Brisbane’s newest hotel is open for business, and the Four Points by Sheraton is already booked out for next week.
The 4½ star hotel at 99 Mary Street is the first internationally branded hotel to be built from the ground up in Brisbane for 16 years.
The 32-storey hotel has 246 rooms and is expected to largely cater for the corporate market.
There is also a bar and restaurant on the 30th floor nearing completion, which boasts impressive views of the CBD and Brisbane River.
Fifty per cent of the hotel was occupied on Monday’s opening night, and all rooms have already been snapped up next week.
The Sheraton-branded hotel will be managed by Starwood Hotels and Resorts and was designed by Brisbane architect Noel Robinson.
However, it was built by Brisbane’s Felicity Hotels, a company backed by Malaysian-born mining magnate Sam Chong and his son Paul.
The Chong family are also behind a proposal to knock down three historic buildings in Brisbane’s CBD - the Bonded Stores - and replace them with a 60-storey hotel.
At the Four Points by Sheraton opening on Tuesday morning, Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said a lack of hotel rooms caused the city to miss out on about 87,000 visitors and $130 million in annual visitor expenditure.
“When I was here a couple of years ago with Sam and Paul Chong as we turned that first sod it was great to know that somebody had confidence in Brisbane to go ahead, to make the call, and to develop this hotel site,” Cr Quirk said.
“It comes at a perfect time with the G20 upon us later this year.”
While Cr Quirk, Tourism Minister Jann Stuckey and Starwood staff were talking up the Four Points by Sheraton and its seemingly infinite possibilities, a relaxed Paul Chong said he was “sort-of confident” the hotel would be a success.
The Mary Street site is the first hotel Felicity Hotels has built and Mr Chong described it as a “very big leap of faith”.
“It’s really up to the consumers. We hope they like it. That’s the thing, it’s done for the consumers so they have a good stay,” he said.
Ms Stuckey congratulated the Chong family and predicted the hotel would be “a big boost for the local precinct”.
“The Newman Government is working hard to maximise visitor numbers to the state and achieve our goal of doubling annual overnight visitor expenditure from $15 billion in 2010 to $30 billion by 2020,” she said.