Entrants & Results
Winners and Finalists
Winners and Finalists of the Victorian Tourism Awards are determined by achieving a score of 75% or above.
The winner is the highest scoring entrant in each category.
Hall of Fame is awarded to an entrant that has won the same category over 3 consecutive years.
2012 Tourism Award winners
- 01. Major Tourist Attractions
- 02. Tourist Attractions
- 04. Festivals & Events
- 05. Ecotourism
- 06. Cultural Tourism
- 08.Specialised Tourism Services
- 09. Visitor Information Services
- 10. Business Tourism
- 11. Major Tour & Transport Operators
- 12. Tour & Transport Operators
- 13. Adventure Tourism
- 14. Destination Marketing
- 15. Tourism Restaurants & Catering Services
- 16. Tourism Wineries, Distilleries & Breweries
- 17. Caravan & Holiday Parks
- 18. Hosted Accommodation
- 19. Unique Accommodation
- 21. Standard Accommodation
- 22. Deluxe Accommodation
- 23. Luxury Accommodation
- 24. New Tourism Business
- 26. Qantas Award for Excellence in Sustainable Tourism
- 27. Outstanding Contribution by an Individual
- 28. Tourism Education and Training
- 29. Young Achievers Encouragement Award
- 30. Backpacker Accommodation
- 31. Young Achievers Award
- 32. Outstanding Contribution by Volunteers
- Minister's Encouragement Award
01. Major Tourist Attractions
A visit to Melbourne Museum is a rich, surprising insight into life in Victoria. We show you Victoria’s intriguing permanent collections and bring you brilliant temporary exhibitions from near and far. You’ll see our natural environment, our cultures and our history through different perspectives.
Inside you’ll find a range of galleries, discovery centres, documentaries and a café, gift shop and theatre.
02. Tourist Attractions
Entering the bathing area is like stepping into another world, a sanctuary where the mind and body are calmed by the steam, soothing aroma and the sound of running water. It’s a place where time is forgotten and lingering is part of the code of harmony……
An hour’s drive South of Melbourne on the beautiful Mornington Peninsula natural hot mineral waters are flowing from deep underground and into the pools and private baths at Peninsula Hot Springs. Bathe and relax at the Spa Dreaming Centre and dine in the café at this tranquil ecotourism attraction.
Finalist: The Enchanted Maze Garden
Finalist: Queen Victoria Market
Finalist: Phillip Island Chocolate Factory
Finalist: Maru Koala and Animal Park
Finalist: Beechworth Honey Experience
04. Festivals & Events
Queen Victoria Market is the heart and soul of Melbourne. Eat, shop, explore and discover your way through our iconic food halls and heritage Sheds where the banter is as fresh as the produce. Or simply soak up the atmosphere of the largest open-air market in the Southern Hemisphere.
There’s no place like our Market. It’s an experience that engages all the senses.
Finalist: La Dolce Vita
Finalist: Sand Sculpting Australia- Frankston Waterfront
Finalist: Fun4Kids Festival
Moonraker Dolphin Swims is Australia’s most awarded Eco Adventure Company specialising in Dolphin and Seal swimming and sightseeing adventures for over 25 years on the picturesque Mornington Peninsula.
Join a 3 hour snorkel adventure with resident Bottlenose Dolphins, swim alongside cheeky Australian Fur Seals, explore underwater marine parks filled with colourful fish and join the search for weedy sea dragons.
Or, embark on a private luxury adventure aboard the Moonraker, where you can see the very best of Port Phillip Bay. See wild dolphins, cross the famous entry to Port Phillip Bay ‘The Rip’ and a visit to the Popes Eye Marine Park.
06. Cultural Tourism
At Bendigo’s Central Deborah Gold Mine you can explore the hidden underground tunnels of a real gold mine that operated during the gold rush boom of the 1900s. Descending to the depths of Bendigo, you are sure to catch gold fever on the famous Mine Experience Tour (61 metres underground), the exciting Underground Adventure Tour (85 metres underground) or Australia’s deepest underground mine tour, Nine Levels of Darkness(228 metres underground).
Finalist: Echuca Paddlesteamers
08.Specialised Tourism Services
Travellers Aid Australia is a not-for-profit with a 99-year history. Since 1916, we’ve supported travellers by providing simple, practical travel-related support and aid that helps them travel independently and confidently, no matter what their background.
Their mission is to assist travellers at their point of need, and to ensure that they reach their destination safely and confidently.
Finalist: Leisure Options
09. Visitor Information Services
Strategically located on the stunning Frankston Waterfront, the Frankston Visitor Information Centre provides quality information and retailing which complements the Mornington Peninsula region.
The Centre provides a central point for a range of ticketing, booking and community services encompassing a wide range of customer needs encouraging visitors to explore the vibrant, urban waterfront destinations in Victoria where arts, nature and cultural experiences connect.
Finalist: Phillip Island and Bass Coast Visitor Information Centre Network
Finalist: Victoria’s High Country
Finalist: Bendigo Visitor Centre
Finalist: Geelong Visitor Information Centres
Finalist: Greater Shepparton Visitor Information Centre
10. Business Tourism
Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC) is situated in the heart of Melbourne on the banks of the Yarra River in South Wharf and is Australia’s largest convention and exhibition facility.
MCEC works closely with key business partners to attract important business events to Victoria to enhance tourism and the growth of the state.
Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre connects people with everything needed for a successful event offering versatile spaces, up-to-date technology, food and wine and staff with the skills and experience to bring it all together.
Finalist: Mantra Lorne
11. Major Tour & Transport Operators
V/Line is Australia’s largest regional public transport operator. In 2014 -15 more than 15.04 million train and coach passenger trips were taken.
V/Line branded coach services connect with the rail network and serve regional Victorian communities where trains do not operate. Some coach services also travel to South Australia, New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory. Private sector coach operators provide all V/Line coach services.
Finalist: Searoad Ferries
12. Tour & Transport Operators
12 Apostles Helicopters, on Victoria’s Great Ocean Road, offers you a unique opportunity to see the 12 Apostles, Shipwreck Coast and Port Campbell National Park from the air. Established in 2000, 12 Apostles Helicopters is the Great Ocean Roads’ longest running scenic flight business. With the newest fleet of luxury helicopters in Australia we are focused on maintaining our 100% safety record. 12 Apostles Helicopters offers the best value in scenic flights of the Apostles due to our unrivalled location.
13. Adventure Tourism
Finalist: Trees Adventure
Finalist: Global Ballooning – Melbourne and Yarra Valley Balloon flights
Finalist: Auswalk Walking Holidays
Finalist: Skydive the Beach Melbourne
Finalist: Bogong Horseback Adventures
Finalist: Lake Mountain Alpine Resort
Finalist: Peninsula Stand Up Paddles – Lessons, Tours and Hire
14. Destination Marketing
The ‘Discover Your Own Backyard’ campaign was developed by Destination Melbourne and local councils to educate and educate residents about things to see and do in their area. Domestically, visiting friends and relatives (VFR) is the largest motivating factor for people visiting Melbourne.
With the help of local councils are building community pride in residents and encouraging dispersal and yield. Discover Your Own Backyard was built on the understanding that the host (the resident) has the greatest influence over visitor behaviour. If we can educate the host, we create a social and economic dividend for communities and support the visitor experience for people visiting their friends and relatives.
15. Tourism Restaurants & Catering Services
Max’s Restaurant at Red Hill Estate enjoys iconic status as the first winery restaurant on the Peninsula. When the restaurant was established, there were no freeways to the area and it was a long two hour drive from Melbourne.
Combining “the best view of any vineyard in the world” as Ian Sutton, Former CEO Australian Winemakers Federation put it, with an inspiring menu bursting with local produce and delectable wines, a true Mornington Peninsula Experience is guaranteed.
Finalist: Stillwater at Crittenden
Finalist: Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
16. Tourism Wineries, Distilleries & Breweries
Fowles Wine is a boutique family owned winery based in the Strathbogie Ranges and craft some of Australia’s finest cool climate wines including “Ladies who Shoot their Lunch” and “Are you Game?”.
Fowles Wine strives for excellence in the tourism industry by providing quality products and services which are enhanced by the unique events held an their Cellar Door Cafe located in Avenel.
17. Caravan & Holiday Parks
Three hundred days of sunshine! What are you waiting for? Pack up the bag, round up the clan and head to the land of ‘Peaches and Cream’ – a tag given to this irrigated fruit and dairy country. RACV Cobram Resort is smack bang in the region renowned for its record sunny days, and is ideal for a mid-week break, family holiday or a weekend getaway in Victoria.
RACV Cobram Resort is situated on 10 hectares of neat as a pin landscaped grounds with the sweet waft of perfume from blossoms in the neighbouring orchard and offers the spaciousness of an apartment, the convenience of a self-contained cabin or the attractive court setting of the 4.5 star caravan park.
Finalist: Anglesea Beachfront Family Caravan Park
18. Hosted Accommodation
Montfort Manor is located in the heart of Central Gippsland, Victoria overlooking the tree-lined driveway, lake and manicured gardens, Montfort Manor offer four luxury suits to accommodate corporate business travellers, romantic weekenders, honeymoon couples and sophisticated leisure travellers for both long and short stays.
The grounds offer a range of activities including walking paths which surround the property lake, a multi-use tennis court including a hitting wall and two swimming pools.
19. Unique Accommodation
Riviera Nautic is based in Metung at the eastern end of the Gippsland Lakes.
With a diverse fleet of yachts and motor cruisers, Riviera Nautic offers guests the opportunity to experience a self-drive boating holiday immersed in the natural surrounds of Australia’s largest inland waterway, the Gippsland Lakes
An abundance of bird and marine life can be seen with wide expanses of water for exhilarating sailing, tranquil rivers for cruising and fishing and deserted beaches and peaceful coves to visit.
The charter boat provides guests with accommodation, transport and entertainment rolled into one package, offering a truly unique experience.
21. Standard Accommodation
Bring your kids, bring your pets and stroll just 250 metres to the beach
Stylish beachside cottages that genuinely welcome kids and pets are rare. But hidden away just 250 metres from Rye Beach on the Mornington Peninsula are Blue Moon Cottages where couples, families and their pets can relax in three classic seaside cottages.
Finalist: Moama on Murray Resort
22. Deluxe Accommodation
With panoramic views of Bass Strait and Anderson’s Inlet, the eco-friendly multi-award winning RACV Inverloch Resort is the ideal base for a wonderful coastal holiday. The resort is just a few minutes from the Inverloch surf beach, and the township itself with shops, cafes, playgrounds, skate park and inlet beach.
There is a wide range of accommodation to suit all budgets including ocean view rooms, 2 & 3 bedroom villas, 2 bedroom cabins, and caravan sites (some with private ensuites). With on-site facilities – Radius Restaurant, Zenith Lounge, The Kiosk, BBQs, indoor pool, tennis courts, jumping pillow, playgrounds, and a network of walking tracks, you can enjoy your entire holiday without even leaving the resort!
Finalist: Citadines on Bourke Melbourne
Finalist: Quality Hotel Wangaratta Gateway
Finalist: Emaroo Cottages
Finalist: Comfort Inn and Suites Blazing Stump
23. Luxury Accommodation
Crown Metropol Melbourne features an unparalleled luxury hotel experience with modern and unmistakably stylish accommodation for Melbourne hotels.
They offer a variety of rooms ranging from a luxe King or Twin room to a loft or an apartment room setting, all with different and breathtaking views of Melbourne. It also offers rooms for meetings and conferences .
Finalist: Boroka Downs
24. New Tourism Business
South Bay Eco Adventures is the passion and dream of ours (Mike and Sarah Randall – and our two littlies). We started our venture in 2011, after the birth of our second child, we made a big change by turning our passion into a way of life.
To us it’s more than just a business for it combines our love and knowledge of the marine wildlife, the ocean, the history of the bay and Mike’s unique skills as a Shipwright in designing and building custom boats.
We wanted a lifestyle for our kids that emphasised a connection with the environment they live in, and an awareness of our privilege to educate others and contribute to its preservation.
Finalist: Barmah Forest Heritage and Education Centre
26. Qantas Award for Excellence in Sustainable Tourism
The Falls Music & Arts Festival is an annual event over New Year’s Eve held in Lorne, Victoria and is regarded as one of the most environmentally and socially sustainable events in Australia.
Operating over the past 21 years, the festival continues to produce innovative techniques for waste management, power saving measures, successful community involvement programs and so much more.
27. Outstanding Contribution by an Individual
Jeremy is the chief executive officer of Sovereign Hill. He worked various senior management positions within the local government.
Jeremy’s involvement as a member and Honorary Treasurer of the Council of Australasian Museum Directors, President of the Board and the Executive Council of the Victorian Employer’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VECCI), Chairman of the Victorian Tourism Industry Council and Chair of the Tourism Excellence Working Group, Victoria has given him a sound understanding of effective Museum operations and a detailed awareness of the tourism industry.
28. Tourism Education and Training
Our focus is on visitors, encouraging them to explore greater Melbourne and helping them to have a positive experience. We achieve this through the production of Melbourne’s official visitor resources and delivery of industry development programs and marketing campaigns.
Our vision is to maximise Melbourne’s visitor potential, by championing visitor needs, the visitor experience and the visitor industry.
We exist to inspire Melbourne’s visitor industry to excel in delivering the best visitor experiences and encouraging visitors to explore and enjoy Melbourne.
29. Young Achievers Encouragement Award
30. Backpacker Accommodation
We provide an experience that is fun and unique. Stay ‘guilt free’ in the first carbon neutral backpacker hostel in Melbourne, share our love of music and experience the best of everything Melbourne and St Kilda have to offer.
Finalist: Space Hotel
Finalist: The Island Accommodation
Finalist: Port Campbell Hostel
Finalist: Melbourne Central YHA
Finalist: Greenhouse Backpackers
31. Young Achievers Award
As Co-Director of Chatterbox Marketing, Matt has over 12 years working in a variety of roles within the Victorian Tourism industry and has a strong nature based/adventure tourism background having worked in a number of companies including Melbourne Zoo, Melbourne Aquarium, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, Werribbee Zoo, Grampians Tourism as well as consulting to individual tourism businesses including food and wine, indigenous, nature based, backpacker and youth, golf and local government stakeholders.
Matt has developed extensive skills in all aspects of tourism marketing – including social media and international trade marketing, business development, management of staff and volunteers, public relations/communications, managing budgets, project management and event management
32. Outstanding Contribution by Volunteers
The Bendigo Visitor Centre is the best place to start your Bendigo experience. It is a one-stop shop for accommodation bookings, event information and bookings, things to do information, historical details and for finding the perfect Bendigo memento.
Local Bendigo Specialists can help plan every aspect of a visit by having free booking services for accommodation, attractions, tours and event, accessible visitor maps and guide book, self-guided trail material and a large range of local products and souvenirs.
Minister's Encouragement Award
Waratah Hills is a beautifully sited vineyard with two acres of Chardonnay planted on a north south slope and seven acres of Pinot Noir separated by a band of trees into two distinctly different areas of the property.
Waratah Hills wines are made by a young local wine maker Marcus Satchell. Marcus’s natural and intuitive approach to wine making alongside our passion towards producing the best possible fruit has resulted in a very happy partnership. Our Pinot Noir and Chardonnay have made the wine list of some of Australia’s top restaurants.