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Mice Net : June 2009
hunter valley as good as it gets If the hunter Valley was a movie it would definitely be up for an academy award. he Hunter Valley region, a few hours north of Sydney, just keeps getting better with age, not only offering some exceptional conference facilities, but a wealth of great activities and experiences “beyond the ballroom”. Venues including Cypress Lakes Resort, the Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley, the Grand Mercure Hunter Valley Gardens, The Sebel Kirkton Park, and Peppers Guest House, have helped to lay the foundations for the destination as a whole. Along with fantastic restaurants and wineries like Bimbadgen, the Hunter Valley has become a spectacular destination for meetings, events and small incentives. And soon there will be another great option for meeting planners with construction beginning on a new $40 million five-star luxury destination spa and hotel to be built adjacent to The Vintage Golf Club at Rothbury in the Hunter Valley. The Chateau Elan Hunter Valley is a joint venture between leading NSW development firm, The Stevens Group, and American entrepreneurs Don and Nancy Panoz. The Panoz’s are the founders and owners of the US based Chateau Elan Hotels and Resorts. John Stevens, director of the Stevens Group, says this project is a bold investment in tough economic times, but underlines the strength of the local industry and their confidence that this is the right product for today’s discerning luxury travel market. Mr Stevens said the destination spa resort will deliver a major boost to luxury tourism in the Hunter. It will feature 18 state-ofthe-art treatment rooms, 20 spa accommodation suites discreetly connected to the spa treatment areas, as well as a separate complex of 40 self-contained dual key, two-bedroom spa villas each T 100 mice.net with its own kitchen, fireplace, spa and stunning views of the Greg Norman-designed golf course. “This prestigious resort will marry the unparalleled luxury and hospitality of America’s Chateau Elan brand with the beauty of the Hunter Valley, one of the state’s most treasured destinations,” Mr Stevens said. In a boost for the local economy, construction is being undertaken by Kingston Building Australia and is expected to create between 90 and150 jobs during construction. Mr Stevens expects the spa to be open by the end of the year. He said there will be a further and much-needed local employment boost of between 80 and 100 new permanent or part time positions being offered across the spa resort and The Vintage Golf Club in 2010. Mr Panoz said he has absolute confidence in the long-term success of the project, despite the current financial climate. He sees the resort bringing a new type of tourist to the region. “The Spa will serve discerning consumers who place a premium on their wellbeing and value privacy and quality,” Mr Panoz said. “The Chateau Elan Hunter Valley will rival any of the world’s first class resorts. Spa treatments will combine traditional therapies with western health philosophies in a setting of complete luxury. Future stages in the development will include the addition of outdoor entertainment and concert facilities, conference facilities and further hotel accommodation. For more information or bookings call (03) 9862 6650. ABOVE: The Vintage Golf Course.