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n Where old meets new: Downtown Melbourne

The rugged terrain and wild waters of Australia certainly are powerful draws, but in Melbourne, organized sport is king.

Some of the country’s most popular sporting events and venues are here, including Melbourne Park, which hosts the Australian Open tennis tournament.

Meanwhile, the city is improving its hotel package. The Crown Casino Hotel, which is linked to a six-block-long casino, is adding a 469-room tower. Set to finish in mid-2003, the project will bring the total room count to 953.

In addition, the Yarra River Docklands district is being revived. The new 53,000-seat Colonial Stadium opened in March 2000, and under construction are marinas, restaurants, ferry terminals and almost 400 hotel rooms.

• T.B.

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