Unprecedented coverage as all eyes on Heron Is
HERON Island was thrust onto the world stage this week as global media descended on the idyllic holiday destination for a world-first announcement, and it was Gladstone businesses who made it one to remember.
Representatives from across the world, including BBC, French media, National Geographic and UK newspapers, visited the island to spread the word about the state of the reef just 80km off Gladstone's coast.
The event, put on by Tourism and Events Queensland, provided a showcase of the island and encouraged local and international tourists to come and experience the area for themselves.
Businesses from around Gladstone were involved in catering for the 60-strong group, including Lightbox Wine + Espresso Bar which provided free coffee, MV Party hire which helped with decorations and table, chair and lighting hire, and Marine Helicopters which transferred daily.
General manager of Heron Island Resort, Tony Barradale, said it was the biggest event the island had ever held, describing the media attention as "unprecedented".
A media centre was set up on the island with communications established to allow Wi-Fi and other connections on the island to spread Heron Island's message to the world.
"The prime focus of this is to draw attention to the fact the SGBR is in good order," he said.
"What this does for not just Heron but also for our general Southern Great Barrier Reef community, it highlights positivity.
"We're really hopeful that over the next few years as more and more happens with Heron, we'll be attracting more and more locals out here, because I regard that market as supremely important."