Jetsetters behind Noosa’s COVID-19 outbreak


A HIGH-PROFILE Queensland couple is understood to have unknowingly invited an infected guest to a lavish 50th birthday party in Noosa's Sails restaurant, creating what has become the state's biggest coronavirus cluster.

Property kingpin Glen Wright and wife Juliette Wright, founder of the charity GIVIT and who last year received an Order of Australia for services to the community, hosted the exclusive beachfront dinner for 90 people on March 14.

Days later, Mr Wright's brother Peter, a butcher in Warwick, tested positive for COVID-19, with up to 30 other guests, including staff and three mothers from Brisbane elite private school, St Margaret's, being stuck down, and potentially, residents of Melbourne's blue-ribbon suburbs.

Glen and Juliette Wright on their rural property near Samford. Picture: Tim Marsden
Glen and Juliette Wright on their rural property near Samford. Picture: Tim Marsden

It is understood the infected guest had been skiing in Aspen.

One party guest said Mr Wright, whose 50th it was, and his wife did nothing wrong.

"They couldn't have known (about the infected guest) and the party was before the 14-day isolation was announced," the guest said.

"The night before, (Premier) Annastacia Palaszczuk pushed 25,000 people through for the NRL game in Townsville, and earlier on Friday, St Margaret's had a lunch for 600 people.

"Juliette made it clear to everyone that she understood if they didn't want to come (because of coronavirus); she is such an amazing person and does so much to help others."

In Victoria, health authorities are monitoring what is being called the "Colorado Ski Trip Cluster" as a source of potential coronavirus infections in Melbourne.

A man fighting for his life in hospital had mixed with someone who had reportedly been infected at an Aspen ski resort.

Another man who interacted with the travellers at a Geelong Grammar School cocktail party in Melbourne's Toorak also contracted the virus.

Flexigroup chairman and former Victorian Liberal Party treasurer Andrew Abercrombie said he had been in self-isolation since returning home from Aspen.

Originally published as Ski trip cluster: Jetsetters behind Noosa's COVID-19 outbreak