AIA going nowhere(1)

By
|
24 August 2000

The incentive association which dumped Bali for its 2000 annual conference in favour of a talkfest on a cruise ship won't be going anywhere this year.

The AustralAsian Incentive Association abandoned its plans for a conference on the Seabourn Sun in September although the reason for the decision is unclear.

"It wasn't lack of interest, rather it was the time of year planned for the cruise," said Karin van der Plight, Australia and New Zealand director of sales for Cunard and Seabourn Cruise Line.

The Seabourn Sun arrives in Sydney next month and will be chartered during the Olympics to US broadcaster NBC before departing for a South Pacific cruise.

AIA's first choice for the conference had been the Nusa Dua Beach Hotel and Spa in Bali, which was due to make a final presentation to AIA delegates at the 1999 annual conference in Perth when hotel management received a telephone call telling it not to bother.

At the time, Sue Gan, Nusa Dua Beach Hotel director of sales and marketing. said the resort was "surprised, upset and disappointed" by the decision.

Lynne Schinell, recently appointed as new executive director of the AIA, said members had indicated that they would be busy with the Olympics in September.

"We hadn't even sent out the conference brochure before it was called off," she said.

Instead, the AIA will hold a series of workshops in Sydney over the weekend of October 21-22, together with the association's gala awards dinner at the Westin hotel.

The AIA has scheduled its 2001 annual conference for Rotorua in New Zealand and will shortly release bid documents for the 2002 conference.

Nusa Dua Beach Hotel told TravelWeekly East that it would definitely bid for the 2002 conference.

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