US-backed syndicate closes Port Hinchinbrook deal

US-backed syndicate closes Port Hinchinbrook deal
US-backed syndicate closes Port Hinchinbrook deal

A US-linked syndicate has closed the deal for Port Hinchinbrook in Queensland, which it plans to redevelop into a top marina destination for $450 million. 

The resort, located adjacent to Hinchinbrook Island and near Cardwell, was first developed by Keith Williams in the 1990s but was damaged in the aftermath of Cyclone Yasi in 2011. It fell into the hands of liquidators after the collapse of Williams Corporation in 2013.

The Passage Holdings, an Australian company linked to American businessmen Lewis Cohen, Stephan Pinto and Joe Korman, settled the deal for the resort on September 27 with liquidator FTI Consulting.

Company spokesman Bruce Goddard, director of Place Projects, said the path was now clear for The Passage Holdings to unveil its 10-year masterplan to transform the resort, which will be renamed Hinchinbrook Harbour and Resort.

Goddard said a number of issues had delayed the settlement, but the deal went through in the end. 

“It’s very exciting to be moving ahead with a development that will become one of Australia’s finest safe-haven marina destinations,” he said.

“The developers will begin dredging works on the canal and marina as soon as practical so locals and visitors can once again enjoy the great fishing and waterways of the Hinchinbrook Channel.”

Goddard said the settlement also paved the way for the appointment of an  independent third party body corporate to resolve the disputes between residents and the former owners and late developer Keith Williams.

“The proposed structure will bring to an end years of unrest and poor communication,” he said.

“Our natural assets and the strong north Queensland market set a positive tone for the future.”

Goddard said the masterplan for the development would be released soon and that the sales and marketing for Hinchinbrook Harbour and Resort already was in its early stages.

“We are close to opening an onsite sales office now,” he said.

Architecture firm DBI Design has been working on the resort’s masterplan for the past year.

Under it, the resort will boast a $45 million international fishing village, new marina, family resort, a water theme park, camp grounds, backpacker accommodation, and waterfront residential lots and apartments.

Since taking possession of the property last year, The Passage Holdings has spent more than $4 million on restoring and upgrading the resort and preparing the masterplan. 

The revival is expected to cost around $450 million but economic modelling forecasts more than $1 billion will be pumped into the Cassowary Coast region with its reignited tourism.

Commercial Sale Port Hinchinbrook

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