Rugby great attracts affluent travellers to Aotearoa

New Zealand rugby legend Andrew Mehrtens held an audience of premium travellers captive in Singapore yesterday speaking about New Zealand’s culture, attractions and luxury offering.

Tourism New Zealand and luxury travel agency, Lightfoot travel who represent affluent travellers in Asia’s key cities of Hong Kong and Singapore hosted the event. 

Mehrtens spoke about New Zealand as a fantastic destination with a full calendar of high profile sporting events that can be incorporated into a premium travel itinerary.

Andrew told the group “I’ve been lucky enough to travel around the world and I can tell you nothing compares to New Zealand. The landscapes, the activities, the wine and food and most importantly the people and the warm welcome - it really has it all.”

He went on to talk about one of his favourite spots “I have a soft spot for Queenstown and Jacks Point is regarded by many golfers I know from all parts of the world as the best course they have played on. Spectacular views out over Lake Wakatipu, amazing holes spread across the elevated coastal terrain, and a backdrop of the famous and sheer Remarkables mountain range at almost touching distance.”

The event took place at the New Zealand High Commissioner’s Residence following the Singapore Sevens on the weekend and was attended by local media.

Lisa Gardiner, Manager Business Events and Premium, Tourism New Zealand said “The premium traveller from Singapore and Hong Kong has an interest in global sporting events. We wanted to showcase how sporting events being held here could be incorporated into a luxury New Zealand experience.”

“Having a well-known rugby great like Andrew Mehrtens talking about New Zealand was a privilege and was well received by the 50 plus audience of premium travellers, many of who were major rugby fans.”

New Zealand continues to appeal to and attract the world’s wealthiest with figures from New Zealand’s luxury Lodges showing a 19% increase spent on premium accommodation in 2015/16 compared to 2014/15.

“Because premium travellers tend to spend much more in one day than a regular tourist would on their entire holiday, encouraging luxury travel directly supports our work to grow value over volume.”

Attracting people who have the ability to travel anywhere in the world can be challenging and it is an extremely competitive market. Tourism New Zealand internationally promotes the country as a luxury destination and showcases the unique premium experiences on offer.

“In the last 12 months we have attended over 20 international trade events, hosted 44 premium travel sellers and 24 renowned International media outlets in New Zealand.”

New Zealand’s 2017 sporting calendar is full of major international events from rugby to cycling and golf and this is generating some high profile international exposure for New Zealand. Tourism New Zealand is taking full advantage of this by showcasing how these events can be incorporated into a  bespoke luxury New Zealand experience.