Airlie Beach is reviving itself as the gateway to the world-renowned Whitsundays and Great Barrier Reef post Cyclone Debbie, with the town once again buzzing and new developments, including One Airlie back on track with construction.
With the spotlight firmly on the iconic region and major tourism infrastructure investment now fast-tracked, Airlie Beach is set to boom as Australia’s next ‘must have’ property destination.
According to local PRD Whitsunday Principal, Christie Leet, Airlie Beach was on the verge of significant growth and development and with property prices at 2002 levels, the Whitsunday’s will once again shine as Australia’s coastal real estate hot spot.
“Airlie Beach and, in particular, the property market has experienced a significant rebound in recent months. While Cyclone Debbie put things on hold for a few weeks, the interest in the region has really impacted the supply of property, we are now seeing supply levels in most areas of the market at around the six-month mark,” Mr Leet said.
“This is a significant change from the height of three to five years’ supply which we were seeing post GFC. On the back of this, we expect to see a spike in prices during the course of the next 6 to 12 months as buyers actively compete for the short supply of stock.
“Development across the town has kicked off swiftly in recent weeks and there is a real sense of positivity once again. One Airlie, while located in a prime waterfront position, did not suffer any water damage and this has allowed civil construction to commence immediately as planned.”
Home to Australia’s fastest growing regional airport, Airlie Beach and The Whitsundays has seen a record 30% increase in visitation over the past year and is on track to exceed 1 million visitors to the Great Barrier Reef marine park in the Whitsundays.
Mr Leet said it was a real positive step for Airlie Beach and the greater Whitsundays to be selected as the only Queensland region selected to be part of the national Regional Tourism Infrastructure Investment Attraction Strategy.
“The recent announcement by Tourism Minister, Kate Jones, was a huge boost for the area. It has really cemented the future potential for the area in terms of economic growth and development, we firmly believe the flow on effect to the property market will be substantial,” Mr Leet said.
“We are already benefiting greatly from planned tourism investment, such as the Laguna Whitsundays Resort and redevelopment of Linderman Island Resort, Daydream Island Resort and South Molle Island Resort. Property investors are keen to secure their slice of our market now in anticipation of what will be happening in the near future.”
One of the attractions of Airlie Beach and the surrounding region was its finite supply of real estate, especially waterfront properties, according to Mr Leet.
“We have one of the best square kilometres of real estate on the planet – on one side we are bound by lush national park, while on the other we have the spectacular Great Barrier Reef marine park, but it is limited, particularly property on the water’s edge,” Mr Leet said.
There are only 15 remaining waterfront allotments available and nine of them are at One Airlie – once these are gone, that’s it.
“The exclusivity of property in this area, and the fact it’s very easy to access directly, is a real selling point for southern city dwellers who are keen for their own oasis away from the hustle and bustle of our major cities.”
While average prices for homes in Airlie Beach are approximately $795,000, it is also home to two of Australia’s premier properties – Mandalay House and Heaven’s Gate.
Significant tourism investment and major projects are now underway and planned around Airlie Beach, including:
- $2 billion re-development of the Laguna Whitsundays Resort
- $600 million re-development of Lindeman Island Resort
- Development of Daydream Island Resort and Spa and South Molle Island Resort
- Redevelopment of Brampton Island
- Adani’s $22 billion Carmichael mine will be built in the Galilee Basin, south-west of Airlie Beach