CIM-Magazine-Feb2015The farewell function for the Australian Tourism Exchange 2014 not only wowed guests but it won Cairns-based Tropical Catering & Events the award for Best Achievement in Catering at the 2014 Australian Event Awards.

Australia’s largest annual travel and tourism businessto-business event, Tourism Australia’s Australian Tourism Exchange (ATE) brings together Australia’s tourism industry and tourism wholesalers with retailers from around the world.

Held for the first time outside of a capital city in its 35-year history, ATE 2014 saw around 1200 Australian sellers from approximately 460 companies, 600 key buyers from over 38 countries, and more than 50 international and Australian media descend on Cairns in Tropical North Queensland for five days in May. One of Australia’s best known leisure tourism destinations for the international market, Cairns turned on its tropical charm for the event, with organisers and delegates alike hailing it an outstanding success.

According to Tourism Australia, overall satisfaction reached a record high this year with 100 per cent of the buyers and 99 per cent of sellers who responded to a post-event survey expressing their satisfaction with the event. Factors highlighted by the 1800 delegates as having contributed to the success of ATE14 included the welcome by the city of Cairns and enthusiastic support of the local community; the casual, laid back atmosphere; and the flawless planning and execution of the event itself.

Singled out for special praise was the ATE14 Farewell function, held at Cairns Cruise Liner Terminal and catered for by Cairns-based Tropical Catering & Events. The launch pad for Tourism Australia’s global “Restaurant Australia” marketing campaign, the event showcased Australia’s exceptional food and wine experiences.

Convention & Incentive Marketing Magazine, February 2015.  Click for the full article.


OpenHouse-Magazine-Feb2015The farewell function for last year’s Australian Tourism Exchange (ATE) in Cairns not only wowed guests but it also won local company Tropical Catering & Events the award for Best Achievement in Catering at the 2014 Australian Event Awards. Ylla Watkins spoke with Cathy Alexander, Tropical Catering & Events’ events manager.

Q: Congratulations on your win. What does it mean to you to be recognised in  this way?
A: We were blown away with the win. We assumed it would be one of the caterers from one of the capital cities that took out the gong. It’s amazing recognition out of a regional area like Cairns. It’s good to know that we’re on par with the big companies and to know that we’re on trend with the style of food that we’re serving.
Q: As well as a farewell to the 2000 delegates of the ATE, Tourism Australia used the event to launch its global “Restaurant Australia” marketing campaign. How did that affect what you did?
A: The big challenge for the Restaurant Australia launch was that we had to have ingredients from every state of Australia represented in the menu, because that is what Restaurant Australia is all about. When we did our tender document the chef came up with a menu but also an ingredient list, listing where everything came from. Another challenge was ensuring that everyone was well fed, well serviced and well watered in two hours. That’s when we came up with the concept of doing a menu that combined stand-up canapé-style service with tended food stations.
Open House Magazine, Feb 2015.  Click for the full article


Dishing up Catering Coup, Cairns Post 4 June 2014

CAIRNS POST:  A REBORN catering company has the G20 finance ministers’ meeting in Cairns later this year in its sights after successfully impressing the tourism industry with the farewell function at last month’s Australian Tourism Exchange.

Paul and Mark Kamsler of the Pacific International Hotel re-established their off-site catering division, Tropical Catering and Events, late last year after completing a $20 million refurbishment of the hotel. They said the division was put on hold while they concentrated on the upgrade. The inaugural event was the ATE 14 Restaurant Australia-themed farewell function for 1700 guests. “We identified there was a need for a more competitive approach to off-site catering in Cairns,” Paul Kamsler said.


Expo Finale a Triumph, Cairns Post 21 May 2014CAIRNS POST: A DIRECTOR of an award- winning Sydney event agency has described the finale of the Australian Tourism Exchange in Cairns last week as the “best” he has been involved with in 18 years.

Belle-Laide Events’ Mark Taylor said feedback about the Restaurant Australia themed food, wine and entertainment event was “beyond incredible”. “Our company is an award- winning Sydney-based event agency,” he said.

“We’ve worked everywhere in Australia, hosted events in Singapore and New Zealand. “(We’ve) created lavish events and intimates of every size, shape and form for 100 people to over 2000 people. “But never have I seen commitment in my career to the scale that was given to us by local Cairns suppliers in producing the important finale to this major tourism event. “I have never met such hardworking and heartwarming professionals and really feel that they should have their moment to shine.’’

Mr Taylor said Tropical Catering and Events “delivered the best event I have ever been fortunate to be involved in my 18 years in hospitality”.  Download PDF


cairnpost Politicians at the barbecue to thanks Cairns for G20 support.

SNAGGED: Thanking the community for hosting G20 are Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch and Steve Ciobo. Picture: STEWART McLEAN

WARREN Entsch continues to delight tastebuds, manning a sausage sizzle to thank the Cairns community for hosting the G20 Finance Ministers’ summit in September.

Earlier this year, the Federal Member for Leichhardt whipped up a seafood feast for journalist Annabel Crabb on ABC’s Kitchen Cabinet.

Yesterday’s free barbecue at The Esplanade was embraced by locals and tourists alike, and was co-hosted by Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, Steve Ciobo.

“Cairns did really well, it showcased the region and set the benchmark very high,” Mr Ciobo said. “We’ll be able to leverage off G20 for future tourism events. The community really rallied together, this is a small way of expressing our gratitude.”

Advance Cairns chief executive Mark Matthews said Cairns had proved again it was a world-class city.

“Cairns has put on a fantastic show, not just for G20 but all the major evens throughout the year, the Australian Tourism Exchange included,” he said.

Kimberley Vlasic
The Cairns Post
December 22, 2014 5:50AM   Click for the article



QqhaHA REVIEW January 2015
Pacific Hotel Cairns wins Catering Award: Cairns-based Tropical Catering & Events has beaten out hundreds of contenders to win the covert trophy for Best Achievement in Catering at the prestigious 2014 Australian Event Awards held in Sydney in November.

The national awards program rewards innovation and recognises excellence in the Australian events industry. Tropical Catering & Events was lauded for its work on the farewell function for the Australian Tourism Exchange event held in Cairns in May 2014.

The event was the launch pad for Australia’s new global ‘Restaurant Australia’ campaign, which aims to promote the very best of Australian food and drink to a discerning global audience of tourism professionals.

Executive chef Ben McCarthy brought together a menu of the finest ingredients for the event, creating an epicurean feast that took the 2000 influential tourism industry diners on an educational journey through Australia’s gastronomic highlights.

“Being singled out as one of the best event caterers in the country is a huge honour at any time, but as a young company in regional Australia we are even more proud of the accolade,” managing director Mark Kamsler said.

Launched in late 2013, Tropical Catering & Events is the offsite catering arm of Pacific Hotel Cairns, servicing large corporate events and conference functions in  the region.

Click for the article.


Tourism Australia wins Exhibition of the Year for Australian Tourism Exchange (ATE) 2014.   Belle Laide wins Special  Event of the Year for ATE 2014 farewell event

The meetings industry’s night of nights, the prestigious 2014 MEA National Awards was held at the Hamilton Island Convention Centre on May 26, 2015.

This year’s awards was a 1960s Mad Men and Mad Women theme where many of the gentlemen did their best Don Draper impressions and the ladies looked splendid in a variety of colours and styles.

The MEA National Awards consists of five categories which recognise individuals, venues, products and services, and organisation management. The awards highlight the fantastic and innovative work within the industry and each year the competition gets tougher and tougher.

This year MEA’s state and national awards had a record number of entries and the judges were thrilled by the standard set by everyone who entered.

Congratulations to all the winners!
Click here for the full article.

  • Environmental Statement

    Tropical Catering and Events is based out of the Pacific Hotel Cairns and is located at the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, a World Heritage Area declared in 1981 by UNESCO because of its outstanding universal value.

    This Listing recognised the Reef as being one of the most remarkable places on earth, as well as its global importance and its natural worth.

    Acknowledging its strategic location, Tropical Catering and Events is committed to conservation efforts that support long term environmental practices in every location and venue that we work in in this region.
    Click here for our Environmental Statement

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