Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo set to pump $16m into Wellington economy

An influx of visitors for the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo will see $16 million economic benefits spread throughout ...

An influx of visitors for the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo will see $16 million economic benefits spread throughout the region.

The Wellington region is expected to reap $16 million in economic benefits from the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

The event has attracted an influx of visitors to the capital, with accommodation already booked out, forcing people to stay as far away as Levin and Martinborough.

Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency chief executive Chris Whelan said economic benefits would be spread throughout the region.

"Based on current ticket sales and projected new spend, the four days alone are going to be worth an estimated $16m to the Wellington economy this summer."

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More than 80,000 tickets had been sold across four performances, and accommodation demand saw multi-night bookings across the region, he said.

"It's like having an All Black test double-header. The city and region are going to be buzzing and the atmosphere will be electric," Whelan said.

Masterton Copthorne Hotel & Resort manager Michelle Kirkpatrick said the Tattoo also provided great exposure for the Wairarapa region.

"This has been a very successful event for the property. We have an extra six tour groups choosing to stay at the hotel over the four days."

While Tattoo weekend was an extraordinary event, Wellington was ripe for further property investment, Whelan said.

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"With a Sofitel under development, proposed Rydges Hotel at Wellington Airport and a four star plus Sebel property due to come on board in Lower Hutt in early 2017, there is work already underway to accommodate the ever growing demand."

The Tattoo is being presented by the New Zealand Festival and funded by Wellington City Council.

Wellington City Council's economic portfolio leader councillor Jo Coughlan would not say how much council had spent on the event. However, she said council looked for a twenty-to-one return on investment on events.

Ticket sale data for the Elton John concert, AC/DC and the Edinburgh Tattoo all show that more than 50 per cent of the audiences were visitors to the region, she said.

"This will be an amazing boost for the city. Out of town spending makes a huge difference to the Wellington economy," she said.

There was a pipeline on ongoing world class events planned for the city, which was vital for retail, tourism and business in the city, she said.

"Looking ahead to the winter we will host the Wellington Jazz Festival and All Blacks vs Wales test in June, All Blacks vs Australia test, Wellington on a Plate and Beervana in August and of course World of WearableArt in September/October."

This will be the second time the Tattoo has visited Westpac Stadium - following a sell-out event in 2000 - and just the fourth time it has been held overseas in its 65-year history.

"Everywhere we go there are fifth order benefits and it is our belief that about $4m from each performance in Wellington will go into the New Zealand economy," Tattoo chief executive and producer, Brigadier David Allfrey✓ said:

 - Stuff


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