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No bull, Rocky's full as Beef Australia books out hotels

GLADSTONE hotels will be expecting hundreds of Beef Week stragglers to pour into town for a comfy bed and a beer after scarce accommodation options left in Rockhampton.

It is rumoured that even official delegates, celebrities and political big wigs will be staying in Gladstone hotels due to tight Rockhampton accommodation.

According to Trivago.com only two hotels out of 101 in Rockhampton have limited availability between May 6 and May 12.

Wotif.com has a similar story with sold out marked against all Rockhampton options.

Beef Australia 2015 saw over 90,000 visitors pass through the gates, and organisers are expecting there to be around 100,000 people this year from all over Australia and the world.

With four weeks to go until show time, one of Gladstone's biggest hotel's, Oaks, is already nearing full capacity for May with Beef Week guests booking in advanced last December and in January.

Oaks hotel manager Michael Cahill said it was unusual to see such a spike in Gladstone accommodation and to have a huge number of advanced bookings months ahead of the event.

"Gladstone is a peculiar town. Everyone books last minute so when you see a spike in accommodation it must be coming from way out-of-town," he said.

"It indicates to me that Rockhampton is full and Gladstone is the go-to.

"Many of the advanced bookings we've had are from guests who have made it clear that they are going to Beef Week. Some of these people are catching coaches to and from the event every and that's about an hour drive.

"It's a very long hour and that road usually has a lot of roadwork."

Mr Cahill said he has been made aware that hotels are paying for coaches.

"It's just such a big event and it grows bigger each year," he said.

"It is a very typical example that the event has outgrown the town. Unless you're involved directly with the event or you've been going all your life, you won't understand the height of it."

While Beef Week organisers have organised a number of accommodation options including the Homestay Program and Tent City Facility, Capricorn Enterprise CEO Mary Carroll said Gladstone and Biloela were good back-up options.

Ms Carroll told the Rockhampton Morning Bulletin in February that Capricorn Enterprises are pushing accommodation operators to look at their pricing and their stay requirements.

"We do still rooms available on the Capricorn Coast and I am aware that at least another twenty rooms will become available in Rockhampton in April," she said in the Rockhampton Morning Bulletin.

"We would like to see most of our guests stay in Rockhampton and the Capricorn Coast but we do reach out to Gladstone, Duaringa and Biloela and they are only up to two hours drive away which is less than the commute between the Gold Coast and Brisbane."


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