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Sleeping with the fish: Australia opens its first underwater hotel in the Great Barrier Reef

Sleeping with the fish: Australia opens its first underwater hotel in the Great Barrier Reef

  • Australia's first underwater hotel in Queensland took 14 months to complete and costs a whopping $ 10 million
  • The Government of Queensland has partially funded the show aquarium hotel for an amount of $ 2.75 million
  • Steps have been taken to minimize damage to reef-related threats caused by climate change and coastal development
  • From December 1, guests can observe the reef and nature when the two rooms are open to the public

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Visitors to the Great Barrier Reef can literally immerse themselves in the natural wonder & night after the opening of the first underwater accommodation in Australia.

Newly released photos of Reef Suites on the reconstructed pontoon at Hardy Reef – which was badly damaged in Cyclone Debbie 2017 – show aquarium-like rooms with partially glass floors with glass windows from floor to ceiling.

Guests can observe the reef and all its animals in the dark when the two rooms are open to the public from December 1.

Visitors to the Great Barrier Reef can spend the night in Australia's first underwater accommodation (photo)

Visitors to the Great Barrier Reef can spend the night in Australia's first underwater accommodation (photo)

In the underwater hotel, guests wake up to the underwater life (photo) and it is open to visitors on 1 December

In the underwater hotel, guests wake up to the underwater life (photo) and it is open to visitors on 1 December

In the underwater hotel, guests wake up to the underwater life (photo) and it is open to visitors on 1 December

Others who like to sleep under the stars and opt for the slightly cheaper option can & # 39; glamping & # 39; go in day beds on the upper deck.

The company behind the renewed reconstruction of the $ 10 million pontoon said it had environmental issues at the top of the priority list.

Measures have been taken to minimize damage to a reef that is already threatened by climate change and coastal development.

& # 39; It is a balance between enabling people to immerse themselves in this natural wonder listed on the World Heritage List without causing damage, & # 39; Luke Walker, chief operating officer at experiential travel company Journey Beyond, told AAP.

& # 39; In everything we do, the sustainability of the reef is part of the conversation, it is a live topic on the table with every decision we make. & # 39;

The correct disposal of waste water known as gray water in accordance with the law, the use of crockery instead of disposable plastic.

The floating pontoon (photo), 39 nautical miles from Airlie Beach, is about 1000 square meters in size and weighs 260 tons

The floating pontoon (photo), 39 nautical miles from Airlie Beach, is about 1000 square meters in size and weighs 260 tons

The floating pontoon (photo), 39 nautical miles from Airlie Beach, is about 1000 square meters in size and weighs 260 tons

The 14-month project itself was partially funded - for an amount of $ 2.75 million - by the government of Queensland (underwater room at the hotel)

The 14-month project itself was partially funded - for an amount of $ 2.75 million - by the government of Queensland (underwater room at the hotel)

The 14-month project itself was partially funded – for an amount of $ 2.75 million – by the government of Queensland (underwater room at the hotel)

The floating pontoon, 39 nautical miles from Airlie Beach, is around 1000 square meters in size and weighs 260 tons.

Nearly 4000 pieces of coral were permanently removed and replanted on the existing reef wall when the original pontoon mooring structure was removed.

The company described it as the largest natural coral transplant ever achieved there.

Walker said the purpose of the new pontoon is to increase & # 39; increase the attraction to reef improvement & # 39; and the long-standing tourist hotspot to & # 39; another level & # 39; to bring with something that Australia has never seen before.

He said that a marine biologist and a master reef guide are part of the staff who help to inform guests about the reef, its history and its future, and that Cruise Whitsundays had worked closely with the Marine Park Authority during the rebuilding.

The 14-month project itself – for an amount of $ 2.75 million – was co-funded by the Queensland government.

The attraction is expected to attract thousands of visitors to the Whitsundays each year, bringing millions of more cash to local businesses.

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