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Australian Tourism Awards 2016

Taronga Western Plains Zoo has won the Unique Accommodation Award at the Australian Tourism Awards gala ceremony held in Melbourne on Friday 5 February 2016.

Members of the Taronga Western Plains Zoo team were at the gala event to accept the prestigious award.

“This is an absolutely outstanding achievement for the Zoo, winning the peak industry award for the Unique Accommodation category,” said Taronga Western Plains Zoo’s Director, Matthew Fuller.

“This is the first time the Zoo has won the Unique Accommodation category at the national level, recognising our continued endeavours to develop and operate our unique overnight experiences to a global standard,” said Mr Fuller.

Mr Fuller said the win is a wonderful outcome following the Zoo’s significant investment in overnight experiences.

Over the past three years the zoo has undergone some exciting changes with the creation of Billabong Camp, redevelopment of Zoofari Lodge and the opening of Savannah Cabins self-contained accommodation, providing visitors with unique opportunities to wake up in the wild.

 “We have benchmarked our experiences against some of the best nature-based operators in the world, and we’re thrilled that these experiences are receiving national and international recognition,” said Mr Fuller.

 “We are incredibly pleased and overwhelmed by our success and are delighted to not only receive recognition from industry, but from our visitors as well.”

 “It highlights that the work we’ve done and the success we’re having is translating into a greater ability for a long term sustainable approach to supporting our animal care and conservation endeavours.”

 Taronga Western Plains Zoo is always looking for ways to continue to evolve and develop and will now undertake a comprehensive Visitor Experience Plan, which will see new and exciting wildlife exhibits along with key upgrades and redevelopments across the site, providing unique ways for visitors to directly connect with wildlife.

 “The plan will see a number of significant projects take place at the Zoo, with $49.7 million being invested to improve the visitor experience and set Taronga Western Plains Zoo aside from any other Zoo in Australia,” said Mr Fuller.