When Brisbane won its bid to host the 2032 Summer Olympics a lot of people across Australia celebrated, including Brisbane City Council Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner who said; “Brisbane didn’t just score the Olympics. Brisbane just won gold. Gold for our economy. Gold for tourism. Gold for jobs and growth.” The 2032 Brisbane Olympics is likely to mean a hotel boom with new infrastructure planning already underway to meet expected demand. But more than that, it could also mark the beginning of a new golden era for tourism in the region, with Brisbane growing from a small city to a major destination in the process.
Brisbane hotel rooms in demand and new hotel developments underway
In order to ensure an adequate supply of rooms, the State Government Olympic Task Force commissioned a Gold Coast accommodation consultant to secure 41,000 rooms mid-way through last year.
In addition, new hotel development applications have already been lodged and approved, as hotel brands compete to meet the expected 2032 Olympic demand.
- Two hotel towers of 181 apartments will likely be developed by Libbit Holdings at the Olympic Stadium site.
- The Wagner Family have applied to build a 182 room hotel development in Mooloolaba.
- Manors Gate Group is expected to begin construction of a new 196-room slender tower in Broadbeach.
- Athletes Village in Hamilton Northshore, Southbank and Roma Street sites earmarked for investment will all include new hotel developments.
After several years of pandemic hardship, the hotel sector in Brisbane, Gold Coast and the Sunshine coast is already back in action and planning to meet the coming boom in hotel demand.
Post-Olympic hotel demand expected to meet supply
Even after the 2032 Olympics are over, demand for hotels in Brisbane and the surrounding areas is expected to continue. Research based on previous games shows that in many instances when the games finish new demand rises to meet the supply of new hotel rooms.
With the Sydney 2000 Olympics for example, hotels were built to supply a 4.1% increase of 39,125 new rooms. However, after the event in 2000 was over, demand for hotel rooms only declined by 0.9%.
A similar situation is expected for Brisbane, Gold Coast and surrounding areas, where a popular international tourism market already exists.
Reports predict benefits and growth in the tourism industry beyond 2032
Studies of the costs versus long-term industry benefits of the 2032 Brisbane Olympics so far show an exciting outlook for the hospitality and tourism industry.
One study found that the tourism industry will benefit economically in the period leading up to and beyond the Olympics, with a $20 billion uplift expected from 2021 to 2036.
One other report by CBRE shows that benefits of the Olympics will overflow into: a spike in office leasing, a significant tourism boost, outperformance in the residential market and an estimated $5.1 billion in sports related capital investment.
An independent economic assessment by KPMG has also indicated the Games will deliver a total benefit of $8.1 billion for Queensland, and $17.61 billion for Australia, in economic growth as a result of investment, development and tourism. Much of that investment will be focused around the Brisbane region, with a long term local economic boom expected to follow.
Olympic investment in Brisbane will make it more attractive to tourists in the long-term
Sporting facilities aren’t the only infrastructure developments that make up Olympic investment. The Olympics also open the way for a broad wave of state, local and federal spending on other infrastructure projects such as public transport, green spaces, bridges, riverside housing, and broad use of entertainment precincts and venues.
Brisbane will receive investment funding through the Olympic Infrastructure Agency for a range of exciting new permanent infrastructure:
- The Brisbane Arena will temporarily host swimming events for the Olympics, and then be used as an 18,000 seat entertainment venue linked to new public transport connections.
- The Athletes Village will revitalise the Hamilton Wharves district, and athlete accommodation will be repurposed as a mix of hotel accommodation, public and private housing after the games.
- The International Broadcasting Centre will be used for games broadcasting, and then afterwards be converted into parklands.
Brisbane City Council will also be investing in green and pedestrian friendly infrastructure over the next decade in preparation for hosting the Olympics, such as:
- Five new ‘Green Bridges’ for pedestrians, bicycles, public transport and scooters to cross the river.
- Cycle paths, pedestrian walkways and new public transport infrastructure to improve mobility for Olympics visitors.
The raft of development projects earmarked for Brisbane in the next ten years leading up to the games will make the city region overall more livable, greener, easier to navigate and more attractive as a tourist destination in the long term.
More hospitality career opportunities for skilled professionals
According to government estimates the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games are expected to support 91,600 full-time equivalent jobs in Queensland and 122,900 nationally. Many of those jobs will be in the tourism and hospitality sector, with many new hotel developments scheduled to be completed over the next few years. Hotels and hospitality businesses will need to train their workforce, and hire hospitality graduates to meet demand.
In fact, one Queensland Government report shows that demand for new accommodation and food services employees is already growing and is expected to increase by 38.5% by 2024.
For anyone interested in a career in the hospitality industry, now is a great time to upskill. With a Bachelor of Business (International Hotel and Resort Management) or equivalent course in hotel or hospitality management, a graduate who takes advantage of the Olympic boom opportunity could expect to climb to a senior hotel management position within just a few years of graduating.
See here for more information about the courses in hotel management on offer at the Blue Mountains International Hotel School (BMIHMS), part of Torrens University Australia.