Awards and the production was filmed and released in cinemas internationally by Universal Pictures.

Anna was then invited to make her West End debut as Christine in The Phantom of the Opera.  She created the role of Jenny Lind in Cameron Mackintosh’s Barnum, and followed this in Robert Allan Ackerman’s Strangers on a Train.  In 2015 Anna played Anne Egerman in A Little Night Music as part of the show’s 40th anniversary celebrations.  She debuted with English National Opera in their landmark production of Sweeney Todd.  Anna became the first actress to perform Christine in The Phantom of the Opera in Russia.  Anna then performed the role of Maria in West Side Story in Australia, before returning to the UK to star as Sarah Brown in Guys and Dolls.

Following Anna’s acclaimed success as Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady, Anna starred as Laura in Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Woman in White on London's West End.


“A really popular…Phantom I have to say. He’s just great.”  - Andrew Lloyd Webber

“Gleb, the musical’s (Anastasia) autocratic-yet-conflicted Bolshevik, played with a dark dreaminess and clarion pipes by Ramin Karimloo.” - Variety

“When he sings Bring Him Home, his purity and hushed fervor lifts the production
(Les Miserables) to a higher level.” - USA Daily News

There’s not a gesture, not a head bob out of place. At the end of the day, he brings the most lustre to this stirring revival”. –
Entertainment Weekly


"Anna has a voice that's just gorgeous - her top range is phenomenal, and she's a wonderful actress."
Dame Julie Andrews

“Anna O’Byrne sings with enchanting beauty, and crisp diction as Eliza Doolittle” - The Age

“O’Byrne is simply radiant, and almost everything in her performance is perfectly judged — she’s funny, moving, and resilient” 
Daily Review

“Anna O'Byrne is utterly lovely as Christine, her crystal-clear soprano soaring in a glorious rendition of the show's title song” –
The Telegraph



MELBOURNE:                Wednesday 20 June 2018
Where:                          Arts Centre Melbourne, Hamer Hall
Tickets:                 or 1300 182 183

SYDNEY:                        Saturday 23 June 2018
Where:                          State Theatre, Sydney
Tickets:                or 1300 723 038