APOLLO Bay will have about 15 new jobs on offer after civic leaders approved plans for a bar and restaurant with ocean views.
Colac Otway Shire Council voted at a planning meeting this week to allow a renovation above Georges Food Court in central Apollo Bay.
Councillors debated the proposal for two hours before granting a permit for the development, which will have permission to open until 1am, including permission to keep a first-floor deck open until closing time.
Owner Michael Papadopoulos said he was excited to hear he could build a Greek restaurant and lounge bar, which will have a deck overlooking the water.
“It’s good for the town, it’s good for tourism, it’s good for everyone, so we’re pretty happy,” Mr Papadopoulos said.
“This has created at least 30 jobs. At least half will be from the community,” he said.
Mayor Lyn Russell said the added jobs would be a boost for Apollo Bay.
“There is shortage of full time job and part time jobs down there,” Cr Russell said.
“Anything to increase employment for a regular basis would be fantastic,” she said.
Mr Papadopoulos said tourists and Apollo Bay residents would enjoy the new venues.
“We’ve got a lot of tourists now. They’re coming and they’re coming and there’s nothing to give to them,” he said.
“You have to give them things, restaurants, nice fine dining,” he said.
The development’s architect John Riches said the venue would make the most of Apollo Bay’s views.
“This location has stunning views from the first floor over the bay and the harbour,” Mr Riches said.
“The future operator of the lounge bar, who is the owner of the land, has operated several bars in Greece overlooking the Adriatic and wants to bring that experience to Apollo Bay,” he said.
Mr Papadopoulos said he wanted other business developers to invest in the town.
“Hopefully this will bring other people with money into the town, I don’t want to be the only one doing it,” he said.
“I’m just the first one who went a step further to create something like this in the town.
“Surfers Paradise wasn’t grown in one day, someone took the first step.”
Mr Papadopoulos and wife and co-owner Vi Gimbiritis were both born in Australia and lived in Greece before moving to Apollo Bay.