Hamilton Island is one of the most popular Islands in the Whitsunday largely because of being largest inhabitable island. Located in Queensland, Australia, the island was formed just like most of Whitsunday group of islands due to the rising of sea levels that created many drowned mountains which are situated very close to Australia’s east coast. Over the years, the popularity of Hamilton Island among tourists has increased considerably and was in fact featured in the promotion of the ‘Best Job in the World.’ The island usually hosts the yearly Hamilton Island festival for Race Week Yachting. During this festival, over 150 yachts usually gather from New Zealand and Australia for racing around the islands for one week.
At least two successful films have been filmed on Hamilton Island i.e. Muriel’s wedding of 1994 and the Fool’s Gold released in 2008. Bryan Byrt and Keith Williams purchased the island in 1975 and Keith Williams started the construction of the resort complex and Hamilton Island harbor in 1978. The resort was opened in several phases between the year 1982 and 1984. Unfortunately, the central part of resort complex was destroyed by a fire in 1985 and its rebuilding was completed in 1986.
The Whitsunday Holiday Apartments that stand on Hamilton Island currently opened their doors in 1986 and Reefview Hotel followed thereafter in 1990. About 9 years later, a five star Beach Club was opened on the island. The resort was acquired by the Oatley family in 2003 who engaged in expansion developments and this included the expanded Marina precint, building of another luxury resort by the name qualia and a yacht club which opened in 2008.
Unlike most of the islands found off Australia’s east coast, Hamilton Island has been reserved exclusively for the purpose of tourism. But recent times have seen the island continually cater for the ever increasing number of residents which include employees of various businesses being set up on the island as well as people who are opting to go for retirement on the island and enjoy a classic lifestyle. Currently the island has been leased by Oatley family from Commonwealth government. The Oatley family runs and owns the Hamilton Island Enterprises that operate most of the businesses especially accommodation facilities found on the island.
Hamilton Island Airport on this island boasts of being the only airport which is large enough to adequately accommodate a large commercial aircraft. There are also several ferry services that cater for transportation needs on the island and are precisely for passenger transport only. Motor vehicles from mainland Australia are not allowed on the island apart from those offering island public transport services and for trade people. There are many golf buggies that serve the needs for private transportation on the island and tourists can rent if they wish. In most cases, you will find some accommodation packages that include them. There is also public shuttle bus which operates on Hamilton Island and serves accommodation sites and other point of interest on the island.