THE FIRST national tourism event of the year is to take place in Limerick’s Thomond Park this Thursday.
‘The Tourism Space LIVE’ is a one-day event for business owners and managers in tourism and hospitality and will include sessions on business, self-empowerment, professional development and sustainability.
Now in its second year, the event is hosted by Tina O’Dwyer who is originally from Ballybricken in Limerick but is now based in County Clare.
She is a facilitator, coach and trainer specialising in tourism and has worked with businesses and destinations throughout
Ms O’Dwyer said the event is a timely one for business in Limerick, as tourism continues to come into focus in the city.
“Limerick is now a gateway city and county to the Wild Atlantic Way; there’s a new county tourism strategy and there is great progress being made in food tourism development. There are new amenities such as the Great Southern Greenway and, of course, Limerick is about to reveal the new Limerick brand.”
“It’s evident that people are really working together in Limerick with great leadership from the local authority and other public bodies. There are highly innovative businesses in Limerick offering compelling new visitor experiences and I’m excited to see Limerick’s fresh new proposition make a significant impact in the industry in 2020 and beyond.” she said.
The one day event will equip delegates with tools and knowledge that can lead to swift and lasting change in their businesses.
“It aims to create a power surge in the business at the start of the year, as tourism business begin implementing their revenue and profit growth strategies for 2020,” she added.
This year’s speaker line-up includes Mary Fitzgerald, proprietor of Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel in Adare, David McCarthy, Head of Hospitality and Tourism from AIB, travel writer Pól O’Cónghaile, celebrity chef Catherine Fulvio and Ms O’Dwyer who will deliver the keynote speech on sustainability.
“Sustainability has become the most talked about topic in tourism over the last year. While we are hearing a lot about new policies and attitudes, we are not perhaps hearing enough about practical solutions for tourism businesses,” she said.
This year’s event will feature a new ‘Sustainability Suite’ - a place for delegates to meet people with ready-to-go solutions to assist them on their journey towards sustainability.
The suite is one of six initiatives Ms O’Dwyer says will make this year’s event even more sustainable and responsible than last year’s. Actions include a tree planted for every ticket sold, no print materials, no single-use food and beverage supplies, no lanyards with plastic name-card holders and no ‘Made-in-China’ gifts in goodie bags.
The headline sponsor of the ‘Tourism Space LIVE’ is AIB. It is also supported by Limerick City and County Council and Fáilte Ireland.
David McCarthy of AIB said: “AIB is delighted to sponsor the event and take part in the discussion on sectoral performance and sustainability in the Hospitality and Tourism sector.
“Supports are needed to help change societal behaviour, and backing our customers in their transition to a more sustainable way of doing business is at the core of what we do," he added.
Tickets for the event which will take place in Limerick’s Thomond Park on January 23rd from 9am to 4.30pm are available at www.thetourismspace.com/live.