Written by Martin Massini – 24/10/15
A $10 million indoor skydiving facility, mooted for the Gold Coast in June, is set to join the line-up of recreation businesses in Surfers Paradise.
The venue is only the second in Australia — the first opened in Sydney in March.
It is being established by Indoor Skydive Australia Group which gained council approval for the facility in late August.
It will be located on a 1326sq m property at 3082-3084 Surfers Paradise Blvd where work has started for the new facility, whose centrepiece will be a 3.66m-high glass wind tunnel.
ISAG, a listed company, holds the property under a 20-year lease with two 10-year options that was negotiated by Doug Garvie, of Savills Gold Coast, on behalf of owners Loraine and Joseph Gorski.
“The finer details of the lease remain confidential but I can say that the facility will be a fabulous attraction and a significant addition to the Gold Coast tourism offering, and more particularly that of Surfers Paradise,” Mr Garvie said.
“The venue will operate under the brand iFLY and ISAG intends to add value to the property, building on the site a three-storey facility that will simulate the free-fall experience of skydiving “
Mr Garvie said the company is expanding and plans to establish facilities in Adelaide, Perth and Melbourne in the next two years.
According to ISAG’s annual report, people aged 10 to 19 constitute 25 per cent of patrons at its Penrith facility.
ISAG chief executive Wayne Jones said Gold Coast visitor numbers were rising, making the timing perfect for the new venue, which is expected to open in the second half of next year.
“The Gold Coast is the adrenalin capital of Australia and the venue will be an excellent fit,” he said.
ISAG said fabrication of wind-tunnel components is on track for completion in late January.
Mayor Tom Tate said the city council “is committed to supporting development of new attractions on the Gold Coast and the new facility is a prime example of the city growing and adapting its tourism offerings”.
“Tourism on the Gold Coast sustains 30,000 jobs and adds $4.6 billion to the economy, so it is crucial that the city does what it can to retain its enviable status as a world-class tourism destination,” he said.
The first stage of siteworks, preparations for foundations and services, involves demolition of structures and removal of bitumen and fill.
At the same time, work is being undertaken to transform the interior of a building on the site to provide for retail premises along the street frontage.
ISAG said that its intention is to generate ancillary revenue from the retail premises ahead of completion of the skydiving facility.
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