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Manchester's Visitor Centre Is The Officially Best

Award boost for tourist information office

Published on May 24th 2012.


Manchester's Visitor Centre Is The Officially Best

MANCHESTER’S tourism chiefs are celebrating after the city’s Visitor Information Centre won a gold award at last night’s VisitEngland Awards for Excellence.

The resulting combination of cutting edge technology and friendly and knowledgeable staff has made the visitor experience even more stimulating and engaging

Manchester’s Visitor Information Centre (MVIC) – managed by Visit Manchester and the first point of call for hundreds of thousands of visitors to the city – won ‘Visitor Information Provider of the Year’.

The VisitEngland Awards for Excellence celebrate the best of England’s tourism industry and a gold award is the most prestigious accolade bestowed at the annual awards ceremony, which this year took place at The Athena in Leicester.

The award recognises MVIC’s extensive £800,000 renovation undertaken in summer 2010 using funding by Manchester City Council and the Northwest Regional Development Agency (NWDA).

This investment saw MVIC become the first Visitor Information Centre in Europe to use the type of futurist technology only previously seen in films – a platform that responds to touch, natural hand gestures and objects placed on a display.

Paul Simpson, managing director of Visit Manchester said: “Manchester’s Visitor Information Centre reopened in June 2010 after an extensive renovation which saw it move to Piccadilly Gardens and significantly upgrade its facilities. The resulting combination of cutting edge technology and friendly and knowledgeable staff has made the visitor experience even more stimulating and engaging for every person who walks through the door.

“Of course, the success of Manchester’s tourism sector is also a huge team effort – at Visit Manchester we take a strong partnership approach, working closely with the airport, airlines, hotels and visitor attractions to ensure the city-region delivers a fantastic visitor experience. Therefore the whole Greater Manchester tourism community can be proud for the part they have played in helping us win this award.”

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said: "Manchester has established itself as one of England's premier visitor destinations and tourism supports and creates many jobs. We're a forward-looking city and the Visitor Information Centre plays an important role in giving visitors a memorable first impression. We're pleased that VisitEngland has recognised its contribution.

"With new attractions, such as the National Football Museum which opens in July, being added all the time there has never been a better time to showcase our city to visitors from across the region, the country and indeed the world." 

Greater Manchester was also recognised with The Lowry Hotel in Salford picking up a silver ‘Business Tourism Award’ and Meadowcroft Barn B&B in Bolton and Opus One Restaurant & Bar in Manchester receiving ‘Highly Commended’ nods for ‘Bed & Breakfast / Guest Accommodation of the Year’ and the ‘Taste of England Award’ respectively.

Apparently, according to the official figures Greater Manchester’s tourism industry generates £5.8bn for the local economy and supports 77,000 jobs.

Confidential also reckons that the BDP designed information centre is excellent. Visitors used to tired tourist provision in old-fashioned centres are astonished to find themselves walking into a sort of Apple store for tourism. But the key to the success is the quality of the staff and their commitment to ensuring Manchester's guests get the best from the city.

The big drawback is the location under a deep canopy of the Mercure Piccadilly Hotel. The sheer number of buses here often masks the information centre from view. Still it's always good for the city to win awards such as this and have its profile lifted. So well done to Visit Manchester and Marketing Manchester for being brave with the design and the concept. 

MVICMVIC

 

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11 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

DavidMay 27th 2012.

Nice centre but pity the website visitmanchester.com is so poor. Just tried to find out what events are on today and gave up after 30 minutes. The screen is full of clutter and the search facility (which is its answer to everything) doesn't work properly.

DamienMay 28th 2012.

It's a proud day as well for the Leapfrog team as we are a local business that installed the video wall, screens, and technology. If you would like to know more about the technology give us a call 01204 661704 (apologies if this breaks any posting rules!)

MixerJuly 16th 2012.

Indeed, it's also a proud day for Economic Solutions who project managed the IT and Microsoft Surface installation. If you'd like to know how we did it please contact us on 0161 2454854

AnonymousJuly 19th 2012.

I'm sure the tech is wonderful and it looks 'different' from the "old-fashioned centres" but what is it for? and does it do the job?

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