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30 Mar 2016 13:00

Etihad Airways and the Sydney Opera House today announced the extension of their Major Partnership for a further five years. 

The extension will take Etihad Airways well into the Opera House’s Decade of Renewal – launched in its 40th Anniversary year in 2013 to ensure the World Heritage-listed ‘masterpiece of human creativity’ continues to inspire new generations of audiences and visitors.

Today’s announcement comes at an exciting time for Etihad Airways and Australia’s number-one tourist destination.

In addition to being named Air Transport World’s Airline of the Year 2016, Etihad Airways was last year voted World’s Leading Airline* for the seventh consecutive year. The Abu Dhabi-based airline is also rapidly increasing its global footprint through groundbreaking innovations in product and service, major investments in destination marketing, and brand campaigns.

Meanwhile, Opera House Renewal is well underway, from a suite of building projects that will touch all four corners of JørnUtzon’s masterpiece to a renewed focus on integrating the experience audiences and visitors enjoy at the Opera House – transformative arts and culture, the greatest contemporary and classical music, inspirational speakers, creative shows for children and families, insightful tours and incredible Australian cuisine.

Under the terms of the new deal, Etihad Airways will continue as the Sydney Opera House’s Major Partner and Opening Nights Presenting Partner. The airline will support Opera House programming by flying guest artists and performing arts companies to Sydney from across its extensive network of 116 international destinations. It will also leverage its investment in Australian tourism – through its partnership with Tourism Australia – to bring more visitors to Sydney and to the Sydney Opera House.

NSW Deputy Premier and Minister for the Arts Troy Grant said: “The Sydney Opera House is a world-renowned performance venue and continuing a partnership with the award-winning global airline Etihad Airways makes perfect sense.

“I would like to congratulate both the Sydney Opera House and Etihad Airways on this agreement that will deliver countless benefits to both organisations.

“The Sydney Opera House has attracted commercial sponsorship in a way that has brought serious innovation and investment in Australia’s most recognised building while maintaining its heritage and integrity.”

Sydney Opera House CEO Louise Herron AM said: “We began our partnership in the Opera House’s 40th Anniversary year, which was an important milestone for us. Three years on we are now seeing huge momentum across Renewal, so this is the perfect time for us to explore how we can continue to work together, building on our shared commitment to Australia and its central role in global culture and the arts.

“We want everyone’s experience of the Opera House to be as inspiring as the building itself. Working closely with Etihad Airways we want to explore how they can best support a more integrated artistic and visitor experience as we prepare the Opera House for future generations.”

Etihad Airways General Manager Australia and New Zealand Sarah Built said extending the partnership with Sydney Opera House for another five years underscored the airline’s commitment to Australian tourism and to the arts and culture worldwide.

“The partnership with the Sydney Opera House, one of the world’s architectural wonders, is especially significant for Etihad Airways.

“Together with the five-year, $30 million deal we signed with Tourism Australia last year, it multiplies our efforts to promote travel to Australia and to elevate Sydney’s profile as one of the world’s great tourist and cultural destinations in key markets.

“It also increases our investment in Australia’s cultural sector enabling us to support the programming of arts and entertainment experiences that enrich the lives of local citizens as well as visitors to the city.

“The partnership is a natural fit because both organisations share many of the same values, including a shared passion for excellence and inspirational guest experiences.”

* Voted World’s Leading Airline at World Travel Awards, the Oscars of the travel industry for seven consecutive years from 2009-2015.
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