Willie Creek Pearls was named among Australia’s top tourism providers at the 2022 Qantas Australian Tourism Awards last week, taking home two awards including their first national GOLD win.
The WA family business was crowned top Tourism Retail and Hire Services provider and awarded bronze in the Tourist Attractions category for their Willie Creek Pearl Farm experience.
The Australian Tourism Awards is the tourism industry’s national standard of excellence, recognising outstanding operators in major cities through to the outback.
Willie Creek Pearls shared the stage with nine other WA businesses, which were all shortlisted as national finalists after winning gold in their categories at the 2022 Perth Airport WA Tourism Awards in November.
Willie Creek Pearls was just one of two WA businesses to receive dual awards on the night, along with The Hike Collective.
Co-owner Robert Banfield accepted the awards in Sydney on Friday evening on behalf of the business.
Robert attributed the award wins to his family, the hardworking staff on the ground, loyal members and the wider community for supporting the business, all of which came from humble beginnings more than 30 years ago.
“Wow, how cool is that! Accepting the gold and bronze awards on the national stage was humbling. What a fantastic way for our family and team to be recognized for all of their hard work over the journey,” Robert said.
“A huge thank you to our wonderful team and loyal customers whose phenomenal support has been outstanding, particularly in recent times.”
CEO Paul Birch said the accolades provided some real recognition for the cumulative contributions of every member of the team over time.
“We strive to continuously improve who we are and what we do at every moment to provide quality products and customer-based experiences,” Paul said.
“The high expectations we hold of ourselves is what makes us who we are and drives us to continue to deliver as we head into another challenging and exciting time ahead.”
The wins add to the growing collection of awards for Willie Creek Pearls, who is currently one of the most awarded tour companies in WA.
In addition to last years Perth Airport TCWA Awards, recent accolades include Business of the Year at the 2022 Broome Business Excellence Awards and 2022 Tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice for both Elizabeth Quay showroom, which offers a live pearl harvest experience, and the Willie Creek Pearl Farm. See a full list of awards here.
Willie Creek Pearls and the Banfield family continue to invest in Broome’s existing and developing industries.
In 2023, the business will further invest more than $1 million in its commercial pearling operations, adding a larger vessel to its fleet to support increased production at its farm.
In addition, its collaboration with WA biotech company Marine Biomedical continues to gain momentum, with its first patented technology, PearlBone™. The natural bone substitute is derived from nacre, or mother of pearl, source from shell produced at Willie Creek Pearl Farm, and could be set to revolutionise the global medical sector.