Hyatt lures Palmer
FORGET the billion dollar mining operations, the hole in the ground Clive Palmer cares about is in the middle of a green.
Queensland's richest man has unconditionally agreed to buy Hyatt Regency Coolum after approaching owners Lend Lease and Sekisui House.
Neither Mr Palmer's spokesman nor the former owners would discuss how much it cost for him to take the deeds. It is understood the mining mogul has a property in the exclusive enclave that is The Lakes and is a regular at the Hyatt.
His son Michael is also known to be an experienced golfer well versed on the resort course.
One resident builder who lives in the adjoining estate said Mr Palmer's involvement would be a boost to the resort's profile.
“His name and brand will be a good thing,” he said.
“The media will spread the word about it and it will pick up.
“I think he'll do a better job than those who had the Hyatt.”
The Hyatt will stay as resort manager while Lend Lease and Sekisui House will continue work on the master planned residential area.
Mr Palmer said it was his first venture into tourism, although Queensland Nickel – a company taken over by Mr Palmer – bought the closed down Avica Resort and Spa on the Gold Coast last year.
He said the purchase of the Hyatt Regency allowed him to help our tourism sector, struggling as a result of the economic downturn.
“We have plans to increase the occupancy of the Hyatt Regency and make it one of the best resorts in the world,” Mr Palmer said.
“The Hyatt Regency is one of the state's leading resorts and has a rich history.”
The golf course hosts the Australian PGA golf tournament each November.