Australia’s first underwater hotel has opened on the Great Barrier Reef with guests able to immerse themselves in the aquarium-like luxury accommodation.
Reefsuites have been constructed on the revamped pontoon at Hardy Reef, with the rooms featuring partially glass-bottomed rooms with floor-to-ceiling glass windows.
Cheaper “glamping” options are also available in day beds on the top deck.
The Reedsuites are part of the pontoon’s $10 million rebuild after damage caused by Cylone Debbie two years ago.
The Queensland Government part funded the revamp with a $2.75 million investment aimed at attracting more visitors to the Whitsundays.
“It’s a balance of allowing people to immerse themselves in this World Heritage-listed natural wonder without doing any damage,” said Luke Walker, chief operating officer at travel company Journey Beyond.
“In everything we do the sustainability of the reef is part of the conversation, it’s a live topic on the table with any decision we make.”
Sustainability efforts include the proper disposal of wastewater, the elimination of single use plastics and a visitor levy which goes towards the care of the reef.
A marine biologist and a master reef guide also form part of the staff, helping to educate guests about the reef.