Belfast Music Wins NI Tourism Award

Belfast City Council scoops award for New Tourism Project

Belfast City Council last night picked up a Northern Ireland Tourism Award for their music tourism project at a gala award ceremony held at the Ramada Hotel, Belfast.

The New Tourism award has been given for the council's music tourism project which celebrates Belfast's rich and exciting musical heritage, aiming to establish Belfast as a strong, vibrant capital city with unique and exciting experiences.

Created through a series of partnerships, the winning project includes the Belfast Music iPhone app, the Belfast Music Exhibition, the launch of the new BelfastMusic.org website, a Belfast Music Coach Tour and Belfast Music Week which culminated in the free MTV Presents Mark Ronson concert at the Belfast Waterfront Hall last September.

NITA judges commented on the 'unique and insightful approach to broadening the appeal of Belfast and Northern Ireland as a culturally and musically rich holiday destination, and for boosting revenue to the city.'

As well as picking up the award, the judges noted Belfast City Council as delivering an Outstanding Contribution To Tourism:

'The council has recently launched a series of successful tourism initiatives to celebrate the city’s musical heritage and has also invested heavily in the public sector with forward thinking projects such as the Titanic Signature Building. Other projects include preserving the city’s history with the refurbishment of the Ulster Museum and the iconic City Hall.'

'Tourism is vitally important in making Belfast a successful city. Visitors not only contribute to our social and cultural life but bring substantial money into the local economy. It is for these reasons that we are pleased to recognise Belfast City Council for their outstanding work and tireless commitment to developing tourism in Belfast.'

Other Belfast winners include the Open House Festival, picking up an award in the Excellent Events category, which NITB noted:

'It has contributed to the local music and cultural scene in a number of ways including hosting headlining evening concerts, the development of the music and food phenomenon ChilliFest, pairing larger acts with up-and-coming local support acts and free Irish and American music pub sessions.

'The festival happens in September and, despite taking place outside the traditional tourist season, last year 16% of the audience came from out-of-state from as far away as Australia, Hong Kong, Argentina, Canada and throughout Europe, Great Britain and Republic of Ireland. Clearly the festival is having a significant economic impact on Belfast and is attracting many cultural tourists.'

PLM Promotion's Fatboy Slim event at Giant's Park was also commended, with the judges commenting on the co-operation and partnerships developed by the ambitious and successful project.

For the complete list of award winners see www.nitb.com

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