Noosa pulls for flooding victims
Queensland – beautiful one day, flooded the next and coming back fighting as soon as everyone dries out.
And a high and dry Noosa, as much as any place, is offering some much-needed shelter for the flood-struck.
One of the first tourist accommodation services to put its hand up was Accom Noosa with two three-night stays for people who have had their lives devastated.
Accom Noosa director Richard Stephens said at the moment most of the flood victims were too busy trying to get their homes and their lives back on track, to inundate his staff with requests to take up the generous offer.
“We are taking calls, but we want these stays to go to people who this can really help the most – people who have been the hardest hit by the floods,” Mr Stephens said.
“We want them to come up here and not just enjoy a roof over their heads, but really chill out.”
He said one possible recipient of a free Noosa recovery stay was a Chelmer woman whose Brisbane house was flooded to the roofline.
“We decided early on to help out like this – a couple of us were sitting around the table watching what was happening and saying we want to help out.”
At the same time, many of the Noosa resorts and accommodation houses can really do with a boost after the floods publicity created a drought in the usually late January bookings.
And now that is looking like flowing into February and even March as Mr Stephens and other operators are doing their best with the help of Tourism Noosa and Tourism Queensland to dispel the perception that all of Queensland is flooded out this summer.
Tourism Queensland last week launched a $400,000 Sunshine Coast marketing campaign saying that the Coast is open for business at bargain prices.
And Tourism Noosa CEO Steve Cooper said Noosa will be tailoring its own message to come up and take a break in flood-free Noosa with its own “timely and well targeted” marketing.
“February marks the kick-off, with tactical print, digital and radio campaigns across Australia to stimulate some immediate response following the floods and importantly, pointing to a strategic campaign aligned to a sustained winter promotion. There is no time for hesitation – no one can afford that.”
Mr Stephens said he knows for a fact that people have mistakenly written off Queensland as a tourist destination in recent weeks.
He said staff have been busy “settling the horses” and telling people who have rung up to council bookings that Noosa is open and just as inviting as always.
“We’ve even had people with bookings in March calling and saying they won’t be able to come because of the floods.”
But it is the lack of February/March bookings in recent weeks which have Mr Richards most concerned.
But Accom Noosa is leading the “flood relief” fight back – offering low season rates from mid-January on and their “February Frenzy” book for five nights and pay for four. Or you can book three nights and get a $50 voucher for Berardo’s bistro on the beach.