Pacific Fair, Gold Coast
AMP hosted a spectacular party to launch their Pacific Fair redevelopment on the Gold Coast on August 31. ‘Spectacular’ is the right word and it could be no less to compliment what is truly a spectacular centre.
Pacific Fair has languished somewhat during the past few years as a result of the GFC and the break up of assets with Westfield which both put a hold on redevelopment. It was ripe for redevelopment some six or so years back but the delay brought out some serendipitous results.
From around 2005, Gold Coast retail as a whole began a downward spiral. At its centre, Cavill Avenue used to be fun; it was quirky, full of little cafes, fashion shops, souvenir outlets and the arcades were busy. In the backstreets there was more of the same yet some of the fashion shops were very smart and the cafes and restaurants had moved several notches upwards. Elkhorn Avenue had claimed the title of the ‘high-end fashion street’ with Gucci and Louis Vuitton leading the charge. But then it all started to go wrong. Rents got exorbitant on Cavill Avenue as they did in the surrounds and many of the professionals moved out.
Fast food started to take over, owner operators who worked long hours were the only ones able to afford rents and kebab shops, hamburger joints and juice bars appeared on Elkhorn Avenue; the whole retail scene went pear shaped; there was no order, no precinct establishment, no total management direction. Had Pacific Fair been redeveloped around that time (2005 to 2010) and even been done extremely well, it would have been, quite simply ‘more of the same’.
But as the first decade in the new millennium ended, with the new international high street retailers emerging and the desperate need for an upmarket, high-end precinct, new opportunities were presented; AMP seized them!
What’s emerged at Pacific Fair is nothing short of superb; and it’s spectacular as well.
‘The Resort’ is a new precinct that crowns the redevelopment; it begins from the old centre creating a curving two-level mall with spectacular water features flanked by the very best in retail; top of the range food and beverage operations have major alfresco areas alongside the water. It’s complimented by the high-end fashion precincts boasting Gucci, Hermés, Prada, Louis Vuitton, Chanel to name but a few to become the largest collection of international luxury brands in Australia all under the one roof. ‘The Resort’ is crowned by the most spectacular, high tech, curving roof, at night lit by a rainbow of ever-changing colours.
But it’s not just ‘The Resort’; the rest of the redeveloped centre is as good as it gets. For the residents and visitors alike, the fresh food component is stunning. The latest Woolworths and Coles, opening out to an expansive fruit and vegetable display in turn, flanked by myriad specialty food shops to match anything anywhere.
And it doesn’t stop there either. The whole of Pacific Fair, now knocking on the door of some 125,000m2, the largest centre in Queensland and one of Australia’s largest, presents itself as one of the finest shopping centres in the world.
The reality is that Pacific Fair is more than a ‘shopping centre’. It’s emerged as an urban planned retail, entertainment and leisure area for the whole of the Gold Coast, linked to the latter’s various ocean fronted districts by the new light rail system running along the coast.
In terms of retail, entertainment and leisure, Pacific Fair has taken the high ground and will undoubtedly become the ‘downtown’ region of the Gold Coast as a whole. The Gold Coast and surrounds is beaches, holiday accommodation, hotels, shopping, entertainment and leisure. Pacific Fair will dominate the last three. It’s that good!
Pacific Fair celebrates official opening in style
At an exclusive red carpet event, a performance by the Queensland Ballet kicked off the ribbon cutting by AMP CEO Craig Meller and City of Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate.
AMP Capital CEO Adam Tindall hosted the proceedings, and said the redevelopment of Pacific Fair is the result of a long-term vision shared with AMP Capital’s investors, which has now become reality.
Tindall said: “I am very proud of what has been achieved at Pacific Fair. Many people have been involved in this project and created a must-visit destination on the Gold Coast, with a five-star holiday resort ambience and a unique indoor/outdoor environment reflecting the local lifestyle.
The Koi Boys, who shot to fame on the recent series The Voice, performed for the crowd, while Co-Founder of P.E NATION and Design Director of General Pants, Pip Edwards, performed a rare DJ set alongside DJ Sam Francisco.
Celebrities including AJE designers Adrian Norris and Edwina Robinson, fashion designer Alice McCall, Alison Veness, Bec Caratti, The Block’s Carlene and Michael Duffy, Charli Robinson, Claire Howell, Courtney Thorpe, Harper’s Bazaar Editor Kellie Hush, Kerrie Hess, GQ publisher Nick Smith, Sally Pearson, The Voice’s Tash Lockhart, and Vogue Australia Editor, Edwina McCann were spotted in the crowd, sipping champagne and taking in the surroundings. The event was hosted by television presenter Natalie Gruzlewski.