Kelly Slater’s ‘surf ranch’ to boost Sunshine Coast’s sporting prowess

The World Surf League is planning to base its first Kelly Slater Surf Ranch in Australia on the Sunshine Coast.

The estimated $100 million Kelly Slater Surf Ranch will deliver a sporting and tourism facility that could establish the Sunshine Coast as Australia’s most dynamic surfing base and bring with it further sporting tourism opportunities, according to Visit Sunshine Coast  CEO Simon Latchford.

World Surf League general manager Andrew Stark said the surf ranch would anchor a broader tourism development precinct that would include the development of an eco-lodge, event and training facilities, tourism accommodation, public open space and an environmental experience centre.

The announcement comes in the same week that the Sunshine Coast was confirmed as the venue for the 2021 ‘Aussies’ – Surf Life Saving’s premier surf sports event which is set to attract over 20,000 competitors and spectators.

“The Sunshine Coast is already well-established as one of Australia’s most popular destinations for water-based events and holidays, but with the Kelly Slater name attached to the surf ranch, it could give our region even greater appeal internationally,” said Latchford.

“We have been highly successful in attracting domestic and international sporting teams to train on the Sunshine Coast, we are now a venue for the national football codes and, of course, we have hosted a wide range of international and national surfing, triathlon and ironman competitions in the past.

“Having a global name associated with such a high-tech surfing project could really elevate sports tourism to new levels on the Sunshine Coast, attracting international teams, training camps and surfing fans.”