China’s Dalian Wanda chairman Wang Jianlin on brink of Surfers Paradise Jewel deal

Multi-billionaire Wang Jianlin, chairman of Beijing super corporation Dalian Wanda, visited the Gold Coast last month, speaking with international property broker Roland Evans and Mayor Tom Tate.

Steven Haggart, CEO of Ridong Group’s Australian arm, yesterday couldn’t confirm a deal had been struck with Wanda or any other prospective buyers or investors.              

“Things have been positively progressing with Jewel, and there will be further clarity by the end of the month,” he said.

Once finalised, Mr Wang’s Gold Coast buy would be the latest in an international spending spree for his company, which owns 85 shopping plazas, 51 five-star hotels and 75 department stores and is also the world’s largest cinema company.

The three-tower Jewel development, on 1.13ha of prime beachfront land at Old Burleigh Rd bought for $81.8 million, was called in by the State Government and had its approval fast-tracked in 2012.

When it was announced in 2011, the plan featured three towers of 45, 41 and 35 storeys, housing 939 bedrooms – including 298 six-star suites and apartments.

There were to be two restaurants, shops, a ballroom, kids clubs, health spas and nine swimming pools.

The Jewel design, meant to symbolise three crystals on a beach, was created by award-winning US architect Chad Oppenheim in collaboration with Coast firm UPS Design.

A hotel operator for the project has never been publicly named.

In May alone, the Wanda group opened another two massive Chinese shopping plazas and a hotel, and it has bought billion-dollar properties in London and New York in recent years, converting them to five-star hotels.