BUSINESS AS USUAL: General Manager of Big4 Casino resort van village Murgha Mack.
BUSINESS AS USUAL: General Manager of Big4 Casino resort van village Murgha Mack. Susanna Freymark

Northern Rivers caravan park sells for $14m

NOTHING will change in the short term at the Big4 Casino Resort despite new owner Trent Ottawa taking over the business as of today after spending $14.2 million to buy the van park.

The sign will stay the same with Big4 continuing as the brand and Murgha Mack as manager of the site.

"It's worked well to date and people are happy with it," Mr Ottawa said.

Mr Ottawa and his company Gateway Lifestyle will be happy too.

As one of Australia's largest manufactured housing village operators, the company is listed on the share market with a value of $800 million.

BIG NORTHERN RIVERS DEALS

Gateway Lifestyle has 53 properties and is a socially minded business that is sustainable, Mr Ottawa said, who bought his first van park in 2009.

"I founded the business and it is near and dear to my heart," he said.

The 39 year old businessman lives in Sydney and visits all his properties regularly including nearby Grafton and Kingscliff.

There is existing approval at the Casino site to double the number of homes and Mr Ottawa said they will review the facility in the next few months.

Gateway Lifestyle founder Trent Ottawa has bought Casino's Big4 Resort for$ 14.2 million.
Gateway Lifestyle founder Trent Ottawa has bought Casino's Big4 Resort for$ 14.2 million.

The business caters for people aged over 55 years offering manufactured homes and an active community within the park.

"People can be lonely in their suburbs," Mr Ottawa said.

The appeal of the park villages is demand from an ageing population for affordable accommodation.

Residents can travel in their motorhomes and have their homes looked after by grounds staff.

Two per cent of Australia's population call a manufactured house home compared to 6% in the US.



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