A CAMPAIGN run by the Papua New Guinea Tourism Promotion Authority has been named as a 2015 Gold Award winner by the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA).

Announced in July, the award recognised the success of the 2014 “PNG Pop-Up Village campaign run by the North America office of the TPA in 2014.

Campaign highlights included PNG cultural ambassadors Mundiya Kepanga and Fabian Paino donning their traditional finery visiting popular sites and interacting with curious New Yorkers.

Mr Kepanga and Mr Paino dressed respectively in Huli tribal dress and a ceremonial New Ireland Malagan mask, caused a media sensation both internationally and at home in PNG, TPA said.

The spectacle successfully drew attention to the “PNG Pop Up Village” that provided travel information to PNG, including a stunning display of arts and crafts.

In addition the campaign included guest presentations by renowned Smithsonian ornithologist Bruce Beehler and famous French photojournalist Marc Dozier, TPA said.

PNG’s 2015 PATA Gold Award is for the category of Marketing Media – Public Relations Campaign.

TPA representatives will join up to 30 other winners for the award presentation at the PATA Travel Mart in Bangalore, India on 8 September, 2015.

This represents the third PATA Gold Award TPA has been presented with, the first two awards were presented in 2013 for the ‘What Tribe Are You?’ campaign – another successful initiative by TPA’s North America team.

PATA chief executive Mario Hardy congratulated award winners in what he said was a competitive field.

The Grand Award for Marketing was presented to the Hong Kong Tourism Board for its “Follow Me to Hong Kong” campaign, which enlisted the help of Russian couple Murad Osmann and Natalia Zakharova, who together have a dedicated following on social media application Instagram.

The couple were invited to Hong Kong to share images of the city with their followers.