NRMA Parks and Resorts today (Aug 15) expanded its national portfolio with the $8 million purchase of the rights to run the Sundowner Breakwall Tourist Park at Port Macquarie on the New South Wales Mid North Coast.
The 8.29 hectare waterfront site on the Hastings River is the 36th holiday park to fall under NRMA Parks and Resorts’s management and leasing umbrella.
NRMA Parks and Resorts general manager Lyndall Murray said the company would spend $4 million transforming the Port Macquarie site into a dynamic, modern tourist destination capable of matching a growing market and changing consumer expectations.
“Consumer demand for camping and caravan experiences is at its highest level in two decades,” Ms Murray said.
“But this is a new generation of travelers and their expectations are different.
“Today’s camping and caravan tourists are looking for convenience and comfort with plenty of family-friendly activities and facilities.
“We need to continually innovate and renovate to meet that demand.”
Ms Murray said plans for the Port Macquarie upgrade included 36 new cabins, 11 studios, a kiosk and a water park.
“Australians have fallen back in love with the caravan and camping holiday in a big way and a key factor has been the growth in the number of thirty-something mums and dads wanting to recreate the magic of their childhood camping trips with their own kids,” she said.
“They want to switch off their smartphones, connect with their kids and get active in Australia’s great outdoors – and they want value for money too.”
Fresh industry data revealed the camping and caravan sector contributed more than $19 billion to the national economy and provided 50,000 jobs through the tourism and caravan manufacturing industries .
The Caravan Industry Association report also found Australians took more than 11 million overnight camping and caravan trips in 2015 – smashing the record set only a year earlier by 7 seven per cent.
The number of recreational vehicles manufactured in 2015 was 6.6 per cent higher than 2014 and the number of registrations rose 5.4 per cent over the same period.
“The increased demand for caravan and camping experiences provides immense opportunities,’’ Ms Murray said.
NRMA Parks and Resorts had plans to further expand its portfolio in 2016 and was currently negotiating management rights on another property in South Australia.