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Destination Brisbane Consortium, creating the ultimate leisure destination?

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Two parties are vying for the right to develop the Queen’s Wharf site in Brisbane, with the scheme being hailed as the ‘best integrated resort in Australia’.

Echo Entertainment Group (EEG) – working in conjunction with Chow Tai Fook Enterprises and Far East Consortium International Limited – is up against Crown/Greenland: a group headed up by casino tycoon James Packer, Crown CEO, and Chinese development firm Greenland. The two groups are bidding to develop the Queen’s Wharf site for the ‘Destination Brisbane Consortium’ (DBC).

Plans revealed by EEG for the site currently include:

12 football fields of public event space

Unique attractions including a water and light show playing several times each night in the new “River Arena”A theatre complex

Riverfront moonlight cinema Fifty restaurants and bars

Five new premium hotel brands, three six-star venues, including Ritz-Carlton and Rosewood An “Arc” building

A Sky Deck, with restaurants and bars fully accessible to the public

Plans revealed by Crown/Greenland are remarkably similar: A six star hotel

Two five star hotelsAround fifty restaurants and bars

Public spaces, with a waterfall bridgeA Cinema and theatre complex

A water parkA casino

To build this new mega resort EEG has proposed to enlist the help of several top architecture firms, including Las Vegas-based Steelman Partners, known for large scale hospitality projects such as the Galaxy Macau and the MGM Grand; London based Grimshaw who create internationally renowned projects worldwide; and US firm, The Jerde Partnership, which specialises in ‘placemaking’ for the hospitality and attractions sectors.

Crown/Greenland have also got some architectural heavyweights in the running, including global design firm Woods Bagot, Australian outfit Bates Smart, Dutch practice UN Studio, Tierra Design and RPS.

EEG chair John O’Neill commented that the Queen’s Wharf development should be “arguably the most significant redevelopment project in the history of the Brisbane CBD”.

If the plans go ahead the project is expected to deliver an additional 1.39 million overnight tourist visitors to Queensland from its opening, potentially having a huge impact on tourism by opening up access to Brisbane from China and the rest of Asia.

DBC is also teaming up with TAFE Queensland to offer a ‘Hotel & Hospitality School’ on the new site. If DBC’s bid for transforming Queen’s Wharf is successful, training may be offered for up to 11,000 team members with opportunities for first hand experience and apprenticeships on site.

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Two parties are vying for the right to develop the Queen’s Wharf site in Brisbane, with the scheme being hailed as the ‘best integrated resort in Australia’.
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