Hamilton Island’s owner and one of Australia’s most accomplished businessmen, Bob Oatley, has been recognised in the Australia Day honours list.
Oatley was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for his distinguished service to the Australian wine and tourism industries, to the sport of yacht racing, and to the community as a supporter of medical research and visual arts organisations.
“I’m exceptionally humbled by this recognition,” he said. “To share my passions of wine, sailing and Hamilton Island, as well as my good fortunes to aid cancer research and visual arts with the people of Australia, gives me immense pleasure and pride.
“I am a proud Australian, so to be awarded the Order of Australia is a great honour,” he said.
Having established the world-renowned winery Rosemount Estate in 1969, Oatley is credited with placing Australian wine on the global stage, pioneering new wine styles and methods of marketing. It was in 2006, at 80 years old, that he established Robert Oatley Vineyards, based in Mudgee, NSW. Today, Robert Oatley Vineyards is distributed internationally and is one of Australia’s fastest growing family-owned wineries, testament to the Oatley’s long-term commitment to the Australian wine industry.
Acquiring the popular Australian tourist destination Hamilton Island in 2003, Oatley together with his family, have committed significant funds to improve the Island’s infrastructure and facilities, transforming it into the world-class and award-winning tourist destination it is today. His vision has seen the development of the luxury five-star resort, qualia, which has received a host of international awards.
His philanthropic endeavours include donating much needed funds to cancer research and the donation of the portrait of Captain Cook to the Portrait Gallery in Canberra, for all Australians to enjoy.