National Exhibition Centre stars in its own show

Nic Crowther
Wed 17 Feb

It seems that any proposal for a new Conventions Centre is well-and-truly on the shelf for now. However, its’s great to see that International Hotel Group (IHG), the current operator of the National Convention Centre (NCC), is investing to ensure the venue meets  and exceeds international standards.

Based on the photos we’ve seen, it’s already looking better than ever!  



However, the work is not yet done. Much like Constitution Avenue, the ongoing roadworks right outside its door, the National Convention Centre is planning on a series of upgrades that will benefit exhibitors, performers and guests to the iconic venue.

While the NCC attracts a broad range of international acts and shows, General Manger Stephen Wood is very much aware of its place in Canberra business.



“It’s important for us to be more than just ‘present’ in the community. We don’t exist in isolation. We’re part of Canberra and are active in the community through strong, local partnerships.”

Philip Leeson Architects, with its multidisciplinary team, managed the architectural design. Monarch Interior Solutions is spearheading implementation with its commitment to high-quality workmanship and attention to detail.



Canberra Floorcraft is also on the job. Timber, including blackbutt and ash, is being sourced from Thor’s Hammer, a joinery, sawmill and recycled timber yard based at The Old Brickworks.

A lot of work is already complete, including the major refurbishment of the ‘Star Dressing Room’ used by high-profile entertainers putting on shows at the NCC. All Stage 1 work is expected to be completed by 30 June. Stage 2 work is scheduled for completion by end June 2017.



While the aim of all this work is to sustain the NCC as the city’s premier events venue, Mr Wood understands the impact that large shows and exhibitions have for the broader economy.

“Attracting conference business to Canberra has a major ripple effect through the economy as conference delegates spend on accommodation, dining, attractions and retail, which all support local jobs,” says Stephen. “There is growing recognition that business events make a broader contribution to the destination, delivering innovation, knowledge and performance.”