Millionaire Sam Chong to build another five-star hotel in Brisbane

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Mining and property millionaire Sam Chong continues to stamp his mark on the Brisbane hotel scene, revealing plans for a $325-million, five-star international hotel in Mary Lane.

The eponymous Mary Lane hotel will feature 286 hotel rooms and 184 luxury apartments, as well as a fine-dining precinct, and is expected to be completed in 2018.

Mr Chong and his development management team GMP Management plan to use the project to open and activate Mary Lane.

“We will turn the hotel inside out. It won’t be one of those big-entry hotels where you would go only if you have money,” GMP Management development manager Ian Pert said.

“We want to open eclectic restaurants and bars in the laneway … We don’t want it to be too corporate.

“The combination of a five-star hotel, luxury residences and dining precinct is popular in cities such as Singapore, Hong Kong and New York but until now has not been seen in Australia on this scale.”

The apartments and hotel will be on separate  levels, with the apartments sitting atop the five-star hotel.

The rooftop, which will have an infinity pool and barbecue areas, will be used only by apartment residents. One- to three-bedroom apartments will start from $500,000 to $1.8 million. Four penthouses will also be on offer.

Woods Bagot will design the property, which will be marketed by Colliers International.

Mr Chong’s company, Mary 111 Pty Ltd, will own the  property, including the 400-square-metre food and beverage retail spaces, which will be leased. .

Brisbane-based Mr Chong also owns the neighbouring five-star Four Points by Sheraton Brisbane through his other company, Felicity Hotels Group.

His son Paul runs the hotel.

Malaysian-born Mr Chong, 70, who arrived in Australia in the late 1960s to study, accumulated his wealth in mining. He worked in Tasmania and Christmas Island before landing at Queensland Coal Mine Management, now Jellinbah Group.

Now he owns a quarter of the company, which runs two operating coal mines in central Queensland’s Bowen Basin.

Mr Chong’s wealth has slipped as commodity prices have fallen but is still on the BRW 200 Rich List, with $382 million.

By Su-Lin Tan, Financial Review