Motels believe in HB Tourism

By Lawrence Gullery

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The low number of winter-time visitors has disappointed Napier Motel Association but it still backs Hawke's Bay Tourism to pull the industry out of the doldrums.

The association's new president, Clinton Green, said all members, which included 36 accommodation providers in Napier city, passed a vote of confidence in Hawke's Bay Tourism at its meeting in October.

"We would not have voted that way if we did not have confidence and support Hawke's Bay Tourism.

"We are not happy with the drop in numbers and we want to do anything we can to improve the situation.

"We are investing some of our own money as a group to try and support Hawke's Bay Tourism in their initiatives."

The association members were now also members of the regional tourism organisation, a move first put up for consideration at its AGM in May.

Mr Green said there was a small group of tourism operators who were not happy with the state of the industry.

It was reported at this week's Hawke's Bay Regional Council meeting that there were plans for a rival tourism organisation, partly as a result of the low number of visitors accessing commercial accommodation in Napier.

"There are one or two people out there stirring but the Napier Motel Association has got a new management team now and we are very positive about working together, we're not looking back at what's happened."

Mr Green said he believed Hawke's Bay Tourism was underfunded compared to what other councils were spending to support their regional tourism organisations.

"The association believes its not getting the support it needs. Others are getting funded far better than the Hawke's Bay one is."

Mr Green operated Deco City Motor Lodge, a business he built in 1997. He is also a past AA Tourism board member and Host Accommodation Group board member.

He said he would use his experience to help the association speak with similar groups around New Zealand to find out what is working and how the group could "piggy back" off other ideas to improve the visitor accommodation industry.

"But we are also looking for ideas and feedback from our members.

"We want to listen and support people and we will put a case to Hawke's Bay Tourism if we see there is a need."

- Hawkes Bay Today

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