Robert Pennicott and his team at Pennicott Wilderness Journeys has picked up two Gold & one Silver award at the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards, held tonight at Luna Park in Sydney. The company’s flagship experience Bruny Island Cruises was recognised as Australia's Best Ecotourism Operator for the second year running and won Silver for Best Tourist Attraction. Pennicott Wilderness Journeys received the Qantas Award for Excellence in Sustainable Tourism for the second year in a row.
Managing Director Robert Pennicott said there were so many outstanding finalists and being recognised in such prestigious company was truly humbling.
"We live in amazing place, and it’s very special to be able to showcase our breath taking scenery and incredible wildlife to visitors. It's a total team effort by all of my staff, this award recognises the hard work and dedication of everyone involved."
Pennicott Wilderness Journeys is Advanced Ecotourism certified and measurements through the EarthCheck program show the business exceeds global best-practice standards for efficient fuel, energy and water use. Each year the business offsets their carbon emissions through Greening Australia. Since 2008 these donations have planted 120,000 trees across Tasmania, not only storing carbon, but also linking critical habitat for birds, bandicoots and other native wildlife.
"Being recognised for excellence in sustainable tourism is so important for us, because it is at the heart of everything we do," Robert said.
"We are committed to sustainable operations, with minimal impact on the natural environment where we operate."
The Qantas Award for Excellence in Sustainable Tourism comes with a $25,000 prize to be used for a sustainable project. Robert Pennicott said he was very excited about the prize and what could be accomplished with the money.
"It is fantastic that Qantas support this award and the prize will allow us to implement even more sustainable initiatives," Robert said.
Pennicott Wilderness Journeys supports many conservation and community projects. In the past 12 months the business has supported over 200 charities and community organisations. To date they have donated over $100,000 to a range of initiatives, including the joint program with Parks & Wildlife and Wildcare to eradicate feral species on Tasman Island, protecting colonies of land-nesting seabirds and saving over 50,000 shearwaters and fairy prions.
Success at the 2013 Qantas Australian Tourism Awards comes on the back of a very exciting year for Pennicott Wilderness Journeys with the business launching Tasmanian Seafood Seduction, a world’s first seafood gathering experience, in November.