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Old Airlie icon resurrected with new hotel and tourist park

By Lala Echevarria

A NEW hotel and tourist park complete with pool, restaurant and beer garden could soon be approved as part of a larger development that will bring a former Airlie Beach icon back to life.

A vacant 3.6ha lot has been earmarked for development at 6 Pandanus Drive in Cannonvale, behind Bunnings Warehouse.

The application is made up of three different aspects; a temporary food and drink outlet in the form of a mobile food vehicle, a tourist park and a hotel.

The site was previously developed for a hotel and short-term accommodation, known as Reefo’s Backpackers, which had more than 300 beds and 80 cabins.

The backpackers was demolished in 2009 and concrete footpaths are now all that remains on the site.

The first stage of the renewed Reefo’s Backpackers got the green light in May this year when the council approved a material change of use and site reconfiguration.

Whitsunday Regional Council approved a development application for Reefo’s Resort in Cannonvale in July. Picture: Supplied

Approvals outlined plans for 54 bungalows to be built on the site — 13 one-bedrooms, 38 two-bedrooms and three three-bedroom.

The new application to come before the council is for stage two of the development, which will include 25 cabins that “seeks to attract families to the area for holidays rather than the typical short-term ‘hotel’ guest”.

It would also include housekeeping and laundry facilities, parking spaces and the landscaping of communal open space.

The application says the tourist park “will be of a contemporary design and orientated within the landscape to create a visually pleasant and interesting environment for guests and onlookers”.

The application includes 25 cabins, adding to the 54 bungalows of the proposed Reefo’s resort. Picture: Supplied.

This development application also includes the construction of a hotel, which will be known as the Royal Cannonvale Hotel, that includes a bar and bistro, outdoor dining area, TAB, games room and children’s playroom.

The application also outlines space for a beer garden and swimming pool with a 20m lap pool and separate rooms on the first level for private parties.

A food and drink truck was also proposed as part of the application that would operate from the site for two years during construction, providing food and refreshments for workers as well as other customers.

Plans for the Royal Cannonvale Hotel will be discussed at the council meeting on Tuesday. Picture: Supplied

While the applicant proposed to build the hotel first, followed immediately after by the tourist park, they may decide to construct both at the same time.

When Reefo’s Resort Tourist Park and the Royal Cannonvale Hotel construction works are complete, the food vehicle will leave the site.

The development will include a 117-space car park, which is one less than the council requires for the estimated demand on the development.

The Royal Cannonvale Hotel will also have a TAB, kids play room and function areas. Picture: Supplied.

Council officers issued the applicants with a request for more information in July to clarify elevation plans for the hotel as well as alternative positions on the site for the gaming lounge.

They also pushed for more information about internal carparks, revised water connections and stormwater infrastructure.

The development will be discussed at the ordinary council meeting in Proserpine on Tuesday.

Source: Whitsunday Times

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