Tate’s message for Olympic athletes, officials: Come down and stay at our place

The Gold Coast will pitch to house Olympic athletes in local hotels as part of the south-east Queensland 2032 Summer Games bid, suggesting a scaled-down athletes village in Brisbane with athletes moving post-competition to Gold Coast resorts.

Mar 17, 2021, updated Mar 17, 2021
Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate has hired an evangelical pastor to an official role with the council. (AAP Image for Gold Coast Tourism/Tim Marsden)

Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate has hired an evangelical pastor to an official role with the council. (AAP Image for Gold Coast Tourism/Tim Marsden)

The Gold Coast is also in negotiations to accommodate the Olympic family, which includes International Olympic Committee dignitaries and officials from National Olympic Committees and International Sports Federations, should south-east Queensland be awarded the Olympic Games.

Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate said the split Brisbane athletes village and Gold Coast hotel plan for athletes could save money.

“We have over 21,000 room nights here on the Gold Coast. That saves a lot of building another athletes village,” Tate said.

“You run your race, play your sport, and while you’re waiting to enjoy the rest of the Olympics, where would you rather be? Gold Coast.

“You ask the question to athletes, they say that’s what they want. So it’s about improving their experience and their travel,” he told ABC Gold Coast.

With south-east Queensland named the 2032 Olympic and Paralympics preferred host candidate, Tate said it was essential the Gold Coast played a key role in the Games bid.

“I say let’s work together with Brisbane and Sunshine (Coast), but don’t be surprised if people go, ‘we prefer to stay on the Gold Coast.’ You know that’s how it rolls,” he said.

Tate has also indicated he wanted the city to host the Olympic family as part of the Gold Coast’s involvement in the Games.

The Olympic dignitaries traditionally stay in the plushest of hotels and enjoy the best of the host city’s hospitality during the Games. For the host city it is an opportunity to showcase the region and facilities for future events, functions and training camps and network with the world’s sporting powerbrokers.

But Tate said following the successful hosting of the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, the city was reluctant to fund new sporting infrastructure for the Olympics.

“The whole essence of this bid is about reinvigorating and utilising existing sporting infrastructure and enhancing our other infrastructure to make it work,” Tate said.

That meant the city would use existing stadiums and locations as well as hosting sports “dear to our heart” such as beach volleyball and surfing.

“If they want some sport that is not really relevant to the Gold Coast and want to build a facility for it, if it doesn’t fit our long-term legacy, I don’t want to fund that,” Tate said.

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