Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Penrith Council hosts hospitality industry forum  

Penrith City Council recently invited local businesses across the hospitality industry to share firsthand insights into the challenges they are facing in the current operating environment.

The Penrith Hospitality Industry Forum held on 7 May received strong support from the industry bringing together more than 40 local hospitality and dining operators, as well as representatives from the Penrith Valley Chamber of Commerce, Penrith CBD Corporation and St Marys Town Centre Corporation. 

Mayor, Todd Carney emphasised the significance of fostering collaboration between local businesses to bolster resilience within the hospitality sector.  

“Council hosted the forum to provide a platform for our local bars, cafes, and restaurants to share their experiences and insights, and to facilitate discussions on how Council and the industry can support each other,” Mayor Carney said. 

“Discussion points included potential solutions and case studies focussing on what is working well, and what is impacting business. Marketing and promotion, events and activations within the area, grant programs and parking were all key themes discussed at the forum.” 

Acknowledging the challenges faced by businesses, Mayor Carney highlighted Council’s recent initiative to support the hospitality sector amidst cost-of-living and economic pressures.  

“In recognising the hardships faced by our local hospitality sector, Penrith City Council has already taken action to alleviate financial strain. At Council’s Ordinary Meeting on April 29, Councillors unanimously passed a resolution to reduce outdoor dining fees by 75% until June 30, 2025.” 

“Reducing outdoor dining fees will ease some financial burden on businesses to assist with their continued operation”. 

He said Council will continue to explore ways to support local hospitality businesses, including ongoing promotion of restaurants, cafes and bars on Visit Penrith, Council’s main digital tourism platform, and cooperative marketing campaigns.

The Mayor said Penrith businesses are already responding to the challenge in a variety of ways from increasing marketing, reducing business spending or staff hours to updating their menu and changing operating hours to meet customer preferences. 

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