The Northern Territory’s tourism industry is being given a massive boost by the creation of a world-class resort next to Darwin International Airport.
A second substantial investment into the project has been confirmed by Airport Development Group (ADG), the go-ahead company that ultimately owns Darwin, Alice Springs and Tennant Creek airports.
The business bought the Mercure and Novotel hotels in the airport grounds in 2021.
Work on creating the resort began almost immediately and has already transformed some accommodation at the property – bespoke villas and luxury family accommodation are now available.
Plans for the next phase of the redevelopment have been finalised and include a stunning lagoon pool and children’s play area, bars, restaurants, and conference facilities, all complemented by extensive tropical landscaping.
A recreation vehicle park is also included.
ADG’s Executive General Manager Customer and Strategy Selwyn D’Souza believes the new resort will complement the growth of the Territory’s tourist industry.
“We are seeing tourism bounce back in the Territory,” he says.
For instance, visitor numbers for April were more than 10 percent above those recorded for the same period in the pre-covid year 2019, which shows that the industry is rebounding from the pandemic.
“This is great news for the Territory and we expect our new resort to support this growth by providing a broad range of accommodation options and superior customer experience.”
ADG has a reputation as a good corporate citizen and community minded company.
As part of its commitment to supporting Territory business, Mr D’Souza says engaging local contractors for the project has been a priority.
“We have been working closely with numerous local contractors to deliver the project to the highest standard and we are delighted with the progress to date,” he says.
Once complete the resort will offer a wide range of accommodation, conference and leisure options, conveniently located adjacent to the airport and close to the city, while providing a base from which to explore all the attractions the Top End offers.
ADG Chief Executive Tony Edmondstone says the vision is to provide visitors to the resort with an experience that reflects all the Territory has to offer – “our unique lifestyle, ancient cultures and stunning landscapes”.
“This investment demonstrates the confidence we have in the long-term future of tourism in the Territory,” he says.
Larrakia Nation provided Indigenous artwork for use in the concept drawings.
And it has been decided that the new resort will be enriched with Aboriginal art and themes, inside and out.
The resort, which is expected to be completed in mid-2023, is part of an airport masterplan to create a “metropolis” at Darwin Airport with business, retail and entertainment hubs across an area which already houses everything from Bunnings to a dog day care centre.
The airport covers 310 hectares with approximately 80 hectares still available for development.
ADG is working on a plan to make the airport and all the businesses within Darwin Airport Central carbon neutral within five years.
The airport intends to extend its 10MW solar capacity by fitting solar panels on the roofs of the terminal car parks.