Accom wrap: New heights for Gold Coast, Barangaroo, Crowne and Mantra

All new developments along The Spit on Queensland’s Gold Coast will be restricted to a three-storeys following community feedback on the future of the 140-acre stretch of waterfront.

The state government has changed its proposed master plan following more than 23,000 pieces of feedback submitted during an 18-month planning process.

Proposals for the site included turning some 140 hectares of The Spit’s 201 hectares into an ocean park with light rail stations, super-yacht berths and an ocean cruise ship terminal.

Developer Sunland had originally a proposed $600 million residential project on the site which included two 44-storey towers but withdrew the application as the Spit plans were in the drafting process.

Last month Sunland put the 3.9-hectare Mariner’s Cove retail village and marina precinct on the market.

Now amendments have been made to the Planning Regulation 2017 to prohibit development over three-storeys, or 15 metres.

Minister for Planning Cameron Dick said of the changes: “The message was clear: the community broadly supported a three-storey height limit being imposed,” he said.

“The new regulation delivers on our commitment to support the community’s expectation for low-rise development on The Spit.

“The height limit will apply to buildings and structures within the building height control area, including Sea World, Sheraton Mirage and all land south towards Southport Yacht Club.

“Outdoor rides within Sea World will be exempt from the height limit, however, new buildings in the theme park will have to adhere to the three-storey limit.”

Mackay Mantra

The Mantra Mackay. Image supplied

Central Queensland favourite the Mackay Marina Hotel will be run by Accor and rebranded the Mantra Mackay under an agreement with the property’s new owners, Mandala Asset Solutions.

The eight-storey, 79-room hotel is Mackay’s only hotel with marina views and features a restaurant and bar, fitness centre, swimming pool, four conference and meetings rooms and a business centre.

Accor Chief Operating Officer Pacific, Simon McGrath, said the acquisition allowed the group to increase its footprint in one of Queensland’s fastest growing coastal cities.

“Mantra Mackay is one of the best properties in Mackay and this acquisition speaks to our confidence in the city’s future and the importance of securing well positioned product in market,” said Mr McGrath.

“We…believe it has great potential to service a number of markets.”

Barangaroo milestone

Barangaroo South in Sydney’s CBD has been named by the federal government as Australia’s first carbon-neutral precinct.

The 7.5 ha site, which includes the under-construction six-star Crown Sydney hotel, has been jointly developed by the New South Wales government and Lendlease.

The development also comprises commercial, residential, retail, restaurant and bar elements, with buildings designed to meet climate positive targets and carbon neutrality.

They include features like a district cooling plant that saves close to 40 Olympic-sized swimming pools of water each year, and a waste management system that has diverted more than 5,400 tonnes of waste from landfills over the past three years.

Steve McCann, Lendlease group CEO, said: “We’ve been creating carbon-neutral buildings and places long before it became industry practice. Our approach to sustainability is a key differentiator for us and has helped us secure our pipeline projects around the world.”

Coogee conferencing

A render of the new Crowne Coogee lobby. Image supplied

The landmark Crowne Plaza Sydney Coogee Beach has unveiled plans for a multi-million-dollar refurbishment designed to re-position the property as a leading meetings and events hotel for the city.

The changes include a purpose-built events centre, ten new flexible meetings spaces and new event dining concepts and menus.

As part of the re-design, the hotel’s 209 guest rooms will get a freshen up reflective of its seaside location, including a complete re-fit of all the bathrooms.  Ten new guestrooms will also be added to the hotel.

The first phase of the re-design will be completed in early January and will encompass half of the guest rooms, a new lobby and the Studio – an area which can be used either as a meeting or event space or shared work space.

The hotel’s area general manager, Gareth Long, said: “In terms of location, the Crowne Plaza Sydney Coogee Beach is second to none. What we can now offer guests is much more flexibility when it comes to staying here on business, with upgraded technology, smarter use of our social spaces and responding better to the changing ways in which people do business.

“We’ve been buoyed by the amount of interest and excitement in our new meeting spaces and offerings, and we’re already seeing strong interest coming through for 2020 and beyond.”

Phase two of the re-design will be completed by September 2020 and includes the remainder of the guestrooms, the hotel exterior and the pool area.

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