Controversy Over Greek-style Club on Australia’s Bondi Beach

Australia’s iconic Bondi Beach. Credit: Athena Lao/Wikimedia Commons

Australia’s iconic Bondi Beach has made headlines for a proposed Greek-style beachside club, the first step into privatizing Sydney’s beaches. Currently under review by the Waverly Council, the Amalfi Beach Club has proposed sectioning off 30-40 meters (98 to 131 feet) of beachfront property during the summer season.

Locals have expressed many concerns over the privatization, stating that it is outright “un-Australian,” and asking the question “aren’t all beaches for all of us in (Australia)?” Worry that the proposed beach club would create exclusive beach access only for those who can afford it has not gone ignored.

In response, the Waverly Council stated in response “While Council considers all event ideas and proposals put before it, it must also balance the needs of the greater community within its consideration.”

This is not the first time the Waverly Council has considered privatizing part of Bondi Beach; the initial proposal was deemed unsuitable in May.

The current proposal would allow the Amalfi Beach Club to operate during a number of times over the course of the summer, with the club running only from Thursdays to Sundays between noon to 9 pm.

Entrance fees would be $80 per person for two-hour slots with food and drinks included in the price, and the ability to choose between the use of cabanas, booths, or sun loungers.