Madang Resort Hotel


It’s no surprise to discover that the Madang Resort Hotel is Papua New Guinea’s oldest because that explains how it came to secure such a spectacular location.

Madang Resort

Madang Resort

The 15-acre site, replete with orchid gardens and indigenous wildlife, has absolute water frontage onto Dallman Passage, beautiful Madang Harbour and Yamilon Lagoon. Guests in the executive suites are liable to get a shock first thing in the morning if a liner traverses the Passage, a mere stone’s throw away from their balcony!

The resort itself offers a wide range of recreational activities and facilities (tennis courts, large swimming pool, PADI dive centre). It also provides an ideal base to explore the area. Not least because the property is owned by former Madang Governor Sir Peter Barter, whose Melanesian Tourism Services is based on the premises. Opportunities for diving, deep-sea fishing and luxury cruising (from half-day trips upwards) are on the guest’s doorstep.

On the back of PNG’s strong domestic economy and a sharp increase in visitor numbers, Madang Resort is thriving: ‘We had an occupancy rate of around 80% last year,’ says Cameron Carseldine, the General Manager, ‘and we are adding another 20 rooms. We always seem to be adding new rooms, actually.’

Much of the resort’s business is derived from groups, particularly domestic, which are attracted by Madang’s appeal and the resort’s modern and extensive conference facilities (its convention centre has facilities for up to 600 guests).

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The biggest challenges faced by the operators of the Madang Resort relate to transport and infrastructure. Madang-based regional airline Airlink ceased operations in mid-2007, depriving the province of some of its regional air links, except for the routes to Port Moresby and Lae flown by Air Niugini.

The resort must maintain its own generator due to frequent power outages, and telecommunications services can also be unreliable. On a positive note, the entry of Digicel into the mobile phone market has led to improved coverage in the area – you can now drive the four hours down to Lae and get coverage all the way – and local internet services have also improved dramatically.

At the time of writing, the Madang Resort was busily preparing for a momentous Papua New Guinea-Australia Ministerial Forum, held in late April 2008, as Australia’s new Rudd Government set about the business of repairing its relationship with PNG.

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