Region fares well at tourism awards

Headshot of Jakeb Waddell
Jakeb WaddellBroome Advertiser
Sightseeing helicopter which flies from the floating base of Horizontal Falls Seaplane Adventures.
Camera IconSightseeing helicopter which flies from the floating base of Horizontal Falls Seaplane Adventures. Credit: The West Australian

A Broome-based adventure tour company is flying high after upsetting some of Perth’s biggest names at a Statewide awards night last week to take out the ceremony’s most prestigious gong.

Horizontal Falls Seaplanes Adventures cleaned up at the WA Tourism Awards on November 11, adding five trophies to an already extensive collection.

While many expected to see newly built Crown Towers claim the top prize, the family-owned business stunned the State when announced as the recipient of the Sir David Brand Award.

Owner Troy Thomas said he was overwhelmed at receiving such a high honour.

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The company, which flies tourists to one of the “greatest natural wonders of the world”, also took out gold medals in the adventure tourism and unique accommodation categories, winning silver for best tourist attraction.

Sister company Swan River Seaplanes also beat Crown Towers to claim best new tourism business. Wilderness camp Kooljaman at Cape Leveque had a busy night too, winning gold for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander tourism division, as well as bronze for unique accommodation. Kununurra-based aviation company Aviair took home three medals, including gold for major tour and transport operators.

Owner Michael McConachy said he was passionate about encouraging more visitors to the North West. “We operate in a stunning part of the world and want more people to come and experience the region,” he said.

Subsidiary companies Helispirit and Bungle Bungle Guided Tours were recognised on the night, taking out silver in adventure tourism and bronze in new tourism business, respectively.

Narlijia Cultural Tours Broome won the silver award for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander tourism, with Willie Creek Pearls taking out bronze for major tour and transport operators and tourism education and training.

The Cable Beach Club Resort and Spa won bronze for business event venues and were recognised as a luxurious sanctuary after being inducted into the luxury accommodation hall of fame.

Kununurra’s hospitality industry fared well too, led by Country Club Resort, which won gold for deluxe accommodation.

The caravan and holiday parks silver award went to Kimberleyland Holiday Park, with the Kimberley Croc Motel clinching the runner-up prize for standard accommodation.

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