Jenolan Caves claims historic awards double

Proud employees: Dan Cove and Charles Degotardi from Jenolan Caves.
Proud employees: Dan Cove and Charles Degotardi from Jenolan Caves.

For the first time, the Blue Mountains region has achieved two wins at the national tourism awards — and Jenolan Caves claimed both.

“I congratulate the exceptional and dedicated team at Jenolan Caves for their incredible double gold win at the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards,” said Blue Mountains Lithgow and Oberon Tourism chairman Randall Walker.

“What began as a win at our regional tourism awards last year in the category of tourist attraction, Jenolan Caves has taken all the way through a state win to this prestigious national victory. Following that up with another win for heritage and cultural tourism has certainly further enhanced the profile of Jenolan Caves and put Oberon on the map.

“This impressive result is a credit to the professional and highly motivated team of people at Jenolan Caves led by Peter Austen and Dan Cove. Booking agents and visitors alike have all had contact with a positive staff member from Jenolan Caves including Domino Cove, Charles Degotardi, guides, customer service staff, front and back of house and everyone that contributes to the world class experience offered.”

Jenolan Caves general manager Peter Austen said: “It is a rare and notable achievement to win one Australian tourism award, but to win two is remarkable and I suspect a rare achievement.”

He congratulated all staff on their efforts.

Caves operations manager Dan Cove, who was also in Cairns to collect the awards, spoke of the excitement for the staff.

“These awards are like Olympic gold and make all our innovations and work worthwhile. We are proud to be the world’s oldest cave system and Australia’s longest continually operating tourist attraction, but our total focus is on the new — new ideas, new technology and meaningful visitor experiences.”

Mr Cove urged people who hadn’t been in a few years to “come again with the family, and have a new experience of an ancient national treasure that should be supported by all Aussies”.

The Qantas Australian Tourism Awards were held in Cairns on March 2.