Blues could return to Coffs Harbour in 2017

THE NSW Blues could make a return to Coffs Harbour next year with doubts over the completion date of the team's new training facility in Sydney.

This year was expected to be the third and final time the team descended on the Novotel Pacific Bay Resort's elite training facility for its series of State of Origin camps.

But doubts over the readiness of the team's multi-million dollar training hub in Homebush could see the Blues return to the Coffs Coast in 2017.

"We're waiting for this year's camps to be over and hoping to approach them, and see if we can lure them back to Coffs Harbour," Novotel general manager Dene Zahner said.

"What they do love is the isolation, and the food, and it definitely keeps them here in Coffs Harbour".

Since 2014, the camps have attracted hundreds of Blues fans to our region each year and given the Coffs Coast its unofficial nickname - Blues Harbour.

Coffs Harbour City councillor Keith Rhoades said the Coffs Coast would continue to attract other sporting events.

"We've enjoyed the nine years we had the Wallabies in Coffs, we still continue to enjoy the Swans and we are fortunate to be selected to have the Blues."

Cr Rhoades said the financial benefit of the camps included the flow-on effects of the national media attention on the Coffs Coast when the Blues were in town.

"Bringing these events to Coffs Harbour generates in excess of $40 million each year," he said.

The Blues will leave Coffs Harbour on Sunday.

Novotel Pacific Bay Resort also continues to host AFL, NRL and A League pre-season training camps.

Adding to the region's sporting appeal, C.ex Coffs International Stadium has been upgraded to digital broadcast standard, which creates an opportunity for Cricket Australia to schedule a day-night Test.



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