An ambitious vision to develop a swathe of land between Dongara and Geraldton into a lavish eco-resort, complete with hot springs and short-stay accommodation, has been revealed. Melbourne-based developer Richard Zee has purchased the 142ha property, with plans to turn it into a stunning eco-tourism development, with hot springs, cabins and links to the Abrolhos Islands. A former geologist and mining analyst, Mr Zee spent time on the WA coast during his years working in mining, and was drawn to Bookara, 30 minutes south of Geraldton. The property is believed to have been bought in the last few years, but the developer has only recently publicised his resort plans, releasing a detailed promotional video depicting what the development will look like, expected to eventually include two big resorts, dozens of cabins and hot springs and a chunk of land set aside for conservation. The developer hopes to bring Eco.Living Group’s pilot project, Abrolhos Seascape, to the Mid West with 28 pools and 30 cabins in the first year, extending it to 50 cabins by the third year. The company anticipates $30-40 million for the development of the hot springs, but is not known how much the rest of the resort will cost. The project would cover 730m along the coast and is expected to promote trips to the Abrolhos, as well as include helipads for scenic flights. “During COVID a lot of people reassessed their life goals and what they were doing. Is it good for nature? The environment? Is it creating a sustainable future for our kids? Climate change is a real threat,” said Mr Zee, who aims for the resort to have a net zero carbon footprint. As part of the project, 50ha of the space will be dedicated to environmental conservation, while the resort and cabins are proposed to be supported by a solar farm, geothermal heating and other sustainable infrastructure. Mr Zee acknowledged the importance of engaging First Nations people throughout the process, and would look to centre some of their eco-tourism programs around Indigenous cultural awareness. The project is expected to create 181 jobs once finished, with more roles created during construction. It is anticipated planning will be submitted for development approval by the end of the year.