Island-wide celebrations commence on K’gari (Fraser Island)
2022 marks thirty years since the sustainably developed Kingfisher Bay Resort officially opened its doors on K’gari (Fraser Island); a milestone year that is shared by the 30th anniversary of the island’s UNESCO World Heritage listing in 1992.
To commemorate this momentous occasion, and in keeping with a long-lasting connection to K’gari, leading tourism operators Kingfisher Bay Resort, Eurong Beach Resort and Fraser Explorer Tours have unveiled a full rebranding across their businesses.
The island’s flagship ecotourism accommodation, Kingfisher Bay Resort has retained its founding name, however, features a new island-inspired logo. The accent fern and signature forest green colour are reflective of the verdant, surrounding environment and indicative of the island’s immersive, nature-based travel experiences.
Eurong Beach Resort, the 4WD-only accommodation situated within the township of Eurong along the east coast’s famed 75 Mile Beach, will now trade as ‘K’gari Beach Resort’. This is mirrored by Fraser Explorer Tours, the island’s largest and most comprehensive guided touring business, which will now operate as ‘K’gari Explorer Tours’.
The move follows the World Heritage Area within the Great Sandy National Park, along with the surrounding waters being renamed in September last year, to ‘K’gari’ – the original Butchulla people’s name for the island, which translates to ‘paradise’.
Butchulla Aboriginal Corporation Director Christine Royan said her people were in support of tourism operators such as K’gari Beach Resort and K’gari Explorer Tours incorporating the island’s traditional name. “If you’re doing business on K’gari, then respectfully call her by her traditional name, K’gari, which is paradise”. Ms Royan went on to state how those doing business on the island should also abide by the three Butchulla Lores; ‘What is good for the land comes first’, ‘Do not touch anything that does not belong to you’, ‘If you have plenty, you must share’.
Kingfisher Bay Resort General Manager David Hay said there was no better time to unite their brands. “K’gari is the reason we’re all here – collectively, we connect visitors with this incredible destination, and we felt this year, in line with the World Heritage anniversary, it was the perfect opportunity to embrace this wonderful name change on the island directly across our businesses”. Kingfisher Bay Resort has a long-standing relationship with the BAC and are currently working together on a new cultural initiative, set to further enhance the Australian Indigenous experiences for visitors to the destination.
This follows the 2021 opening of the K’gari World Heritage Discovery Centre – a joint initiative by Kingfisher Bay Resort, the BAC, University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) and the Fraser Coast Council, to heighten awareness of the destination’s environmental significance, and in turn, encourage conservation.
Stretching 123 kilometres, K’gari is the largest sand island in the world, recognised for its outstanding universal natural values when it achieved UNESCO status, becoming Queensland’s fourth listed World Heritage environmental area at the time.
Regarded as a world class destination, Kingfisher Bay Resort welcomes upwards of 158,00 guests per year alone; having long been the favoured accommodation choice for travellers on K’gari, particularly within the southeast Queensland drive-market.
General Manager David Hay said repeat visitation has become an increasingly prominent trend, especially for multi-generational holiday makers.
“We’ve been established for thirty years, and so Kingfisher Bay Resort holds special memories for a lot of travellers. There’s a sense of nostalgia; people who holidayed here as a child are now bringing their own families to K’gari”.
“It’s a remarkable milestone to reach, but it’s all thanks to our loyal guests and everyone with a shared passion for K’gari, that we’re able to honour this achievement”, said Mr Hay.
Termed as ‘The Year of 30’, a series of celebratory surprise sales and activations will be launched throughout the year across the brands’ resort and touring experiences – the first, starting today, April 4th, with 30% OFF hotel rooms at both Kingfisher Bay Resort and K’gari Beach Resort.
“For us, it’s not solely about celebrating how far we’ve come over these past three decades, it’s what actions we’re taking moving forward”. “We’ve placed a strong focus on renewable energy with our solar powered projects, we’ve purchased our own recycling truck – we’re championing as much as we can to encourage visitation, whilst ensuring we’re treading as lightly as possible. The preservation of K’gari is paramount”, said Mr Hay.