Billionaire Tony Fung’s $8 billion Aquis Great Barrier Reef Resort outside Cairns has been given environmental approval from the Federal Government, bringing the project a step closer to fruition.

Once completed, the resort would feature a staggering 3,750 hotel rooms across nine luxury hotel brands, 1,180 managed apartments, 130 managed villas, a world-class casino, 25,000-seat sports stadium, 45,000 square metres of convention and exhibition space and much more.

The project still requires the approval of the Queensland State Government, something Aquis Project Director, Pat Flanagan, told The Australian the company was hoping to achieve in a “timely manner”.

Aquis says the project at Yorky’s Knob would be “Australia’s largest, most exciting world-class integrated resort” and on completion would attract over 1 million visitors a year to the region and inject “billions of dollars into the local economy”.

The scheduled opening date of the resort, according to Aquis, is in 2018.