This gorgeous island now belongs to a man who is a member of Irish nobility, a relative of the first president of Nauru and Chancellor of an ancient religious order, Count Desmond Oppenheimer (below).
This gorgeous island now belongs to a man who is a member of Irish nobility, a relative of the first president of Nauru and Chancellor of an ancient religious order, Count Desmond Oppenheimer (below). File

Count invests in Island

WHAT does a member of Irish nobility, a relative of the first president of Nauru and Chancellor of an ancient religious order do when visiting Hervey Bay?

If the man in question is Count Desmond Oppenheimer, he buys property - in this case, entrepreneur Aussie Rob's former playground, The Island at Toogoom.

Count Oppenheimer, who emigrated from Ireland to Australia as a child and entered a career in the military, already owns one property on the Esplanade as well as properties in Nauru and the Melbourne CBD.

His role as Chancellor of Oceania for the Sovereign Order Of The Ecumenical Knights Of Malta - affiliated with the Freemasons - means he spends his days jet-setting between Australia, Naura, Italy and other far-flung places.

But Count Oppenheimer said he was looking forward to making the Fraser Coast his permanent home.

"The Fraser Coast has a great future; we bought a home at Hervey Bay and enjoy it very much there," he said.

"I will be at Toogoom most of this year, and intend to live there, but I am not into any development ideas."

He said he would spend his days on The Island fishing and crabbing with his 10 grandchildren and writing a historical book.

"My wife is of the Tribe of the Snake, 'Eamwit'. Her uncle, Hammer De Roburt became the first president of Nauru when independence took place in 1968," Count Oppenheimer said.

"I do travel frequently but that is now coming to a close; the island will provide the creative atmosphere conducive to the completion of my work on the history of Nauru."

An indigenous caretaker will live on the property, which Count Oppenheimer said would not be developed any further except the possible addition of a boat shed.

"The property will stay as it is - I am keen on gardening and fishing there," he said.

"The Fraser Coast Regional Council have taken care in development of the area and it is a credit to them.

"I feel fortunate to have acquired the section of land and also to spend the afternoon of my life there. Maybe, one day it will have a name."

The property was sold through Ray White coastal properties agent Scott Wagner after a $4.1 million contract between "Aussie" Rob Wilson and title-holder Brett Gunderson fell through last year.

He said the sale, which went unconditional on Monday, had sparked the curiosity of buyers looking at the Toogoom and Hervey Bay areas.



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