Luxperience closed this week on a high with CEO Helen Logas planning to grow the show by “at least another 50%” for 2014. The 2013 incarnation of the luxury travel show was already up 50% on the inaugural one in 2012.
Over 300 buyers met with 148 exhibitor companies over a series of 26,000 15-minute meetings during the three days of Luxperience. Representatives from 47 countries attended.
Luxperience 2014 will also take place 31 August to 3 September 2014 in the impressive location of the Overseas Passenger Terminal. The venue allows travel buyers to look at iconic Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge, while conducting business.
“We already have commitments from 80% of exhibitors here this week that they will sign on again for next year,” said Lindy Andrews, Director of Sales and Partner Alliances for Luxperience. Private sector entities such as Six Senses Hotels, Resorts and Spas, Relais & Chateaux, Luxury Lodges of Australia, and Navigate Oceania (which represents 28 luxury lodges in New Zealand and the Pacific), have already committed to Luxperience 2014.
Logas said the waterfront venue was a key component of the show’s success. “It gives us the intimacy that luxury buyers and sellers want. With the view of the Opera House and waterfront, the physical environment is inspirational and helps sellers sell.”
The CEO of Smartflyer, New York based travel buyer Michael Holtz, said: “The venue is incredible. Every time we turn we see the Opera House. It really is spectacular.”
Luxperience’s niche focus on high-end travel is key, said Karine Thomas, Director of Navigate Oceania. “There is no other show that’s held in the southern hemisphere that has the level of luxury buyers attending as this show does.”
Holtz said that American travel buyers should take notice. He said: “The potential is huge. The airlift is now there. You have four different airlines from LA to Sydney, plus Air New Zealand to New Zealand. American agents just need to sell Australia.”
Last year an estimated US$4million of business was contracted within two months of the show, according to a buyer and seller survey. “Feedback from exhibitors is such that we seem likely to comfortably exceed that this year,” said Logas.