James Packer, the executive director Crown Resorts, announced this week that his Australia gambling group plans to build a 90-storey, 6-star hotel and apartment complex in Melbourne's Southbank complex. The $1.5 billion hotel will be build adjacent to the Melbourne casino complex and will be the fourth Crown hotel in Southbank.
The hotel will be designed by the British architectural firm Wilkinson Eyre, who planned the group's hotel and casino in Sydney.
As such, it is predicted that Crown Resorts will spend over $10 billion on construction projects around the world, including Perth, Sydney and Las Vegas, over the next decade.
"Melbourne just keeps getting better as a city, but we can't take this success for granted," said James Packer. "A new hotel is the next evolution of Crown Melbourne. I am committed to this city and committed to keeping Crown Melbourne at the forefront of Australian tourism."
Sky Bridge to Link Casino
One of the plans for the new hotel is to link it to the main casino floor in Melbourne via a glass sky bridge which will be located over Queens Bridge Street.
The hotel will feature over 380 rooms, as well as a publicly accessible restaurant and garden terrace at the top of the 300 meter glass tower.
Packer said that the architects had "designed a beautiful and elegant building that is destined to be an important addition to the Melbourne skyline."
The chief executive of Crown, Rowen Craigie said that over 3,000 new jobs will be created during the construction period of the hotel, while 1,000 permanent positions will be offered after the completion of the project.
According to Craigie, "the development will also assist Melbourne in attracting more high net worth tourists, reinforcing the city's appeal as a destination for important international conferences, sporting and cultural events."
Casino Hotel Pending Permission
While Crown has big plans for the casino complex, the group still needs to obtain approval from authorities.
One of the first obstacles could be the fact that buildings generally should not be built above 250 m due to flight path restrictions.
"So obviously something above 300m and taller than the Eureka tower would be an interesting one for the Turnbull government and the aviation regulators, as well as the other issues associated with the size of the proposal that the state government and council will need to consider," noted Stephen Mayne, a city councillor for Melbourne.