STAR STRUCK: Local real estate agent Brad Sobott (right) rubs shoulders with Richard Branson late last month. Photo: Dean Summers
STAR STRUCK: Local real estate agent Brad Sobott (right) rubs shoulders with Richard Branson late last month. Photo: Dean Summers

Mission: Get Branson to Airlie

AN AMBITIOUS local has put a challenge to Richard Branson. PRDnationwide real estate agent Brad Sobott rubbed shoulders with the global megastar at a conference in Brisbane late last month.

Not content with merely meeting him, Mr Sobott is conjuring a plan to lure Mr Branson to the Whitsundays.

"I'm trying to come up with an idea to involve it with a world record of some sort," he said. "We're going to try and get him to come to Airlie and be part of that."

While the daring stunt is very much still in the preliminary stages, Mr Sobott said brainstorming sessions on ideas had been productive.

"We're thinking of involving swimming togs. It might be the most amount of swimming togs on a beach, or something like that," he said.

"We need to come up with some concept, making it funny and making it about him.

"The idea is to throw something to him that would make him go, 'Oh that's funny - what a great place to do it'."

The idea is to highlight the Whitsundays as a tourist destination and also promote the prospect of direct international flights into the region.

Mr Sobott, who previously helped raise awareness of the importance of direct flights from Sydney and Melbourne with an "awareathon marathon" from the airport to the Airlie Beach main street, said hosting someone with Mr Branson's profile could result in increased exposure.

"We want to get him here and get him in the spotlight and shine the torch on Airlie Beach," he said.

Mr Sobott said discussions to get Mr Branson to Airlie Beach were ongoing.