Provan sells Caloundra resort
ONE of the largest hospitality and leisure companies in the Asia-South Pacific has bought rugby league immortal Norm Provan's Oasis Resort at Caloundra.
Minor International is a Thailand-based hotel owner, operator and investor controlling 8500 rooms across 70 hotels, resorts and serviced suites under the Anantara, Marriott, Four Seasons, Elewana, Oaks and Minor International brands.
It plans an immediate $3.5 million capital investment in refurbishment of bars, conference rooms and accommodation.
Oaks Australia head, Maroochydore-based Brett Pointon, who is inspecting properties with Minor International representatives from Thailand, said the development of a water park was being considered to brand Oasis as a family resort.
The property at Golden Beach sits on a 4ha site of which only two hectares are occupied by the resort.
Mr Pointon said Oasis was an iconic property in a great location and well worth developing.
The resort, which includes 158 hotel rooms, resort facilities including a restaurant and 23 apartments, has been managed under Rydges Resorts for the past 10 years.
The new owners will take over on July 10. Minor International operates in 10 countries - Thailand, the Maldives, Indonesia, the United Arab Emirates, Vietnam, Tanzania, Kenya, Sri Lanka, Australia and New Zealand.
Mr Provan, who with his wife Lindy began building the staged development in the late 1980s, described the sale as something he did not like to do, but had to.
He said he lacked the capital to hold on to the business during present tough economic times.
"We've been struggling for a while as a consequence of the high Australian dollar affecting holiday makers from overseas," Mr Provan said.
Oasis general manager Rino Canto said Rydges Resort Group was sad to lose one of its flagships, but the sale was clearly in the Provans' best interests.
The Provans, who live at Mooloolah, retain business interests in Hervey Bay.