A PROPOSAL to build a $35 million marina development with a ferry service and luxury resort on Kangaroo Island has been welcomed by the South Australian Government.
Tourism Minister Leon Bignell said the proposal, which has been granted major development status, includes a 200-bed, four-star hotel on 80 acres of land in American River.
As part of the plan, the new ferry terminal would be located at American River Wharf and the nearby marina would have retails shops and restaurants.
"The resort would include 160 hotel rooms together with 40 individual villas, two restaurants, bars, a spa, fitness centre, kid's club, conference centre, an outdoor activity centre, staff accommodation and substantial landscaped grounds," Mr Bignell said.
"Importantly, more than 100 jobs would be created during construction and there will be significant opportunities for the local community through direct ongoing employment and the supply of local fresh produce, food and wine."
The group behind the plan is City and Central Consulting, the Australian affiliate of CCD Hotel and Resorts Ltd and this is its first major venture in South Australia.
"The State Government is aggressively chasing major growth in the visitor economy and developments such as this are absolutely critical to increasing employment in our regions," the Minister said.
"We already have a high number of Chinese visitors to Kangaroo Island. This proposal, along with other major developments and events across the State, will help us reach our goal of 57,000 Chinese visitors by 2020 and generate a further 10,000 tourism related jobs.
"CCD has advised the State Government it wants to promote local service providers, suppliers and tourism businesses, while respecting the pristine environment of Kangaroo Island and incorporating a number of green initiatives.
"The project is an excellent boost for the Island."
The proposal still needs to go through a comprehensive consultation process with the local community. Subject to approval, construction would begin early in 2016 with completion in March 2017.