Inside the Commonwealth Games Village
Before it becomes the home away from home for 6,600 athletes and team officials, media from around the Commonwealth gave the Commonwealth Games Village a test run.
The media were given an exclusive tour of the Village and a test run of all the facilities that will be enjoyed by the athletes from March 25.
Situated on 29 hectares, including seven hectares of open parklands, the Village features 18 new buildings; housing 1,252 dwellings - that's 1,170 apartments and 82 townhouses.
Broken up in three zones - International, Residential and Operational - the Village has been architecturally designed to capture the essence of South-East Queensland and has embraced the city's colourful cultural heritage, paying special attention to sunlight, shading, natural air flows and water.
Village Mayor and Olympian Sara Carrigan OAM greeted the media in the Residential Zone.
Six iconic Queensland zones (Beach, Outback, Rainforest, Reef, Sunset and Surf) will accommodate athletes and officials and offeri services such as laundry , refreshments and TV and computer spaces and four residential pools.
First stop of the day was the Games Room. Featuring a number of arcade games, pool tables and game consoles, the athletes are set to enjoy some friendly competition in their down-time.
Next on the agenda was the Village Gym, which will be managed by qualified strength and conditioning staff.
Designed with guidance from the Australian Institute of Sport and equipment, the gym features free weights, stretching areas, power racks, and weight and cardiovascular machines - majority of them provided by GC2018 Sponsor Technogym.
Adjoining the gym is the Athlete Recovery Area which provides athletes the opportunity for plunge baths, including accessible baths, saunas and massage and consults from the Sports Medical personnel.
Expecting to treat 270 patients each day, the Polyclinic will service the medical needs of all residents 24 hours a day. Consisting of Optometry, Podiatry, Radiology and Wheelchair and Prosthetic services and emergency medical care, the Polyclinic will also have a mobile dental van - a Commonwealth Games first.
Fact: A doping Control Station will also be housed at the Village with samples stored for seven years.
GC2018 Ambassadors Brenden Hall OAM, Matt Denny and Damon Kelly and Commonwealth gold medallist swimmer Meagen Nay also joined the group, providing their thoughts on the Village and all its facilities.
Midway through the tour, the media found themselves in the Village Heart - the centrepiece of the Village.
Inspired by the Gold Coast's Natural Bridge rock formation and waterfall, the Village Heart is a place for the athletes and team officials to come together and relax.
Alternatively, they can go for a stroll, run or enjoy all the entertainment on offer in the seven-hectare green space 'backyard' featuring walking paths and stages for live entertainment.
In the International Zone, athletes can meet with designated friends and family, enjoy Festival 2018 events, as well as visit retail shops, the Optus phone store, Salon XXI or just hang out at the bar
Stopping in to give his tick of approval was Jamaican superstar sprinter Yohan Blake.
"The colours are amazing, the facilities ... I love it,” Blake told media. “It’s going to be a great Games, we’re going to have a lot of fun.”
A self-serve buffet style dinner rounded out the tour with a number of menus available, including 'Asian', 'Halal' and 'Western' and was complemented by a salad and dessert bar.
The Main Dining is expected to serve over 18,000 meals daily and will meet a variety of requirements including dietary, nutritional, recovery, cultural, religious and medical.
Finally, it was bedtime, with media sleeping in the same rooms as the athletes are set to unwind in.
All beds will boast a distinctive Indigenous motif quilt which athletes can take home and will accommodate all types of athletes with 516 accessible beds and expandable bed options.