Don’t ditch Grand Prix, says Accor

Don’t ditch Grand Prix, says Accor
By admin


Accor has warned that Victoria’s economy will suffer if Melbourne loses the razzmatazz of the Grand Prix, as the state government re-evaluates its commitment to the event.

The mounting costs of hosting the race, said to have had a $50 million price tag last year, has put continued public funding of the event on the agenda.
But Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone has threatened that if public funding is slashed, the Grand Prix would be pulled not only from the Victorian capital, but from Australia. 
Accor Australia chief operating officer Simon McGrath said the loss of the race could give the impression the city was not interested in maintaining its status as Australia’s “events capital”.
“The Grand Prix provides a much longer benefit to the city than just a weekend,” he said. “It has been the catalyst for the city winning many conferences and other major events because international visitors have been able to witness first hand how well Melbourne hosts such large occasions.”
In addition, Sydney’s ongoing redevelopment of its conference and convention facilities would see Melbourne face much stiffer competition in the events arena.
“The simple fact is that if Melbourne loses the Grand Prix, almost certainly Australia will as well, so the ramifications of any failure to renegotiate the agreement will spread far wider,” McGrath said.
He predicted tourism income and employment across the state would be significantly impacted.
The hotel operator reported 100% occupancy across its 19 Melbourne hotels on Saturday, when the race will take place.

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