The Fremantle Chamber of Commerce Tourism Committee is an industry collective body representing the interests of Fremantle Chamber of Commerce tourism sector membership base. In 2020, the Fremantle Tourism Association merged with the Fremantle Chamber to ensure a consistent voice for Tourism businesses in Fremantle.

The Committee includes leaders from The Esplanade Hotel by Rydges, Fremantle City Tours, Fremantle Markets, Fremantle Prison, Kailis, The Left Bank, Quality Suites, Rottnest Express, Rottnest Island Authority, Hello Perth, Little Creatures and the WA Maritime Museum. The Committee reports directly to the FCC Board.

The Tourism Committee is committed to the maintenance of the commercial and social fabric of Fremantle, and the strategic development of the Fremantle tourism industry in a manner that promotes the unique qualities of the Greater Fremantle region. The Committee considers the heritage character and vibrant cultural and community foundation upon which the city is built provides considerable potential for the revitalisation and facilitation of growth of Fremantle tourism operations.

Objectives

The Committee is focused on two key initiatives for 2020:

  1. Advocating for a State of the Art Visitors Centre in three point locations (Kings Square, Pioneer Park and the international cruise ship terminal) and to improve visitor information to promote attractions and accommodation within Fremantle (see Fremantle from the Inside Map below)
  2. To focus on ways to bring more events, activations, business conferences and work in collaboration with key partners, including the City’s Destination Marketing Working Group and Festivals Team to develop a Fremantle event and activation strategy to help position the City as a key attraction for locals and beyond.

Work Completed to Date

1. Visitors Centre Position Paper

The Tourism Committee desires the Visitors Centre to be a stand-alone outlet focused on delivering comprehensive information regarding all aspects of Fremantle tourism operations including hospitality, attractions, retail and other associated tourism activities.

The Fremantle Visitors Centre in an essential part of creating a positive experience for visitor arrival, and together with appropriate wayfinding throughout the City, sets the tone for locals and visitors to understand and engage with Fremantle’s soul and spirit. It is a focal point that enables understanding of street level activations, guides unique experiences and develops the visitor’s curiousity to explore the hidden treasures of Fremantle.

The following elements are considered essential to the ongoing commercial success of the Fremantle Visitors Centre:

  • Location: The centre must be located in a high foot traffic area to capitalise on spontaneous visitation (ideally Pioneer Park, Market Street). A Pioneer Park location could offer the potential to uncover hidden underground heritage via glass floor feature.
  • Supporting Infrastructure: Consideration needs to be given more widely to expanded tourism infrastructure, both within the Fremantle Visitors Centre and across the City, such as public toilets, prayer rooms and parenting facilities.
  • Collateral – readily available collateral, including curated maps and a variety of information to be available and attractively displayed for all visitors, including both paid and bookable product information. Information should focus on day-trip attractions, annual events, retail experiences and festival information. All collateral should be used to create in-store harmonisation with Fremantle Destination Branding.
  • Bookings – the committee notes with disappointment that the current visitors centre can no longer take commercial tour bookings but stress that this facility should be available in some form even if it is commission based to cover costs or even if just through an online web portal that can be easily accessed in the centre.
  • In-store retail that promotes local Fremantle stores and artisans could be accommodated via rented shelf space, concessionals or in-store pop-ups.
  • Expansive and permeating signage is crucial and should be augmented with satellite information outlets and creative wayfinding.
  • Capacity for engaging with cruise ship passengers (including transit and turnaround guests) and improving visitor experience.

The Committee recommends the Visitor Centre staff and management be required to attend tourism famils to facilitate improved capacity to promote and market bookable tourism products. There should be no limit in place to prevent visitors centre staff engaging with new and existing Fremantle retail, hospitality, accommodation or tour companies and finding out more about their service offering.

The Committee also recommends the management of the Visitors Centre be assigned to the City’s Economic Development office, and the separation of Community Services functions, in the interests of enhancing the visitor experience through dedicated Tourism associated services. In addition, an audit done of the financial viability of successful visitors centres such as Margaret River, the Swan Valley, Clare Valley Food, Wine and Tourism Visitors Centre and Brisbane Visitors and Booking Centre.

The Committee recognises the need for ongoing consultation with prime tourism operators and as such the points outlined above represent an indication only of some fundamental design and operational elements the Committee deems essential to a successful and collectively profitable Fremantle Visitors Centre.

2019 Tourism Committee Visitors Centre Submission

2. Tourism WA “Our Story” Analysis and Event/Activation/Project Checklist

As part of a growing campaign to attract local visitors, the Tourism Committee followed the Tourism WA “Our Story” Campaign framework to design a checklist for events, activations and strategies going forward to remain focussed on our unique offering in the attraction landscape.

A summary of the workshop findings is below, with a link to the document produced here.

Essence & Purpose – Historic Port City with Grit and Soul / Explore Fresh Creativity

Values – whatever we do we have to weave in sense of adventure and discovery

Urban Adventure – Sea, Spirit, Soul,

Authentic, Raw, Sustainable, Creative, Fun, Fresh Open Air, Diversity of Characters and Ethnicity

Personality

Free-thinking, enriching, down to earth, wondrous, enlightening, gritty, creative and warm

Visitor Benefits

Impressive urban form and buildings, fresh ocean air, impressive sunsets down high St, urban adventure, photo opportunities, history, long walks and exploring colourful characters and stories, sailing, fishing, bike riding, swimming, dining, unique shopping, quirky independent retail, welcoming small bar spaces and quality fresh produce fresh from the boat and local producers

Experiences to Package

1. Urban walk – quirky retail, small bars, great food and impressive buildings and ocean, Curving pirate-like back streets from another era.

2. Beaches and waterfront dining watching the sun go down

3. Freshly caught seafood, craft breweries, distilleries, small bars, boutique hotels, markets to taste and explore

4. Heritage listed precinct, world heritage listed prison, cappuccino strip, tram rides, Roundhouse, lighthouses, Museums, working Port infrastructure, historic shoreline

5. Characters of a working Port, buskers, performers, ethnic diversity and artists

6. Photos of memories, characters, sunsets, fresh produce, big ships and wooden planked docks

7. Wellness and Artists – Yoga, Live music, Day spas and natural landscapes – a kind of gritty Byron of the West Coast

Something that makes families, kids, and visitors wander, be delighted and amazed.

3. Fremantle from the Inside Map

Experiencing Fremantle from the inside is a creative initiative driven by the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce (FCC) Tourism and Small Business & Retail Committees. It is an interactive engagement process to unite local business leaders and the broader community around Fremantle. It aims to build a stronger community with pride in their offering, increase economic return through a stronger referral network and deliver sustainable outcomes.

Launched in December 2019, the initiative started with a unique tour for Fremantle business, employees and their families to re-discover Fremantle, exploring Fremantle from the Inside. It incorporated all that is historic, quirky and great about our port city and ran in tandem across the day. Starting at Kings Square or the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce in the historic West End, locals meandered through the offering past the iconic artists at J-shed to end up at the WA Maritime Museum overlooking the docks.

Collateral was provided to each participant to ensure they have the tools to refer all visitors to the best of Fremantle and to help each curate their own recommendations to other customers who cross their doors in the lead up to Christmas.

A key feature was the development of the Hello Perth Fremantle Experience Maps, featuring the artwork of local artist Ken Rasmussen of the Fremantle Village, which encapsulated the walking nature of our village community, the best and the quirkiest of our businesses. A total of 40,000 of the local maps were produced and distributed for use across the next 6 months, including a stand-alone youth endorsed edition supported by the City of Fremantle’s Community Development team.

We will be working with Hello Perth to produce another Fremantle from the Inside Map ready for September, and before the school holidays.

See a link to the current Map below:

Fremantle Map 2019

For more information, or to add to these projects please contact Chamber Membership & Committee Officer