Hotel mogul Jerry Schwartz says his rebranded Hunter Valley resort will play a key role in the region's "pivot" away from mining.
Rydges Resort Hunter Valley, formerly Crowne Plaza, was launched at Pokolbin on Monday.
Dr Schwartz, who also owns the old Newcastle Post Office building and recently had construction commence on a hotel and conference centre at 317 Wharf Road in Newcastle, has partnered with new managers EVT planning to bring an expanded range of leisure offerings to the Hunter Valley resort.
The revamped resort features a tour celebrating Hunter Valley artists, an expanded range of family facilities, the creation of three new self-guided walking trails and new equestrian facilities.
"The Hunter Valley should be one of Australia's most preferred tourism destinations and we believe that EVT and Rydges can build on its current popularity and elevate it even further," Dr Schwartz said.
"The resort is pivotal to the Hunter Valley's recalibration away from its former mining background to a new era based on tourism."
Monday's celebrations also included the unveiling of an electric train, which was recently imported from the Netherlands.
The enclosed air-conditioned train will be introduced next week to transport guests around the resort.
In addition to Rydges Hunter Valley, Dr Schwartz also owns Newcastle Rydges, Newcastle Novotel and the former Centenary Antiques building at Honeysuckle, which was recently converted into a hospitality school.
He also owns the former Newcastle Post Office Building, which he bought in late 2018.
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