Cairns Convention Centre lifts the curtain, unveiling world-class expansion

Cairns Convention Centre lifts the curtain, unveiling world-class expansion
Cairns Convention Centre lifts the curtain, unveiling world-class expansion

Following an AUD $176m (USD $112m) refurbishment and expansion, the award-winning Cairns Convention Centre is excited to unveil its new expansion, revealing a new standard for international and national conferences and events.

The world-class redevelopment is set to solidify the highly regarded centre as a showcase venue for Queensland, deepening its place on the international stage and enhancing Cairns Convention Centre’s position as a leader for business events.

Striking venues set the stage

The state-of-the-art expansion delivers an additional 10,500 sqm of flexible meeting, banquet, and exhibition space catering for up to 2,500 delegates. The standout feature of the expansion is a show-stopping new addition – the Trinity Level with a banquet room and outdoor terrace.

The Trinity Room is the largest space to be unveiled as part of the expansion and is ideal for gala dinners and large cocktail receptions for up to 500 delegates. The adjoining Trinity Terrace provides the perfect backdrop as a pre-function space complete with indoor and alfresco options with outstanding views over the Trinity Inlet and the ranges beyond, allowing delegates to soak in Cairns’ tropical climate.

Adding to the Centre’s expanded space is the refurbishment of the Mezzanine Level, which includes a new 450-seat plenary venue and Mezzanine Exhibition space accommodating up to 30 booths. Completing the Mezzanine Level is the addition of three new meeting rooms, catering for up to 370 delegates across the three rooms.

Part of the significant expansion project also includes a large undercover Porte Cochere planted with native and tropical flora. The unique immersion in the landscape allows delegates to experience the tropics in a distinct way. The sense of arrival and flexibility of the space serves as an additional outdoor exhibition and gathering space.

In addition to the expansion, Cairns Convention Centre’s Auditorium, Arena, and existing meeting rooms underwent a full redevelopment.

Tech-driven experiences transform conferences and events

The renewed Cairns Convention Centre delivers dynamic experiences through technology. The state-of-the-art audio-visual upgrade ensures business events and meeting planners have access to innovative technologies that create immersive experiences to captivate audiences.

The tech-driven experience at Cairns Convention Centre transforms events at speed, enabling event organisers an unprecedented ability to make their events stand out.

All meeting spaces have been outfitted with cameras that have pan, tilt, and zoom control features, AV control and built-in preview monitors for easy reference to presentation notes plus leading-edge laser projectors ensure visual content is presented in sharp, high resolution.

With technology being broader and pivotal to the event experience, Cairns Convention Centre has installed a large format 15-metre screen with three projector blends, offering a wider expanse of horizontal screen space, enabling multiple contents simultaneously displayed.

This significant upgrade creates an immersive event environment, enabling presenters to run content side-by-side without the need for additional screens.

Light and sound transform delegates’ experience

Large-scale, high-resolution LED walls and displays are a standout feature of the Centre’s technology experience. The LED displays offer unparalleled flexibility in content delivery and creates a visually stunning backdrop, further enhancing audience engagement and elevating the overall conference and event experience.

Rounding out the high-tech upgrade is the enhancement of sound through the installation of Meyer Sound Galileo GALAXY networking processors. This now sees the Centre as “immersive ready” with the Spacemap Go immersive mixing functionality included within the GALAXY system.

The Centre’s in-house AV technology team combine best practice, creativity, and a passion for success to bring every event to life, ensuring that audiences are connected and inspired.

Continuing with the technology-first approach, Cairns Convention Centre has developed an interactive, immersive virtual reality experience for meeting planners. The virtual reality experience can be viewed through custom-designed VR goggles, as well as without.

The virtual reality experience gives planners a realistic view of Cairns Convention Centre and fosters a sense of connection to the wonder of one of the world’s most beautiful destinations.

Sustainable design spotlights tropical North Queensland

Located between two World Heritage listed areas, the Great Barrier Reef and Wet Tropics Rainforest, every aspect of the redevelopment and expansion have been carefully considered to ensure it maintains stringent environmental controls.  From the design of the venue, and the use of the latest energy-efficient technologies to the adoption of sustainable operating practices.

The 130m long façade of the expansion is animated by a sunscreen that responds to the activities inside the Centre and is orientated to respond to the sun’s path. The external screens have been calculated to resolve the sun angles as it rise throughout the day and at different times of the year.

Cairns Convention Centre’s carefully considered sustainable approach takes cues from the adoption of a passive design strategy that uses ambient energy sources instead of purchased energy like electricity or natural gas.

These strategies include daylighting, natural ventilation, and solar energy. The 130m long façade of the expansion is animated by a sunscreen that responds to the activities inside the Centre and is orientated to respond to the sun’s path, an important feature of a passive sustainability approach.

Designed to showcase Cairns’ showstopping surroundings, Cox Architecture orchestrated the development to ensure the Centre’s key venues – The Trinity Room and Terrace Level become a meeting place for delegates to embrace views over Trinity Inlet and mountain ranges. Whilst the biophilic design of the Porte Cochere features a green living façade and landscaping with 50% natives planted, supporting local biodiversity.

Local resources on show

Renewable and reclaimed timber materials have been sourced from Indigenous communities in Weipa using trees that have been felled in the mining process. The Indigenous community in Weipa reclaimed the trees, allowing the architecture to incorporate them within the Centre’s façade.

Marble and stone were sourced from Chillagoe quarries in Far North Queensland.

The interior design intent contributes to the uniqueness of the Centre through the collaboration with Australian manufacturer “Ontera” who were selected to develop a bespoke design evocative of the seagrass and the turtle feeding grounds surrounding Cairns.

Sustainable initiatives at the heart of Cairns Convention Centre

Beyond sustainable design, Cairns Convention Centre has demonstrated its commitment to sustainability by partnering with Business Events Cairns & Great Barrier Reef to launch an innovative destination carbon offset program. In conjunction with Australian-based platform Reforest and environmental management organisation Terrain, the Reforest program will facilitate the revegetation of the Wongabel Mabi Rainforest near Cairns, which had previously been cleared for forestry and agriculture.

Cairns Convention Centre sits at the heart of one of the world’s most beautiful and renowned eco-tourism destinations, seamlessly blending with the city’s sophisticated tropical environment. Cairns Convention Centre evokes Far North Queensland sensibilities, with the Centre spacious, generous and flexible, yet intimate at the same time.

Find out more about the expansion here, or contact

Wayne Smith
Business Development Director
[email protected]


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *