With less than four weeks to go until 2023 Rotary International Convention takes place in Melbourne, excitement is building among organisers, attendees and local businesses alike as the city prepares to welcome more than 14,000 Rotary members and participants from over 120 countries and regions around the world to share ideas and inspiration.
Set to take place from May 27th to June 1st across two of Melbourne’s iconic venues – Rod Laver Arena at Melbourne and Olympic Parks and Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC), the Convention is expected to create millions of dollars in economic spinoffs for the local economy supporting the city’s and regional Victorian restaurants, retailers, venues, attractions and accommodation sector.
“We’re thrilled to be hosting this year’s Rotary International Convention in Melbourne,” said Melbourne Convention Bureau Chief Executive Julia Swanson.
“The convention is a fantastic opportunity for us to showcase our city’s strengths as a global destination for hosting large-scale conventions – the first of this scale since pre-covid.
“The city has been preparing for this event for many years, and we are confident that our world-class facilities, exceptional events supply chain, and city-wide collaboration will ensure an unforgettable experience for all attendees.”
Considered one of the most valuable business events secured for Victoria in the past 10 years, the convention is expected deliver $91 million to the local economy including a significant room block for hotels driving high occupancy levels for up to 67 properties across Melbourne including Accor, Crown Melbourne and Pan Pacific Melbourne during the off-peak season.
Throughout the five-day conference Rotary members can look forward to a packed program of events, including keynote speeches, workshops, and networking opportunities, all set against the backdrop of Melbourne’s world-renowned hospitality and cultural offerings. Hundreds of ancillary events are expected to take place engaging many of Melbourne’s leading venues including the Plaza Ballroom, Eureka89 and Flemington Racecourse to name a few.
Rod Laver Area is expected to reach capacity for the famed Rotary Opening Session.
“Melbourne & Olympic Parks is proud to be hosting four sessions at this year’s convention, and to provide delegates with the opportunity to experience one of the city’s favourite venues in Rod Laver Arena,” said Melbourne & Olympic Parks Chief Executive, John Harnden AM.
“This is a unique opportunity to show off the best of our city to a diverse group of people from around the world, and we are thrilled to be able to welcome them to our precinct – Melbourne’s home of live events.”
Rotary’s House of Friendship exhibition hall at the MCEC, where more than 100 Rotary humanitarian projects will be on display, will be open to the public for free from 29th May to 1st June.
MCEC Chief Executive Natalie O’Brien AM said, “We’re excited to welcome the Rotary International Convention to Melbourne this month. The convention will take over the entire venue, with MCEC hosting the House of Friendship exhibition hall, breakout sessions, luncheons and pre-convention events. It is a fantastic opportunity to showcase not just our iconic venue, but the best of what the city has to offer, strengthening Melbourne’s reputation as a leading destination for international conferences and events.”
Often described by members as a “mini-United Nations” because of its global scope and cultural diversity, Rotary’s International Convention will see a kaleidoscope of energy, colour and excitement where Rotary members will exchange ideas for how to improve lives and bring positive, lasting change to communities around the world.
Mary Barry, Rotary Chair of the Host Organisation Committee, said “We’re absolutely thrilled to host this year’s Rotary International Convention in Melbourne, which will provide an outstanding combination of inspiration and entertainment for our members and participants, as well as for those interested in learning more about us.”
“It’s also an opportunity for Victorian Rotary members to experience the international scope of Rotary and to showcase the positive change they are bringing to communities on a global stage,” said Ms. Barry.
The bid led by the Melbourne Convention Bureau with support from the Victorian State Government and Tourism Australia, sees this hero event return to Melbourne for the second time, marking the 30th anniversary of the 1993 convention.