IT'S official: over-50s can soon get a taste of the Hamptons, Toowoomba style, with turning of the sod and work beginning on the $71 million Seachange Lifestyle Resort at Harristown.
Ultimately comprising 162 houses, the first stage for Brisbane developer Pradella Property Ventures is 20 homes and a summer house to be finished by September, with a full country club to be built later.
Sales and marketing director Alex McMahon said the resort would be a game-changer in the over-50s market.
This is definitely no retirement village, but marketed as an aspirational way of life aimed at a younger demographic.
The focus, Alex said, was on "active community living", reflecting the company's ethos of "healthy mind, body and soul".
"You aren't just buying a house, you're buying a lifestyle, with a real Toowoomba look and feel to it," he said.
The summer house, for example, is designed to take advantage of its north-easterly position, looking directly onto Adams Park, and features exposed white beams, timber floors, wide open verandas and lots of glass, looking directly over the heated pool, a covered outdoor area with barbecue and fire pit, and a full-size tennis court.
Internally, there's a kitchenette and bar to promote interaction, and a small library - and that's before we even start to talk about the larger country club, with its indoor heated pool, Men's Shed, art studio, bowling green, gymnasium, cinema and ballroom!
"We've definitely moved away from the idea of high-density retirement living for over-50s," Alex said, adding that the developer's 414-home resort at Arundel on the Gold Coast was Queensland's most awarded, and residents averaged just 63 years old.
"We're trying to invigorate the community to get involved and upskill in things they've always wanted to do," he said.
Houses, 75% of which will be north-facing with an alfresco deck, will start from $375,00 for two bedrooms, two bath and one-car garage, up to $515,000 for a 200m sq two-bed and multi-purpose room, two bath, kitchen with walk-in pantry and double garage.
With the number of Australians aged 55-75 expected to nearly double in the next 25 years, the company's Emerald Lakes development on the Gold Coast selling out its first 124 homes in 18 months, and a new development just launched in Coomera, it appears Pradella is pretty confident it's got the recipe for success.
"We're the landowner, the developer and the builder, and people like that and the confidence of dealing with a family company of over 59 years," Alex said.
For details, call 1800 54 66 55 or go to www.seachangelifestyleresorts.com.au.