A four-star hotel will be built at Canberra Airport, five minutes' walk from the gate lounges, becoming a key factor in attracting international flights.
The airport management will construct and own the building and the chosen operator will be able to brand it.
Airport managing director Stephen Byron said the building would be stylish, befitting a gateway site. ''We are looking for a striking design,'' he said.
He is in talks with national operators who are interested in running the 180-room hotel.
''One of the reasons for moving ahead with the hotel is our confidence we will be able to deliver international air services in the next 12 months,'' he said.
The hotel is expected to open for Floriade in 2015, will create 160 jobs and inject more than $8 million a year into the ACT economy. ''This will bring to reality a proposal that has been part of our master plan for the airport since day one,'' My Byron said.
He said the hotel would be graded between 4 and 4½ stars and would include food, beverage and conference facilities, as well as a small gym.
''The design of the hotel will be modern and in keeping with the exceptional architectural quality of the terminal and adjoining Brindabella Business Park,'' he said. ''It will be located on a corner site between Pialligo Avenue and the southern on-grade car park adjacent to the axial roadway, five minutes' walk away from the gate lounges.
''This hotel will be uniquely placed to benefit from proximity to the new $480 million airport terminal as well as the international travel that the new terminal will facilitate.
''Canberra Airport is the gateway to the nation's capital and in close proximity to the CBD and Parliament House. It is the centre of a region of 900,000 people with a tourism economy the same size as the state of Tasmania. More than 3 million domestic passengers currently use Canberra Airport each year.
''As well, Canberra's hotel market has recorded strong growth over the past 10 years, averaging more than 6 per cent per annum.
''The airport hotel will be a welcome addition to the accommodation available for travellers to the national capital.''
The airport is inviting comments on the draft development proposal until December 5.
ACT Tourism Minister Andrew Barr said the construction of a hotel at the Canberra Airport was great news for tourism in the Canberra region. ''This new accommodation facility will provide important additional capacity for both leisure and business travel, particularly during peak visitation periods,'' he said.
''By way of example, accommodation availability in Canberra is often in short supply during parliamentary sitting weeks, while the recent British and Irish Lions tour game saw ACT accommodation booked out on the night of the match.
''Following the investment of $480 million in the construction of a new terminal and supporting infrastructure, Canberra Airport's 'coming of age' is now almost complete. The addition of a hotel on site will only enhance what is already renowned as a world-class airport facility.''
Mr Barr said the development of the hotel linked with the efforts of the ACT government and Canberra Airport management to secure direct international flight services for Canberra.
''A hotel at the airport will complement other new accommodation establishments in the ACT, including the Abode Apartment Hotel in Woden and the soon-to-be-opened Hotel Hotel in NewActon,'' he said.
The tourism industry contributes about $1.65 billion to the ACT economy annually and employs about 16,000 people.