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    quokka
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.

Alex & Lang - 13. A & L Ch 13

I was pleased that all the guest accommodation and commercial space were operational on the Graze Road site, with the cottages almost fully booked for at least five days of each week, and with most of the commercial space now filled with new businesses.

Meanwhile the work had just been completed to install six cottages on the three Plant Hill Road properties, and a four-suite commercial building on Highland Court property, which two have been leased out to a private medical group to establish a General Practice, which includes a visiting Dentist and Psychologist, with two of the cottages made available to accommodate staff from the commercial premises.

I had been informed by the shire council, that a 40-metre wide and 70-metre-deep block of land on Club Road, in the main settlement, was available for development, and I was asked if I was interested in developing a mixture of commercial and residential space on that 2,800 metres square or 0.69 acres of land, and I let them know that I was definitely interested.

I decided that with this offer to increase my investments on the island, I needed to consult with an architect, and after quite a few telephone calls, I managed to convince an architect and his assistant, to fly to Christmas Island, where I would accommodate them onboard the yacht.

After I had managed to secure an architect to come to the island, I decided to send and email to Sebastian, telling him about the new project on the island, and I received a response a few hours later, asking me if I would like assistance with financing the project, which I thought would be a good idea.

That evening during a long telephone conversation, we came to an agreement, to jointly finance the project, but Sebastian would remain in Europe, and monitor how it is progressing from there. After a few days of solid negotiating, the Shire council finally agreed to the island’s first high rise building, to be built on that development site.

It would be a total of nine stories high, with a mixture of three levels of commercial space, one level of recreational space and five levels of residential space. The architect had come up with a brilliant design, that would compliment the surrounding environment, as well as deal with the issue of building strength during the cyclone season.

Consisting of three hexagon shaped buildings, joined by an open central hexagon shape on levels 3 and 6 that will be additional open recreational space. The ground floor will consist of 12 commercial shopping spaces, while levels one & two will have two large and two small business spaces per level on each of the three buildings, allowing for 24 new businesses to be established or relocated there.

The building is cleverly designed so that the central open space, are located where there is existing vegetation, namely a number of established and very old Moreton Bay Fig Trees and Pandanas Trees, that will provide a shaded garden space.

Level three of the complex will consist of a lap pool, change rooms and fitness gym in one building, two large conference rooms with bathrooms and kitchen on a second building, and a sports centre on the third building, that has space for basketball or indoor cricket or indoor soccer, plus changerooms.

On level four there are 6 two-bedroom apartments in each building on each level, making a total of 18, available for holiday guest accommodation, while on levels five to seven, there are 18 residential apartments on each level, with a total of 54 apartments in total, as agreed to the Shire Council’s request. Finally, the top floor of the complex would have a penthouse on each of two towers, with additional rooftop space, and two cafes on the third tower, with outstanding views of the island and the ocean.

A three-metre-wide balcony on levels three, six and nine, runs around the outside of the central area, connecting the three buildings, but still allows for views of the central garden below, and views of the island or ocean from the spaces between the buildings.

I was just about to submit the plans for the complex, to the shire council for final approval, when the architect firm, came up with an alternative plan, that includes an additional tower and central recreation space, which would mean additional shops & business space, as well as additional holiday and residential apartments, plus space for a full-size restaurant on the top floor, plus an underground parking level had been added to the plan.

There was no need to make any changes to the layout at all, just the additional tower, and basement parking level, which would add a substantial amount to the building cost, but I agreed that it was a much better plan, and that is the one that I submitted to the shire council.

Just a few short weeks later, the plans for the Devonport Complex were approved to be built, as long as it was built to withstand Category Four Cyclones, and that the basement carpark be only half underground, so as to allow plenty of ventilation to that level, especially during the wet season.

This would not be an issue, since the building site is already over six metres above sea level, so there would be no issues with flooding at all. The additional holiday and residential accommodation were also welcomed by the council, in hope that a lot more tourists will come to visit the island.

The word got around the island very quickly about the new complex, and suddenly there was a flood of enquiries about leasing commercial and residential space in the new complex, which would take approximately two years to complete, as the builders would have to work around the wet season.

I agreed to allow the architect to be on the island for the duration of the construction of the complex, so I managed to arrange an older apartment for him to lease for when he is on the island. I was also looking at another two projects, with the recent purchase of some more land for the first project, only two acres in total, that is located directly across the road from the power station on Quarry Road.

Classed as light industrial mixed-use space, I was looking at building a row of sheds that could be used for a number of different industries, and it would include a reception and administration area, with two offices and a meeting room in one front corner, and separated by a central hallway, staff toilets & lunch room in the other corner, plus a large workshop space in the back two thirds of the shed.

With the two acres, I would be able to fit six of these sheds in that area, with a one-metre limestone wall and fence on top, to separate the different businesses, and along the front and back boundaries as well. A single access lane down the side, would provide access to the rear of the shed, where there is a small space for staff vehicle parking, that would all be under cover, from the sun and weather, and a few parking spaces at the front for visitors.

I had already received approval for this project, and with just shed builders required, I employed a separate company to build the cyclone coded sheds, which would come handy with the need for more space for builders, with the Devonport Complex about to start construction.

The other project, is to build guest accommodation and recreational facilities, near the centre of the island, on Lily Beach Road, where there is 16 acres of semi cleared land, directly across from the airport, with the back boundary just 400 metres from the airport runway, and the front fence is just 1.4 kilometres from my home on Headridge View.

With this project, I planned to build two rows of two- and three-bedroom ground floor bungalows for family guest accommodation, that will include a number of swimming pools and water slides, shade gazebos with barbeques, tables and seating, as well as a number of tennis courts, basketball courts, and also a large semi-indoor space, for indoor basketball and tennis, that can be used for functions.

There would also be accommodation cabins for up to six senior and twenty-four junior staff., located hidden away behind the restaurant, fitness gym and the semi-outdoor venue. This would boost the accommodation facilities for more visiting guests, and hopefully bring in a lot more tourists to the island, and with that in mind, it only took two weeks for the shire council to approved this project.

So, for the next two years, Alex and I were kept very busy monitoring all of our building projects on the island, with the semi-industrial sheds the first to be completed. Soon afterwards, the current plumbing and electrical contractors on the island, moved into their new premises, which provided them with much more roomier and modern facilities, that includes solar and wind powered generators, that provides virtually nil power bills for both businesses.

Both the Devonport complex and the Airport Family Holiday Resort, as Alex suggested we call it, were completed within a month of each other, with the resort having a total of 32 three-bedroom and 16 two-bedroom bungalows, which is going to bring an additional 96 people to the island minimum each week.

An official opening happened the day before the arrival of the very first guests for both complexes, with the majority of the staff been local permanent residents. Alex and I had been very careful with our screening process with employing the most senior staff for both complexes, with them been the only ones who were not local.

At the time of the opening of both new complexes, we now had five of the six industrial sheds leased out, with the shire council taking up one of those spaces, as a vehicle maintenance facility, while next door a new mechanic business had set up shop on the island.

With the two additional complexes providing more guest accommodation, this also brought in a new tour group company, well a well established one on the mainland, which was branching out onto the island, and the commercial airline was now doing four flights a week onto the island, instead of the two, and that’s not including the flights that Sebastian’s own Airline company was flying in from Darwin and Broome.

At Alex’s suggestion, we also provided accommodation on the yacht with a limit of just four cabins to be booked at any one time, so as not to have the yacht too over crowded, with the VIP suite kept empty, and the captain would do slow cruises around the island, as part of the two-day and three-night accommodation package, which begins with boarding the yacht at 1700 hours or 5 pm at Flying Fish Cove.

The next morning the yacht sets off slowly around the island, stopping off at West White Beach, where there is a 1.6 km walking trail, pass by Swell Lodge, stop off at Martin Point and at the Dales, which is a series of water courses, with some walk trails to explore.

Next is Winifred Beach, and the spectacular coastal ranges and cliffs, on the south west side and most remote part of the island. Followed by a stop at the limestone Blowholes, where the waves rush into some underground tunnels and force water and air out of the limestone holes on the surface, before going around the most southern point of the island, before stopping at Dolly and Gretel Beaches.

An overnight stop at the yachts anchorage, gives the visitors a spectacular sea sie view of the former Island Resort and Casino, which is now used mostly by staff and visitors to the Detention Centre. On the second day, the yacht backtracks a little to stop at Lily and Ethel Beaches, before stopping at a small floating platform and stairs, that lead up to the Island Golf Course, where the guests can have a game of golf or a drink and snack.

From there the yacht heads thirty nautical miles north out to sea, to allow the guests to experience what it is like to be out in the open ocean. After the distance is covered in a bit over two hours, the yacht will stop if the waters are calm enough, to allow guests to go fishing or even take a short ocean swim, snorkelling or scuba diving, if the conditions are good enough.

Once back in sight of Christmas Island, the yacht will return to and anchor in the Cove for the night, before the guests disembark after breakfast. Just a day after the first of these guest cruises, a review from one of the passengers, was seen by thousands of people, with tons of photos and a detailed description of the trip bringing a flood of enquiries about booking a cruise on this huge private yacht.

We had decided to restrict the number of cruises down to just one per week, as any more than that would create a lot of issues in regards to supplies of food, fuel and other essentials needed to have a smooth sailing cruise. The guest accommodation at Devonport Complex and at the Holiday resort, were also getting very good reviews, and they were both fully booked out for a number of weeks already.

Meanwhile, I had allocated one of the Penthouses as an official residence for Sir Lewis as the Indian Ocean Administrator, and he was very happy with his new residence, which is luxurious as well as secure. The Penthouse has a master suite, two guest bedrooms and a two-bedroom staff suite, so he had everything that he needed to relax, when at home on the island.

Alex and I had settled into a more relaxing mode now that all of the building projects were completed, and running smoothly, with a good flow of income coming in from all of them, of which half of it gets sent to Sebastian in Europe, as equal shareholder of the three projects.

Alex and I would usually be on board the yacht with one cruise each month, just so as to make things more interesting for us, and we were both happy to play host to the guests onboard, as we stayed in the owners suite on the Bridge Deck.

We would also spend some time at the Devonport complex, enjoying the facilities there, pretending to be just an ordinary guest, enjoying the restaurant, cafes, and the shops that are available there now, and we did the same at the holiday resort, which is close to our home, where we would use the tennis courts to have a few games, and enjoy the restaurant food there.

All in all we were happy with our new home and our new life on the island, little did we know that all of that was about to change dramatically.

Copyright December 2021 All Rights are reserved, Preston Wigglesworth
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
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Chapter Comments

Everything is going well for Alex and Lang with there new businesses.

But it seems problems may be round the corner, with imminent changes occurring.

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2 hours ago, Freemantleman said:

Bloody cliff'ies everywhere today!? Omg lol

I wonder if there is a vaccination for too many cliffies????

  • Haha 3
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An interesting chapter, one has to wonder if is is weather related front issues coming up or an induced front of stupidity!!

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11 minutes ago, drsawzall said:

An interesting chapter, one has to wonder if is is weather related front issues coming up or an induced front of stupidity!!

Probably both knowing @quokka

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6 hours ago, drsawzall said:

I wonder if there is a vaccination for too many cliffies????

Not sure ?? But I bet you can get a shampoo to kill them like headlice!!!

 

 

 

Oh no my mistake !!

That was crabs I was thinking of!!!!

😱😱😱🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣😉

  • Haha 3
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Cliff'ies cliff'ies  everywhere but none that have been explained nor resolved!?

Do we plead or shout & scream till the authors give us what we want !?

 

Please sir! Can I  have some more???

😱😱🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣😉

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9 hours ago, Freemantleman said:

Not sure ?? But I bet you can get a shampoo to kill them like headlice!!!

 

Funny Man

 

Oh no my mistake !!

That was crabs I was thinking of!!!!

😱😱😱🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣😉

 

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