Visitors to Queensland for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games faced increased room rates as hotel operators cashed in on the visitor boom.
The Gold Coast’s hotel performance was largely driven by high rate premiums during the event, which ran from April 4 to April 15.
According to a report from research group STR, the average daily rate came in at $347.38 – a 76 per cent increase over the same 12-day period in 2017.
The market’s growth in revenue per available room exceeded 100 per cent most nights during the event, with the peak level occurring the night of the opening ceremony on April 4 – jumping 205.4 per cent to $294.26.
The spike in average daily rate and revenue per available room occurred despite the fact that Gold Coast hotels did not register at-capacity occupancy levels.
The market experienced its highest occupancy level (92.8 per cent) on the night of the closing ceremony, and the average level during the event (86.6 per cent) fell short of the average in Glasgow (95.7 per cent). However, with different market sizes, the Gold Coast sold 99,466 more room nights.
“While it’s encouraging to see that Queensland hotels capitalised on the Commonwealth Games, the lasting legacy could have an even greater impact on the market’s future,” said Matthew Burke, STR’s Pacific manager.
“As Southeast Queensland continues exploring the prospect of bidding to host the 2032 Olympics, the results of this year’s Commonwealth Games will likely play a big role in the ultimate decision.”
Queensland’s Minister for the Commonwealth Games Kate Jones said ticket sales exceeded pre-Games expectations with 1.21 million tickets sold in total.
“While a high number of those ticketholders were from southeast Queensland, people came from every state and territory in Australia and across the Commonwealth to cheer on the athletes and attend Games-related activities.”
Jones said that data showed around 1.2 million people spent $870 million in Queensland during, before and after the event.
Compared with other recent host markets of the Commonwealth Games, Gold Coast hotels recorded the highest absolute revenue per available room level during the event when measured in U.S. dollar constant currency according to STR.
|Gold Coast||2018||US $243.23|
|New Delhi||2010||US $112.87|
Queensland’s population hits 5 million people today
Queensland’s population has tipped the 5 million mark today, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has told State Parliament.
Ms Palaszczuk said several expectant families were on standby to welcome the state’s five-millionth resident.
“Somewhere today a brand new mum and dad will be eager to meet their new arrival,” she told the house.
“The whole family will want to know: is it a boy or is it a girl? And the doctor will say, ‘congratulations, it’s a Queenslander’.”
Ms Palaszczuk said the two main drivers of the increase were migration growth, particularly from New South Wales, and from 60,000 babies being born in the past year.
PHOTO: The state’s five-millionth resident was born today.(ABC North Queensland: Nathalie Fernbach)
“Overseas and interstate migration is up by 50,000 people in the past year, 19,000 came from interstate … more than 12,000, or 230 a week, move from New South Wales to Queensland,” she said.
ABS data also revealed the fastest and largest-growing area in Queensland in 2016-17 was Pimpama on the Gold Coast, which grew by 3,000 people.
Large growth also occurred in Jimboomba on Brisbane’s south side and in North Lakes — a suburb north of the city — which both increased by 2,100 people.
Coomera on the Gold Coast and Springfield Lakes in Ipswich also experienced large growth up 1,400 people.
The State Government’s population counter gives a “synthetic estimate” of the number of current Queenslanders, assuming a total population increase of one person every 6 minutes and 22 seconds.
Earlier this year the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) said Queensland’s population was growing at 1.7 per cent and was projected to tick over to 5 million in May.
ABS data released in March also revealed Brisbane was one of the country’s fastest-growing cities and had increased by 48,000 in 2017, hitting 2.4 million people.
ABS demography director Anthony Grubb said the state’s population had “come a long way” in the last century.
“In 1901 the population was half a million; a tenth of what it is today… it took 37 years to hit the 1 million milestone in 1938 and another 36 years to reach 2 million in 1974,” he said.
But Mr Grubb said population growth “picked up the pace” after that, taking just 18 years to reach 3 million then only another 14 years to hit 4 million in 2006.
Queensland could be leading growth state in future
Population demographer Dr Elin Charles-Edwards said although Queensland is not currently the fastest growing state, it is possible it could top the leader board later down the track.
‘Not in the short-term, but Queensland is coming up off a relatively subdued growth so perhaps we might be entering an era of more rapid growth,” she said.
Dr Charles-Edwards said the challenges that generally come with increased population could be managed in Queensland.
“As long as we keep up and don’t take our eye off the ball we can continue to absorb quite high levels of growth… but really it’s keeping up with the infrastructure that’s the key challenge,” she said.
Dr Charles-Edwards said it was important to note some parts of the state, particularly in western Queensland, were experiencing population decline.
“While the south-east corner is growing and also many Indigenous communities are growing, other parts of the state are shrinking,” she said.
“Perhaps we could do more to encourage people to move outside the south-east corner.
“If we were able to work out some way to decentralise our population, growth a little bit further up into the northern regional centres, I think that would benefit the growth of south-east Queensland.”
Gold Coast beachside unit block fetches more than $2m at auction
A MERMAID Beach unit block attracted buyers from as far as New Zealand and Japan when it went under the hammer on the weekend.
But a local buyer made the winning bid, snapping up the four beachside units at 109 Seagull Ave for $2.105 million.
Marketing agent Peter Howarth, of John Henderson Professionals Mermaid Beach, said there were 18 registered bidders on the day with two phoning from overseas.
“More than 80 people came to watch the auction, which was conducted by Mark MacCabe from Apollo Auctions, and there was plenty of spirited bidding before it became a battle between two parties,” he said.
“The winning bidder was a long-time Gold Coast resident, who owns several properties in the region.
“The purchaser intends to initially land bank while they complete a feasibility study to determine the best development option for the property.”
Mr Howarth said the 558sq m property was considered large for Mermaid Beach with a 32m frontage to Heron Ave and 17m frontage to Seagull Ave.
It now has four strata-titled units.
“Subject to council approval, you could design four, three-storey villas on the site…,” he said.
The property is in a prime position, 150m from the beach and close to the popular Nobby Beach dining precinct.
Budget to rein in property prices with measures to increase housing supply
TREASURER Scott Morrison’s Budget offered little for home seekers wanting an immediate boost to their prospects of buying property but buyers will benefit from some key measures in the long run.
FEARS this year’s Federal Budget would include changes to negative gearing or capital gains tax on homes sales have proved unfounded and Treasurer Scott Morrison has instead taken a largely hands off approach to the housing market.
The Budget offered little in the way of major announcements for homeowners, investors or prospective buyers, with much of the real estate focus on measures to better increase housing supply.
The lack of major property tax changes suggested the Government felt confident last year’s Budget measures to crack down on investment activity and foreign spending had the desired affect of calming home prices, particularly in Sydney and Melbourne.
Median home prices have fallen for the last nine months in Sydney and the last five in Melbourne, the latest CoreLogic research showed.
First homebuyer participation in the housing market, meanwhile, has reached a five-year high nationally.
By leaving the current property taxing system largely untouched, Mr Morrison would have calmed the concerns of much of the real estate and development industry, who had feared the government might cave into strong pressure to overhaul negative gearing.
Mr Morrison also offered another surprise by leaving capital gains charges for sellers untouched.
Mr Morrison has instead offered other measures to boost housing supply — a key determinant of prices.
This included a commitment to establish the $1 billion National Housing Finance and Investment Corporation and release more land suitable for housing.
The Budget’s allocation of billions of dollars in transport infrastructure upgrades would also help unlock cheaper housing in further-flung regional areas by making them more accessible, according to realestate.com.au chief economist Nerida Conisbee.
She said the Budget commitment to spend $1 billion on an Urban Congestion Fund to reduce traffic, along with a $3.5 billion Roads of Strategic Importance initiative, would be key measures in boosting demand for cheaper regional housing.
“Traffic traditionally influences liveability and discourages people from living in further out areas, so this may have an eventual impact on affordability,” she said.
Other major projects with the potential to draw more house hunters into cheaper regional areas included the Federal Government’s funding of the first stage of the North South Rail Link in Western Sydney, a commitment of up to $5 billion to the Melbourne Airport Rail Link and $3.3 billion in continued upgrades of the Bruce Highway in Queensland.
Among one of the only real estate cuts was a drop in funding to state affordable housing services. The Commonwealth committed $1.6 billio n this year to support the services, a roughly $295 million drop from last year’s Budget.
Real Estate Institute of Australia president Malcolm Gunning said the Government doing nothing to change negative gearing represented an “ideal” outcome for the housing market, considering the stringent changes introduced last year to quell investor demand.
“The Government already has its hands around the golden goose. It needs to be careful not to strangle it,” he said.
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