Northbridge: Great Southern Hotel completes $3.5 million makeover

L-R Arith Ratnawibhushana (GM Great Southern Hotel Perth), Syed Irfan (Group FC Acostay), Michael Dryka (Director Michael Dryka Architect's), Mark Hughes (Director Bauen Projects), Abdul Ghaffar (owner GMT Hotels) and Robbie Owaijan (Group GM Acostay). Photo: Andrew Ritchie
L-R Arith Ratnawibhushana (GM Great Southern Hotel Perth), Syed Irfan (Group FC Acostay), Michael Dryka (Director Michael Dryka Architect's), Mark Hughes (Director Bauen Projects), Abdul Ghaffar (owner GMT Hotels) and Robbie Owaijan (Group GM Acostay). Photo: Andrew Ritchie

WITH Perth’s accommodation competition heating up, one Northbridge hotel will this week unveil its $3.5 million makeover.

Great Southern Hotel owners converted underused function rooms on three levels into 33 king and queen sized rooms, taking the total from 94 to 127.

The security system was also upgraded and a private lounge added.

The remodel comes after Crown Towers Perth opened in December and Westin Perth hotel opened in April.

About 20 new hotels are also set to open by 2020, including the Ritz-Carlton at Elizabeth Quay.

Acostay group general manager Robbie Owaijan said it made sense to convert underused space to hotel rooms.

“We sit on a high occupancy – 99 per cent – and we don’t sell the function rooms every day, so it made more sense to turn them into rooms,” he said.

He said WA tourism had taken a hit in recent years, but he was confident it would improve.

“When we took over in July 2015, WA tourism was unfortunately hitting a decline,” he said.

“And with the introduction of more rooms means more competition, so we have to be very vigilant in watching the prices.

“I’m hoping with the opening of the new stadium that it will improve.”

Mr Owaijan suggested hosting more international sport competitions or international singers in Perth to boost tourism numbers.

“Melbourne has the Melbourne Cup and Sydney has the Mardi Gras; if Perth can do its own thing with its own identity, it will attract a lot of international visitors and put Perth back in the spotlight,” he said.

“I do believe in the next three or four years, Perth will start improving again.”

Tourism Minister Paul Papalia in February launched the “Hotel Perth” tourism campaign in Sydney to entice travellers to come to Perth.

In March, figures from Deloittes showed Perth’s hotel occupancy rate dropped 4.6 per cent, down to 76.5 per cent.

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