Creating Island Resorts

Creating Island Resorts

Creating Island Resorts

Creating Island Resorts

Synopsis

Creating Island Resorts studies the tropical island resorts, the areas they occupy, the people who live and work there and the tourists who visit them.

Excerpt

To the European mind, tropical islands are bountiful places offering travellers an escape from everyday realities and a temporary materialisation of what is imagined to be the ‘good life’. the jet aircraft has brought island paradises tantalisingly close for the relatively affluent of the world. For North Americans the Caribbean is delightfully close as are the islands of the Indian Ocean for more affluent South Africans. Despite their undoubted appeal, neither the Caribbean nor the Indian Ocean have quite the intoxicating attraction of the South Pacific. These previously most inaccessible of tropical islands now face the challenges of adapting to an influx of pleasure-oriented travellers from throughout the world, or in the case of those which have not yet established themselves as tourism destinations, to solicit such an influx.

The Pacific islanders who inhabit the ‘paradise’ to which so many Europeans have aspired are also under pressure to adapt to the temporary holiday migrations from across the globe. Australians have long regarded the South Pacific as their ‘back-yard’ and the South Pacific ‘paradise’ has always been more accessible for them than for residents of the Northern Hemisphere. Australian travellers are having to share Pacific holiday resorts with visitors from throughout the world. But do Australians really need to travel overseas to find the type of paradise so deeply embedded in the western imagination? Australia’s own Great Barrier Reef is fringed by numerous tropical islands. Does this imply that paradise may be experienced without the need for a passport? Do Australians weigh up the prospect of travel to Queensland with its connotation of patriotism and of ‘buying Australian’ against the option of an overseas trip? Might both destinations lose their allure because paradise has become too easily accessible, too prone to excessively hyperbolic promotion and too easy to compare image with reality?

Tourism paradises have been described as ‘the most exploited commonplace in international advertising’ (Giesz 1968:103). European ideas of an

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