Location
Margaret River, Western Australia
Date
1–3 December 2020

HomeSpeakers

Alexandra Burt

Co-Founder & Proprietor, The Landsmith Collection

Alexandra Burt

Biography

Alexandra Burt is Co-Founder and Proprietor of The Landsmith Collection which owns and operates businesses that bring together luxury tourism, the natural world and agriculture in Western Australia and the Top End. These include Voyager Estate, a leading producer of organically-farmed, carbon-neutral wines in Margaret River, and one of Australia’s most storied cattle stations, Bullo River Station, in the Northern Territory which, as well as a tourism offering, has a unique partnership with the Australian Wildlife Conservancy. Projects in development include a regenerative farm adjacent to Voyager Estate and an ambitious plan to breathe new life into Margaret River icon, Wallcliffe House, as a luxury lodge.

Alex spent 11 years on regional, state, and national wine industry boards and committees. She is currently Chair of Australian Futures Project, board member of Tourism Australian and the Australian String Quartet, and Patron of Private Giving for West Australian Ballet.

Abstract

Geo-Tourism and the Elephant in the Room

Geo-tourism is a growing force in global tourism leveraging the desire for visitors to have a deeper, more meaningful connection with the place and people they are visiting.

At the Landsmith Collection, our properties are remote – not just in a global context but also in an Australian context. For Bullo River Station in the heart of the East Kimberley, just getting there is an adventure of its own.

As high-end travellers continue to seek out more remote, isolated and less-discovered locations, we must consider the impact that travel has on climate and the environment. At what cost do we travel? How do we espouse sustainability and care for our land when the very nature of the tourism we encourage is damaging the ecosystem?

As the social licence around travel and tourism gets further questioned, Australia’s isolation – and its associated emissions cost – will become an ever-bigger barrier in attracting visitors, and the locals-only approach can only be sustained for so long before everyone has been-there-done-that.

Australia is not alone in this respect, but we are one of the most impacted and, therefore, we have the opportunity to show the greatest leadership.

We can and must address this challenge if we want to be true to the philosophy and commitment to ecologically-responsible and sustainable tourism.

In this presentation, Co-Founder and Proprietor of The Landsmith Collection, Alexandra Burt, will explore these concepts whilst providing meaningful case studies of sustainability and ecotourism practiced at Bullo River Station and Voyager Estate winery in Margaret River.