Delivering excellence to Australia’s Pharmacist Community at the biggest pharmaceutical event in the Southern Hemisphere
Why Australia’s Pharmacist Community Keeps Coming Back to GCCEC.
“The team want to come, and it’s part of our company rewards to come along and work on the stand.” With this statement, Allison Hollard, Aspen Pharma Australia’s Head of Consumer OTTC, perfectly summarises why Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre (GCCEC) has become the venue of choice for the annual Australian Pharmacy Professional Conference (APP).
This year, the event ran in March, with the theme of “Evolve. Engage. Explore.” As the largest event for pharmacists in Australia, it attracted more than 7,450 delegates across its four days, and, in the words of Kos Sclavos, the conference chairman, the Pharmacy Guild of Australia booked out the entire facility and made the most of every square centimetre of space available to them.
“We had over 80 sessions, 130 speakers. It’s a diverse program with everyone from professors to business and motivational speakers. It’s a very broad-based program,” he said. This event provides a prime opportunity to connect with peers and industry world leaders in a world-class location.
APP 2023 noted record breaking numbers attending educational sessions, networking functions and a sold-out exhibition, signalling the appeal of the destination and venue. The medical conference has made GCCEC its home for the past 19 years and will be returning next year.
Event Expertise: Making event management effortless
For an event of this magnitude, having an abundance of assistance and the availability of a wide range of technical and service features is essential. As Adrienne Readings, GCCEC General Manager, said, one of the reasons the APP Conference has continued to partner with GCCEC is because “they love the experience of being here - from the audio-visual to the food and the easy flow.”
Exhibitors also appreciate the support they get from GCCEC staff. “They’re all super friendly. Whatever we need, we just ask for it,” Andrew Harb, Medisca General Manager APAC, said.
Associations have specific requirements to ensure the successful running of their event. These requirements include:
- Flexibility: Associations require event spaces that can be customised to meet their specific conference needs. This includes the flexibility to arrange seating in various configurations (theatre-style, classroom-style, round tables, etc.) and to modify the room layout to accommodate different session formats, such as panel discussions, workshops, or keynote speeches. By being able to provide the entire GCCEC space for the conference, the APP conference has total flexibility in planning the event.
- Expert support: One of the things that the APP values in the organising of its event is experienced support from people that they can trust for the planning and execution of the conference. This includes assistance with event planning, logistics, technical setup, troubleshooting, and on-site coordination.
The relationship of nearly two decades helps ensure a seamless event that addresses and exceeds all these needs, supported by the latest high-quality technology available across event industry. This commitment to ongoing innovation is why GCCEC has developed a reputation for next-level commitment to service and been able to continue partnering its clients over the long term.
Bleisure Central: It's about both work and play with GCCEC
One of the qualities that helps GCCEC stand out as a premium event venue is its ability to blend a traditional conference experience with the opportunity for people to relax and have a good time. In addition to the space inside the convention centre itself, the location, on the banks of the Nerang River, gives delegates the opportunity to get outside and connect with some iconic views.
As the event has grown, it has expanded to include a marquee set on the building’s northern lawn overlooking the river. This area is a favourite of delegates and exhibitors who can take a break from the conference setting, while dining under trees al fresco or inside the tent.
The facility itself has been designed to encourage a blend of formal and casual interactions. This allows delegates to flow freely from the showroom to the auditoriums and session rooms, and then move to the outdoors areas. The open and spacious settings encourage people to reconnect with colleagues and make new introductions.
Destination Appeal: The destination's appeal explained
And then, with Surfers Paradise, Burleigh Heads and Byron Bay so close by, there’s a prime opportunity for delegates to extend the business trip by a couple of days and enjoy the opportunity to take some leisure time and experience all the destination has to offer.
“It’s a great chance for delegates to meet in this state-of-the-art convention centre while experiencing our great Queensland lifestyle in one of our iconic regions,” The Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe MP, Minister for Tourism, Innovation and Sport, Minister Assisting the Premier on Olympics and Paralympics Sports and Engagement, said.
The Gold Coast is a world-renowned leisure destination but also a booming home to technology, innovation and health sciences. It’s a city that offers a well-balanced blend of business and leisure opportunities that in turn attracts more delegates than any other location in Queensland. The destination offers activities from cultural and natural experiences to extreme sports, food and wine in breathtaking settings.
“We love coming back to GCCEC every year for a variety of reasons – the high level of service provided, the value for money, and the first-class food and beverages on offer,” Emma Fernance, Events Manager for The Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Queensland branch, said.
“Plus, we get exclusive use of the venue, which we wouldn’t get at a major city convention centre. It is also in a great location – our delegates love coming to Broadbeach and being able to access the beach, an excellent array of restaurants and cafes and a large range of accommodation options to suit all budgets, all within walking distance to the Centre.”