Three West Coast tourism operators named as tourism award finalists

Three West Coast tourism operators have been named as finalists in the 2019 South Australian Tourism Awards.

Doi's Ocean Front Apartments of Streaky Bay, Perlubie Sea Eco Villas and Maralinga Tours will be aiming to win the top prize in their category at the gala dinner on Friday, November 8 at the Adelaide Convention Centre.

The trio have been announced as finalists alongside fellow Eyre Peninsula representatives Adventure Bay and Calypso Star Charters.

Doi's is a finalist for the second year in succession and co-owner Lyn Finch said it was a privilege to be named alongside renowned South Australian tourism experiences and operators.

"We are absolutely delighted and when you look at the list there are very good tourism operators present," she said.

"We are proud to represent Eyre Peninsula, and Streaky Bay - we punch about our weight and now we need to expose that to the world.

"Each year the competition is more demanding and so you need to find new ways to innovate and create a wow experience for the customer. We want to under-promise and over-deliver, and we say we are not five star but our guests are and that is our focus."

She said it was great to see other Eyre Peninsula tourism operators named as finalists and said an important factor for Doi's and Perlubie Sea was finding "a point of difference".

Perlubie Sea's Trudy McGowan said she was hoping to improve on last year's third place in the hosted accommodation category.

"We were fortunate enough to get bronze last year and hope to do better this year," she said.

"The business continues to be seen positively with the responses we get and we hope to see that recognised.

"We are very passionate about tourism and there's a huge opportunity on the West Coast."

She said Perlubie Sea was a "luxury accommodation" outlet that catered to couples and focused on being environmentally friendly.

Ms McGowan was thrilled to see other Eyre Peninsula tourism operators named as finalists and said that was what the region needed.

General manager of the Maralinga Tjarutja Lands Sharon Yendall said she and all those associated with the tours were "overjoyed" to be named a finalist.

"Maralinga Tjarutja Council had the foresight approximately 20 years ago to have a business plan completed with the idea of one day operating tours that would ensure all Australians were aware of what happened at Maralinga during the British atomic test era," she said.

"It is fantastic to be recognised as a provider to cater to the tourism industry (and) the feedback received from tourists visiting the site is very positive, demonstrating that tourists are happy with what we offer."

The tour has been running since 2015 and provides the opportunity to tell the story of the Anangu relationship with the Maralinga lands, as well as information on the atomic testing.

"The opportunity for Maralinga Tours to represent this region in the tourism awards demonstrates that tourism can be achieved in the most remote places and there are a lot of tourists out there that enjoy alternative tours," Ms Yendall said.

"This is an important part of history that needs to be told."

Tourism Industry Council South Australia chief executive officer Shaun de Bruyn said Eyre Peninsula was home to many fantastic tourism experiences.

"The Eyre Peninsula is a wonderful region and the unique experiences on offer for our visitors really help set South Australia apart amongst a highly competitive industry," he said.

"I congratulate all finalists and wish them the best of luck."