We’re back with our series of blogs interviewing repeat participants of the AAVEA conferences.
This week, we’re chatting to longtime attendee ,AAVEA board member and Guest Experiences Manager at the Two Oceans Aquarium Alichia Nortje.
What convinced you to attend the first Attractions Africa Conference in 2014 at Kirstenbosch Gardens?
Alichia : I wasn’t aware of the conference until Sabine Lehmann ( now president of AAVEA) phoned saying “we are having a dedicated attractions industry conference right here in Cape Town”.I was fortunate to attend the IAAPA Expo in Orlando two years prior and it was incredible to know that we were being offered an opportunity to attend an industry associated conference right here on local soil – two full days with fellow attractions. It made absolute business sense to attend
Why do you keep coming back?
Alichia: No other conference offers what the AAVEA ( formerly Attractions Africa) conference does. The majority of local conferences and networking opportunities are all centered around and dominated by Tourism. The AAVEA conference is the only dedicated attractions industry event which really hones in on the art and science of the visitor experience and attractions industry.
Share one of your best memories of an Attractions Africa conference.
Alichia: There is usually one magical session that absolutely pays for attending the conference. I love anything that touches on pricing strategy and I find immense value in case studies / real examples where presenters aren’t scared to share what really happened. I thoroughly enjoyed the international speaker Massimiliano Freddi from Leolandia last year! He was absolutely brilliant. I have a collection of notebooks from the conference since 2014. I often refer to the notes made in the past 5 years.