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Champagne, Lucky Shoes & Gold

It was a day just like any other, well that’s not really true at all!!

A 3am wake up call, trip to the airport and a glass of champagne, all this by 5am. With a flight to Melbourne we were on our way to the Australian Tourism Awards to defend our title.

An early morning champagne ahead of the Australian Tourism Awards

An early morning champagne ahead of the Australian Tourism Awards

With 3 hours from hotel check in to the start of the function a quick lunch was in order, unfortunately a shoe shop got in the way and a brand new pair of lucky shoes were purchased.

Not just any shoes, sparkly gold shoes!

The lucky shoes

The lucky shoes

As is tradition, the WA finalists caught up for a couple of drinks and a pep talk, we of course were running late thanks to the shoe shopping extravaganza.

Thankfully there was enough time for a glass of bubbly to set the mood and help dull the pain of the blisters being caused by the new, sparkly gold shoes.

Award ceremonies are always tricky events, lots of hopes, heaps of tension and lots of ‘free’ drinks. They are a bit like boxing matches, with a slow tentative start, then they gather a momentum all of their own, you just hope that you are the one delivering the knock out blows.

Following the ‘excitement’ of the politicians speeches (has anyone ever suggested that maybe, just maybe they should talk less and listen more – just an idea) it was game time and the first of the nights awards was announced, shattering 6 sets of dreams and making some Tasmanians very excited.

Instantly the momentum of the room was set, another year of Tasmanian dominance, this year with a little help from Victoria.

Western Australia was doing well, winning lots of medals, but we couldn’t seem to get gold.

As defending gold medal winners the tension and expectations were growing and we were getting more uncomfortable by the minute.

Finally our category arrived, just as the medalists were being announced we noticed movement, leaving the room was Julie, the WA Awards Coordinator…..surely she wouldn’t leave the room if we were going to win gold?

No bronze (happy), No silver (very happy) ………..GOLD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Top Drop Tours owneris with the Australian Tourism Awards gold trophy

Holding the gold trophy aloft over the Yarra in Melbourne


Now the walk to the stage was a long one as we were seated at the very back of the room, but funnily enough, those new, lucky, sparkly gold shoes didn’t cause any problems, they were to come a little later in the night.

Meeting George Kosturkov, the artist that makes the gold trophies

Meeting George Kosturkov, the artist that makes the gold trophies

Speaking publicly when you have adrenaline flying through your body is not easy, hopefully we made sense and our message was absolutely from the heart.

Over the last two years we have been inspired by the Tasmanian operators and their tourism industry. Rather than get frustrated or annoyed at their success, we have quite simply been inspired to get better at what we do, both individually and as part of a broader industry.


Now we partied long and hard, then with about 3 hours sleep sprung out of bed, to do a WINE TOUR.

A day off in Melbourne, means wine tasting in the Mornington Peninsula

A day off in Melbourne, means wine tasting in the Mornington Peninsula

Would you believe it, one day off in Melbourne and we can’t help but check out another wine region looking for the next piece of our ever changing puzzle.

I am pleased to report that there is no permanent damage from the shoes, the blisters are healing and we are back at work with our fabulous staff ensuring that Top Drop Tours keep getting better. Thank you all for your hard work, it is greatly appreciated and a major reason that we have achieved the success that we have.

We want to offer a huge congratulations to our fellow medal winners, many of whom we work with, or have experienced their products:

Koomal Dreaming, Adams Pinnacle Tours, Sandalford Wines, Sail Ningaloo, Hideaway Haven, Horizontal Falls Seaplane Adventures, Cottesloe Beach Hotel, The Anzac Centre and The Lake House Denmark.

We even made the highlights of the big night, for those of you that recognise us, it’s pretty obvious how excited we were, just check out the crazy woman with the gold trophy at 0:39.

Fingers crossed that next year the momentum of the room takes a sharp turn west!


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