Supported by Destination NSW and hosted by the NSW Business Chamber, the official launch marked the 25 year milestone anniversary of the awards, which recognises and rewards the high calibre of tourism offerings in NSW. The festive launch event featured singer and Australian Idol winner Casey Donovan, previous NSW Tourism Award winners and industry VIPs. “We have a lot to be proud of in NSW…in 25 years we have had a 130 per cent increase in international visitors with major increases in tourists from our Asian neighbours,” NSW Business Chamber chief executive officer Stephen Cartwright said, before encouraging tourism businesses in the state to get involved. “The benefits of being involved in the 2014 NSW Tourism Awards include benchmarking your business against colleagues, increased exposure and awareness, expert feedback from the judges and the chance to compete on a national level.” Registrations are currently open with the final date for submissions 15 September. Finalists will be announced in October with the winning announcements happening 27 November at the NSW Tourism Awards Gala Dinner. Source = ETB News: Lana Bogunovich The 2014 NSW Tourism Awards were officially launched yesterday at First Fleet Park, Circular Quay, bringing together tourism operators from all over New South Wales in a fun and engaging launch festival.