Going for gold on the ‘Goldy’

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Mack Horton
Mack Horton

For all the joy Mack Horton’s feats in the pool at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games in 2014 and the Rio Olympics gave him, his experiences out of the water were just as memorable.

He knows that the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, running 4 to 15 April, will be the same. “That X-factor is massive, especially for me as an Australian competing at a home Commonwealth Games,” the Olympic 400-metre freestyle champion and RACV ambassador says. “You go to an Olympics or world championships, there’s a vibe, an excitement through the streets. Going to Gold Coast, that’s going to be a massive part of what we get to experience.”

And for Games fans planning ahead, RACV Royal Pines Resort has flexible accommodation options to suit everyone – even campervanners.

Party time

But Mack, 21, and his swimming teammates will have their jobs to do before joining the fun, unlike the estimated 670,000 visitors who are set to turn the volume up a few notches on a city that’s already famous for knowing how to party. Gold Coast Tourism spokesperson Dean Gould puts it simply: “It’ll be the most festive time in Gold Coast’s history.”

Dean points to a parallel program of activities and celebration that will make ‘Goldy’ the place to be even if you don’t have a ticket to a Games event. Festival 2018 will lead the charge – a free arts and cultural extravaganza of music, art installations, interactive and family-focused events running across the city. Its intersection with Bleach Festival – an annual Gold Coast celebration of pop-ups to please all artistic palettes – promises to have everyone dancing, singing and smiling on the streets.

With eight resorts to choose from, find the moments you'll remember at an RACV Resort

‘So much to do’

Then there are the everyday Gold Coast treats. “Our normal array of entertainment offerings will still be running full bore – the theme parks, waterways, all the beach activity,” Dean says. “There’s so much to do, everything from world-class retail shopping to riding a rollercoaster.”

Festival 2018 will be spread over three main centres – Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach and Coolangatta – each of which will have sporting venues for Games events.

Outside the stadiums, popular Games staples such as the marathon, walk and cycling road race will cost nothing to experience. The vast majority of the courses will hug the beachfront to enhance the Gold Coast experience.

“It’s going to have a real Gold Coast feel to it,” Dean says. “You’ll see the beach culture, the laid-back nature, the embracing of visitors.”                              


RACV Royal Pines Resort has some accommodation available for RACV members, but if you fancy driving to the doorstep of the Commonwealth Games and sleeping in the shadows of the main stadium, the resort has that covered too.

After initially investigating ‘glamping’, general manager RACV Resorts John Morris looked at Royal Pines’ carpark and arrived at a cost-effective solution for travellers who want to make a pitstop at an award-winning five-star resort.

“People in Winnebagos and campervans can come in, hook up to power, there’s water, our golf clubhouse where they can shower, there’s restaurants, bars, a whole range of options,” John says. “The big plus is the location – it’s a 10-minute walk to the main stadium at Carrara where the opening and closing ceremonies and track and field events are.”

Members can take advantage of some great accommodation options at RACV Royal Pines with a diverse range of room types, ideal for couples, families or groups who want to enjoy the unique Commonwealth Games experience.

GO TO: racv.com.au/resorts

Written by Peter Hanlon
January 09, 2018

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