Marina, more rooms for resort complex By MAIKELI SERU Major Papua New Guinea investment is expected to transform one of Fiji’s original integrated tourism resort areas. This follows confirmation of
22 Oct 2012 10:53

An artist’s impression of planned development at The Pearl South Pacific Resort at Pacific Harbour.

Marina, more rooms for resort complex


Major Papua New Guinea investment is expected to transform one of Fiji’s original integrated tourism resort areas.
This follows confirmation of expansion plans by the new owners of The Pearl South Pacific Resort, Spa and Championship Golf Course at Pacific Harbour, Deuba.
New owners, Mineral Resources Development Corporation (MRDC),of Papua New Guinea, revealed exciting and new plans for the resort that could attract mega-tourism dollars into the economy.
This includes developing an international-standard marina at The Pearl, expanding the resort into a 200-room complex and boosting conference, dining and spa facilities.
MRDC managing director Augustine Mano, while speaking to guests during the launch of the resort’s Marina Development Plan on Saturday night at Pacific Harbour, said Fiji was the best place to trial their investment in tourism before they expanded around the region.
“The Pearl South Pacific Resort, Spa and Championship Golf Course is the first of many visions MRDC and its subsidiaries have for Fiji and the Pacific region,” Mr Mano said.
The launch was attended by a lineup of big names from Fiji, Papua New Guinea and the region.
They included PNG Prime Minister, Peter O’Neill, Fiji President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, Cook Islands Prime Minister,  Henry Puna, Fiji  Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ratu Inoke Kubuabola,  PNG Minister for Justice and Attorney-General  Kerega Kua, PNG Minister for Transport Ano Pala, PNG Minister for Works Francis Awesa, PNG Minister for Bougainville Affairs Steven Pirika Kama, and the Governors of Enga, Gulf, National Capital District, and Western Province.
Mr Mano told guests: “The Resort was acquired for 32 million Fijian after an eighteen-month journey, in negotiations and diligence, but was driven by a team with a view to embracing a sector that has proven itself as the life blood of this country – tourism and hospitality.
“Although in our country investments in tourism and hospitality are low in light of mineral resources, MRDC believes tourism is the best long term strategy for diversifying its investment portfolio – both within PNG and around the Pacific.
“We are happy with this investment. Beside the 200 acres of land and golf championship course, we are the gateway to some of Fiji’s best fishing and diving areas, home of Fiji’s adventure capital and located on one of the best beaches on the coast. Where else can you find a resort property that offers so much?”
Changes expected at the resort, Mr Mano said, included:

New marina
“With the addition of our new marina developments, this property will offer everything one could imagine under the sun.
“Previous developers may not have been successful with this property because there may not have been any synergy between them and this land, but to us the Sago Palms on the golf course are sure signs of success.”

The Pearl, a 200-room resort
“The marina development and resort expansion will include ninety-six 2 & 3 bedroom apartments which can be divided into a total of 126 rooms and sold as part of the inventory of the existing resort, making this a 200-room resort.

A first for Fiji and South Pacific
“The marina apartments will be centred around an exclusive pontoon marina development that will allow about 36 private mooring berths plus luxury super yacht berths on the river frontage. This will be the first of its kind in Fiji and the South Pacific. Within the marina complex will be a bar and grill that will overlook the boats and marina boardwalk.”

Beach front restaurant
“Additional developments will be a dining restaurant on the beach front, new and larger spa facilities within a “Health and Wellness Village” centred around the inland pond and an exclusive gymnasium.

Conference facilities
“Conference facilities will be increased to accommodate 400 guests complete with food and beverages outlets.

Fishermen’s bar
A special fisherman’s bar called “Mai Bar” will be developed overlooking the river.
The Mai Bar and bistro will cater for locals and guests and will evolve into a night spot in the evenings and until the early hours of the morning.
It will save on rental cars and travel cost to Suva.
“The marina development will see the entire river frontage developed and shall rank among private marina developments around the world.”
“The resort together with the existing 18 hole Robert Trent Jones Championship Golf Course will be one of Fiji’s newest and most unique tourism products.

Namosi mine, ‘icing on the cake’
“Fiji is at the pinnacle of economic growth. With tourism breaching new boundaries and greater foreign investments in tourism setting a trend that will push Fiji beyond its past limitations.
With Papua New Guinea Liquid Natural Gas project coming on line and an appreciating Kina, our investment value will continue to grow.
“If the Namosi mine comes on stream in the future, it will be the icing on the cake,” Mr Mano said.

Sunday lunch
Meanwhile, during the private lunch between Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama, Mr O’Neill and selected businesspeople, Commodore Bainimarama had proposed rescheduling the Pacific, African Caribbean Pacific (PACP) meeting in Papua New Guinea from next month to December 3-4. Ratu Inoke said this was because of Commodore Bainimarama’s busy schedules.

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