Queensland Tourism Industry Development Minister, Kate Jones, has officially opened the AUD$10 million Sunshine Coast Convention Centre at Novotel Twin Waters Resort.

Positioned in the grounds of the Novotel Twin Waters Resort, the convention centre has been purpose-built by Shakespeare Property Group, who purchased the Resort in September 2018 for $100 million.

Minister Jones was joined for a formal ribbon cutting ceremony by Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson, Shakespeare Property Group Chairman Cheng King Law, Shakespeare Property Group Managing Director Yak Yong Quek and Accor Chief Operating Officer, Pacific Simon McGrath.

Jones said the 3,300 square metre convention centre, capable of hosting more than 2,700 delegates, would be a game-changer for the region.

“This centre has enough capacity to house 200 trade stands at once. It will be instrumental in securing events the Sunshine Coast has never been able to host in the past,” she said.

“With the expansion of the Sunshine Coast airport and millions of dollars in new tourism infrastructure developments under way, the local tourism industry is booming.”

“I look forward to coming back in November this year when the convention centre will come alive for Queensland’s leading tourism industry event, the DestinationQ Forum, which will again be held alongside the Queensland Tourism Awards.”

Shakespeare Property Group have set the ambitious goal of increasing delegate numbers to the new convention centre by 30% within two years. Shakespeare Property Group managing director Yak Yong Quek said the company was proud to expand its operation on the Sunshine Coast.

“Shakespeare prides itself on being a proactive investor. Our style is to invest, improve and evolve product to ensure we are leading the market,” he said.

“To complement the delivery of this state-of-the-art convention centre we have also committed to extensive upgrading of the hotel lobby, food and beverage facilities. These works will commence imminently and will be completed by October 2019.

“This upgrade will not only benefit our guests to the resort, but will create opportunities for the local economy and the community through employment and superior facilities to be enjoyed by all.

“This next phase continues to be supportive of our broader vision to create fresh opportunities for the economic and cultural growth of the community and our partnership with Accor will ensure the delivery of this vision.”

Accor Chief Operating Officer Pacific, Simon McGrath said: “We look forward to continuing our successful partnership with Shakespeare Property Group with the management of the Sunshine Coast Convention Centre at Novotel Twin Waters Resort.

“Accor has strong experience in operating convention centres and premium meeting spaces at home and abroad.

“We are confident that this new convention facility, supported by our strong network of hotels in Queensland’s South East and beyond, will drive visitor growth to the Sunshine Coast, create jobs, support local businesses and deliver broader economic benefits to the region as a whole,” he said.

The new-build Sunshine Coast Convention Centre, located within Novotel Twin Waters Resort, will offer a choice of six different dynamic meeting and event spaces across 3300sqm. The new Minyama room will cater for 1,500 delegates theatre style, or 1,000 banquet style.

The convention centre has been designed to seamlessly attach to the Wandiny Pavilion, an existing conference space located on the resort site. The Wandiny Pavilion can facilitate up to 1,200 delegates theatre style, or 80 exhibition booths (3×2 metres) making it an extremely versatile business events venue and taking the convention centre’s overall capacity to 2,700 people.

The new Minyama and Wandiny function rooms acknowledge the local Indigenous Gubbi Gubbi people. Meeting and events delegates will enjoy access to the natural bushland and surrounding ocean, river and lagoon water features accessing playing fields and two premium golf courses.

James Wilkinson

Editor-In-Chief, Hotel Management