Australia Resorts Upgrading to Woo Asia Tourists

Australia’s IRs have been upgrading their facilities to capture a greater proportion of the expanding China outbound tourism market, as competition around Asia grows.

On Wednesday, the Star Entertainment Group said it has filed a development application for a US$500 million project to bring a Ritz Carlton hotel to Sydney, significantly expanding amenities at its existing property in the city.

The application, which was filed with the New South Wales Department of Planning, includes more food and beverage options and a neighborhood center. Star is building the project with Hong Kong-based Chow Tai Fook Holdings and Far East Consortium, which are also its partners in a major redevelopment of the Queen’s Wharf in central Brisbane.

Architects FJMT, led by Richard Francis-Jones, won a Design Excellence Competition in December 2016 to secure the rights to design the tower.

Star CEO, Matt Bekier said the development will help Sydney to meet an expected surge in tourism arrivals to Australia.

“Forecasts suggest Australia’s current visitation of around 8.3 million international visitors per annum will rise to 15 million a year inside a decade.

“To cater for that demand, we need the necessary tourism infrastructure. Sydney lacks sufficient high-end hotels to meet this wave of international tourist demand, led by the rapidly expanding wealthy Chinese middle-class demographic.” (AGB)