Tourism and Hospitality

Portfolio focus: Asset accumulation, capability transfer and positive cultural outcomes.

Our Tourism and Hospitality portfolio


The range of assets in IBA’s Tourism and Hospitality portfolio reflects the desire by many of our Indigenous partners to participate in economic opportunities linked to their traditional lands, as well as the strong commercial opportunities that are available in this sector.

In 2014-15 IBA reviewed its involvement in the tourism and hospitality sector and embarked on a significant change program aimed at creating a strong, more efficient portfolio. Central to this new approach is the establishment of a subsidiary company to provide management, financial and other services with the aim of creating economic of scale, synergies and access to dedicated specialist resources for the benefit of our portfolio businesses.

A key part of this strategy is the creation of an Indigenous tourism brand based on the unique experiences available to travellers visiting the iconic locations that make up IBA and its partners’ tourism portfolio. Through its investment in the tourism sector, IBA wants to change the way travellers think about and experience Indigenous Australian people and their cultures.

Current Assets

Northern Territory Location
Gagudju Crocodile Holiday Inn, Jabiru, Northern Territory Kakadu Crocodile Hotel, Flinders Street, Jabiru, NT Boasting the only 4 star accommodation within Kakadu National Park, the Kakadu Crocodile Hotel at Jabiru is a joint venture between the Gagudju Association and IBA. The Gagadju Association represents 10 local clan groups and actively participates in the governance of the asset ensuring that business decisions are made with a focus on Indigenous outcomes. Purchased in 1999, this asset has performed consistently, returning regular income to investors over that period.
Gagadju Lodge Cooinda, Jim Jim, Northern Territory Cooinda Lodge, Cooinda, Jim Jim, NT IBA acquired equity in the Cooinda Lodge in 1999. The Lodge, located in Kakadu National Park alongside the Yellow Water billabong, approximately 3 hour’s drive from Darwin, has a variety of accommodation and revenue streams. As well as the 48 Lodge Rooms and over 400 Camp Sites, the asset generates income from tours and a retail outlet and petrol station. With peak employment numbers approximately 100, the lodge consistently employs up to 20 local people. Along with employment, contributes significantly to improving the economic impacts for Indigenous people though the following activities:

  • The Indigenous partner, the Gagudju Association holds a 48% stake in the Investment.
  • There is active Indigenous board participation.
  • The Investment supports the southern region of Kakadu with a general store, public bistro and petrol facilities.
The Darwin Waterfront medina Vibe Hotel. Adina Apartment Hotel and Vibe Hotel Darwin Waterfront, Kitchener Drive, Darwin, NT

Purchased in 2009 in partnership with Larrakia Development Corporation and the Toga Group, IBA subsequently bought LDC to enable them to pursue other investment opportunities. Following a concerted effort to improve the Indigenous employment outcomes from this investment, the Vibe Hotel Darwin Waterfront and Adina Apartment Hotels Darwin now have in place a number of strategies to attract and retain Indigenous staff including cultural competency training for all staff, establishing employment targets and fast tracking Indigenous employees through internal training programs so that they can take up duty and general management positions sooner.

In 2014 IBA transferred part ownership to Wunan Foundation, an East Kimberley Indigenous organisation based in Kununurra, WA.

Queensland Location
Minjerribah Camping Pty Ltd, North Stradbroke Island, QLD  In October 2012, IBA and the Quandamooka People of North Stradbroke Island formed the Minjerribah joint venture to operate the Straddie Holiday Park business under the trading name Straddie Camping. Catering to more than 85,000 visitors a year, the camping business is one of the largest and most prominent enterprises on the island. In addition to generating an ongoing income stream and employment opportunities for the Quandamook People, the joint venture is expected to create opportunities for the establishment of small complimentary businesses to support Park operations. Over the next five years Straddie Camping will be upgrading the existing facilities and investing in new infrastructure within the camping grounds. The Quandamooka people have two members on the board of the joint venture, creating opportunities for knowledge and capability transfer in terms of business strategy and management.
Holiday Inn Townsville, 334 Flinders Street, Townsville, QLD In December 2007 the IBA Board approved the acquisition of the Holiday Inn Townsville with the final purchase occuring in June 2008. The hotel comprises 200 rooms of four and a half star rating spanning over 20 levels. Facilities include a restaurant and bar, one conference room, five meeting rooms, rooftop swimming pool, two retail spaces and administration facilities. In 2008 and 2009 the hotel underwent a major refurbishment. In 2011, as a result of damage from Cyclone Yasi, extensive remediation works were necessary. The hotel is managed by Intercontinental Hotels Group, who work with IBA to increase Indigenous employment and training opportunities. IBA is continuing to seek potential Indigenous co-investors for this asset.
Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park, Caravonica, Queensland Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park, Western Arterial Road, Caravonica, QLD Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park is the largest employer of Indigenous Australians in North Queensland and has showcased the culture of the Djabugay rainforest people to more than three million visitors during the past 25 years. The venture has injected more than $35 million into the local Indigenous community via wages, royalties and the purchase and commissioning of art and artefacts. A $13 million redevelopment was undertaken in 2015 to redevelop and reposition the venture to showcase the diversity of Indigenous people in Australia and allow more direct interaction for visitors.
South Australia Location
Aerial view of the Wilpena Pound, Flinders Ranges, South Australia. Image courtesy of Anthology. Wilpena Pound Resort, Flinders Ranges, SA. A joint venture between the traditional owners, Adnyamathanha Traditional Lands Association Inc and IBA, bought the Wilpena Pound Resort in early 2012. The Resort is a 60 room 4 star resort located in the Flinders Ranges National Park in South Australia, 5 hours drive from Adelaide. To broaden its market appeal, the resort developed the Ikara Safari Camp, consisting of a central facility and 15 upscale safari tends. The camp opened in June 2014. In addition, the Resort also provides accommodation through its 350+ site campground, of which 46 sites are powered. Other sources of revenue within the Resort include aircraft tours, four wheel drive tours, retail, food & beverage and a visitors centre. IBA and the traditional owners are working closely with management to provide training and employment opportunities for local Indigenous people.
Western Australia Location
Fitzroy River Lodge Fitzroy River Lodge Great Northern Highway, Fitzroy Crossing, WA Established in 1989, IBA and Leedal Pty Ltd, a local Indigenous organisation purchased the Lodge in partnership with industry experts. Situated on the banks of the Fitzroy River, Fitzroy River Lodge is located in the heart of the Kimberley region in Western Australia. It offers a wide range of accommodation to suit all travellers, from luxury hotel units to basic camping. Leedal uses the income from its investment in the Lodge to subsidise a number of social programs for its community members such as; a children’s education program, supply computers for the school and provide opportunities for local Indigenous Fitzroy Valley residents to participate in community events. Following a change of management there is renewed focus on improving the employment and training opportunities for local Indigenous people at this investment.


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