Santa Monica Pops Up in Sydney Harbour

Chefs Lunetta and Citrin Chef Armstrong at Santa Monica at Pier One Sydney


From September 22nd through October 31st, a slice of Santa Monica popped up along the iconic Sydney Harbour offering Australians the opportunity to experience a taste of laid-back Santa Monica living. Santa Monica Travel & Tourism (SMTT) partnered with Pier One Sydney Harbour, a five-star waterfront boutique hotel, to launch the groundbreaking activation for six weeks. The primary goal was to increase destination awareness, visitation and room nights among affluent Australian consumers, as well as top media and travel trade.

Branded elements included a Santa Monica Pier archway, food truck, beach themed furniture, Ferris Wheel carousel and Route 66 sign. In order to maximize its reach and investment, SMTT worked with several leading industry and consumer partners – United Airlines, Visit California, Luxperience, 7travel and Lululemon – to offer an array of unique Santa Monica experiences within the activation space. These included a curated menu of SoCal-style food and beverages, live cooking demos from award-winning Santa Monica chefs, free wellness and fitness events such as yoga and ROGA, organic mini- farmers markets and live music sunset sessions.

Three renowned Santa Monica chefs also traveled to Australia for culinary collaborations with Chef Thom Gorringe of Pier One’s One Hat restaurant, The Gantry. These included Chef Josiah Citrin, two-star Michelin Chef and owner of California’s highly-acclaimed Mélisse; Chef Raphael Lunetta, Owner and Chef Proprietor at Santa Monica institutions Lunetta and Lunetta All Day; and Chef Govind Armstrong of Santa Monica icon The Lobster. We’d like to extend a special thank you to Josiah, Raphael and Govind for stepping away from their busy restaurants and lives to travel to Sydney and provide a true taste of the Santa Monica experience for activation guests.

On the media side, SMTT hosted a launch event, a series of chef’s tables and a sales mission media lunch for top influencers and media. These efforts generated 66 media placements with an audience reach of 23.1 million and a social media reach of 3.1 million. On the trade front, SMTT hosted agent events for American Express Centurion, Excite Holidays, Travel Managers and MTA; a sales mission trade lunch for top clients; and a Luxperience social event for 350 luxury buyers and suppliers from the APAC region. Through its partnership and promotion with 7travel, SMTT also reached 4.1 million users online and reached 5.2 million views via 7travel’s TV spots.

In total, the activation garnered and resulted in:

  • 38 Events
  • 1,584 Hosted Attendees
  • 9,400 California Meals Served
  • 18,282 Foot Traffic
  • 5.5 Million Digital Impressions
  • 37.1 Million Brand Opportunities to See

Team Santa Monica Leads Annual Sales & Media Mission to Australia

SMTT was joined by partners Hotel Shangri-La, Huntley Santa Monica Beach, Santa Monica Proper Hotel and Shore Hotel on its annual sales mission to Australia. To maximize SMTT’s investment in the Santa Monica at Pier One Sydney Harbor activation, SMTT conducted the mission during the activation, giving clients the opportunity to immerse themselves in the Santa Monica experience. The team met with over 230 trade clients across Melbourne and Sydney and hosted a media brunch for eight leading press outlets.

Over the course of five days, Team Santa Monica conducted trainings and meetings with several key trade partners including Virgin Australia (Leisure and Corporate teams), Infinity/Flight Centre, Showgroup, Excite Holidays, Helloworld, Qantas Business Travel and Travel Associates. They held lunch and dinner events for top clients at the waterside Bougainvillea House in Brisbane and at the Gantry at Pier One Sydney Harbour, where they shared updates on the destination and partner hotels. Additionally, the team hosted events for the American Express Platinum Centurion Teams and held a series of salon and wellness events geared specifically for home-based agents from Mobile Travel Agents and Travel Managers. These were held at the Santa at Pier One activation space to provide a unique beach city experience for the guests.

While in Sydney, the team also engaged with journalists from top publications including International Traveller, Delicious, Out and About With Kids, Vacations & Travel, Body & Soul, Good Food, Hotel Management and Luxury Travel. The journalists were treated to a seafood themed BBQ lunch courtesy of Chefs Govind Armstrong and Thom Gorringe.

SMTT’s annual in market missions continue to serve as important networking and relationship building opportunities for our partners, generating new and sustained business and media coverage. Australia remains one of the top international feeder markets for Santa Monica with 10% of international visitors coming from Down Under.

How to Work with SMTT

Want to improve your tourism business? Santa Monica Travel & Tourism can assist to increase your tourism revenues through a number of marketing, advertising (Official Visitors Guide, Official Map) public relations and sales opportunities.

For more information, please find contacts for each department below or visit Santa Monica Travel & Tourism’s Business Opportunities page.

Marketing & Interactive:
Kim Sidoriak, Chief Marketing Officer

Public & Community Relations:
Lauren Salisbury, Public Relations Manager

Partnership Opportunities:
Visit for more information