World´s leading eco resort and spa in danger of being liquidated
Only months after being voted 2012 “World’s Leading Eco Resort and Spa” at the prestigious World Travel Awards and “Best Spa on the Continent” at Spa Finder USA World Spa Awards, the iconic Daintree Eco Lodge & Spa is facing liquidation.
How is it possible, you are probably asking, that an iconic Australian business like this, with over 50 national and international major awards for excellence in spa, health and wellness, eco, nature, green and travel experiences under its belt is now in imminent danger of having to close its doors to the public? Why is it that one of the emblems of Queensland tourism is not supported adequately by neither private or governmental entities? Why have the owners of the lodge had to run until now and for over 13 years a program to encourage Aboriginal employment from their own pockets?
Terry and Cathy Maloney, owners of the Daintree Eco Lodge and Spa said sponsoring the Aboriginal Champions program from their own coffers has landed the couple in dire financial straits and their repeated calls for a lifeline from governments and big business have been rejected.
“More than 130 people have gone through the program and gone on to fantastic jobs after we taught them how to make money, save money, go to see the bank manager, buy a house or a car,” Mr Maloney explained to News.com.au. “It’s an employment program for Aboriginal people that actually works. No other program is getting outcomes like this, certainly not the ones the Federal Government is putting money into.” Mr Maloney has appealed to the Commonwealth’s Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin seeking a grant for the Aboriginal Champions project, but so far he had no success.
National Australia Bank appointed receivers KPMG yesterday and it is assessing how long the lodge can run under current conditions.
The liquidation of the lodge would be a tragic loss for Queensland tourism and a devastating blow to the promotion of Aboriginal employment in the area. To express your support for the Karrba foundation, the organisation started by the Maloneys to improve the lives of Aboriginal people, you can contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07 4098 3511.
We need more than fingers crossed for this one but we should definitely do our best to ensure that this Australian icon keeps afloat.