Spit Master Plan prompts Sea World’s $50m cash splash

THE GOLD COAST will continue to be Australia’s number one tourism destination, following three exciting announcements on Saturday.

In a major boost to the city’s theme park credentials, Village Roadshow has confirmed it will spend $50 million on creating a 1.5-hectare precinct to be known as The New Atlantis.

The ‘game-changing’ addition to the Main Beach theme park will include a one-kilometre wooden roller coaster, Leviathan, which, in a world-first, will have rear-facing seats.


“People have been asking for one of these (wooden coasters) in Australia for a long time,” Village Roadshow Theme Parks (VRTP) CEO Clark Kirby told myGC.

“The technology involved in these is actually more advanced than that of the steel coasters and this one will become such a favourite for the entire country,” Mr Kirby said.


The roller coaster is expected to be ready to roll in December 2020.

Prior to that, an 18-metre giant pendulum swing, called the Vortex (see video below), is due to be operational by Christmas this year.


The third part of The New Atlantis is Trident, a spinning attraction that soars 52-metres high into the air above the Main Beach theme park.

“The precinct will also feature an amphitheatre where our team can conduct shows, presentations and activities to educate guests on how they can help protect and conserve the ocean environment, linking back to our Sea World Research & Rescue Foundation,” Mr Kirby added.

The theme park’s announcement coincided with the Queensland Government’s commitment to invest $60 million into The Spit Master Plan, which is being billed as an Ocean Park two-thirds the size of New York’s Central Park.

“It is encouraging to see the Government’s investment in the Spit Masterplan and we look forward to our new attractions playing a role in this project which we know will bring visitors to the Gold Coast,” Mr Kirby said.

The exciting news comes as Destination Gold Coast (DGC) launches a $2.6m marketing initiative to lure families to the Gold Coast this winter.

The campaign is an extension of its previous ‘Come & Play’ tourism push, positioning the Gold Coast as Australia’s favourite holiday destination.

“We had a bumper Easter and school holidays and we are keen to draw more domestic tourists – our bread and butter – to experience ‘Australia’s playground’ at a time that is traditionally a softer period for tourism,” DGC CEO Annaliese Battista said.

The revised campaign debuted this week in key visitor markets of Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, highlighting the city’s famed beaches and theme parks, nature-based experiences, tropical rainforest and casual family-friendly dining.