Gold Coast Residents Oppose Hotel Plan

Plans for a signature floating hotel in Gold Coast could pose a threat to the local marine environment, says a community group opposed to plans to develop a massive mixed-use tourism and leisure complex in the popular Australian resort town. The group also accuses the Queensland government of violating due process in granting approval to the complex.

Gold Coast community groups and backers of a mixed-use resort complex and cruise ship terminal with a casino are headed for a clash over plans for one of the project’s signature hotels.

Plan for the Chinese-backed ASF Broadwater Marine complex in the popular Australian tourist town include the Sea Pearl Hotel, a floating hotel shaped like a giant pearl which renowned Chinese architect Jianping Zheng has signed on to build. The hotel would have 300 rooms, shopping malls, a casino, a swimming pool, a sightseeing deck, luxury suites in smaller pods alongside the main hotel and an underwater tunnel.

Zheng believes the southern side of the Broadwater complex would be the perfect site for the hotel. However, many local residents opposed to the terminal say the site is a roost for migratory birds and are concerned the hotel’s colored beam night lights could affect marine life.

“The ASF project has opened the flood gates for the area,” said Steve Gration, head of Save Our Spit. “Because due process was not followed by the state government for this project, overseas investors have got the message that the city is easy prey.”

The Queensland government has granted Broadwater preliminary approval, although Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate has said no formal proposal for the hotel has been put forward to the local council.