HEIFER Station Wines and Lakeview Luxury Retreat were among the tourism operators recognised at the annual NSW Tourism Awards, with both tourist hubs excited by picking up nods.
Heifer Station’s cellar door, located about 10 kilometres west of Orange on The Escort Way – won silver in the Tourism Wineries, Distilleries and Breweries (Country and Outback region) category, while Lakeview Luxury Retreat, situated to the east of Lake Canobolas, was awarded bronze in the Self Contained Accommodation (Country and Outback region) section.
That we can contribute to ... help bring people to regional NSW is something we’re really proud of.Michelle Stivens
It was the first year Hiefer Lane had entered in the awards, and owner Michelle Stivens said she and husband Phillip were “excited, really happy”
“We’re really proud of what we’ve done and it’s great to have that recognised … we were up against some really good competition,” she said.
She said there was no expectation they would place in the category in their first year nominating.
Mrs Stivens said she was proud of what the award will mean to the community in the flow-on affect that comes from people visiting the winery.
“One in 13 people in NSW are employed in the tourism industry which has an annual turnover of $55 billion, that we can contribute to that and help bring people to regional NSW is something we’re really proud of,” she said.
Pam King from Lakeview Luxury Retreat said while she and husband Trevor were happy to have received bronze, they were hoping to go one better than last year and win gold.
“We’re happy but a bit disappointed … but to be in the top three for three years is something we’re proud of,” she said.
The Parkes Elvis Festival and Canowindra International Balloon Challenge were the region’s biggest winners, with the former taking gold and the latter bronze in Festivals and Events (Country and Outback NSW region) category.
NSW Business Chamber Western NSW regional manager Vicki Seccombe said she was pleased to see such a high percentage of the winners come from western NSW.
“It truly highlights the strength of our tourism operators in our region,” Mrs Seccombe said.
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