Dutch photographer among "world’s best job" finalists

3rd April 2009, Comments 0 comments

The 25-year-old photographer from Amsterdam is aiming to be the caretaker of a tropical island paradise off Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

SYDNEY – A Dutch photographer is among one of the 16 finalists shortlisted for the competition for "the best job in the world" – to be a caretaker of a tropical island paradise off Australia's Great Barrier Reef.

Magali, a 25-year-old photographer impressed the judges with her initiative during the selection process as she dived into a tank full of water into a busy Amsterdam square in the middle of winter.

The remaining candidates, including journalists, students, a teacher and an actress, come from 15 countries – and include a "wildcard" Taiwanese woman chosen by the public.

Tourism Queensland selected them from a global field of 50 – winnowed from a total of 34,684 applicants – for the six-month job of highly paid caretaker of Hamilton Island, off Australia's far northern coast.

Peter Lawlor, Queensland state's tourism minister, said the top 50 were so impressive that officials had upped the number of finalists to 15 from a planned 10.

"The final shortlisted applicants come from 15 countries, range in age from 20 to 38, comprise 10 men and six women, and include students, journalists, TV presenters, photographers, a receptionist, radio DJ, teacher, charity event manager and an actress," said Lawlor.

"From organising stunts like scuba-diving in a tank in Amsterdam, dressing up as a mermaid in downtown Singapore and spruiking at a London pub, to conducting hundreds of media interviews, the top 50 have shown an incredible amount of ingenuity and passion," he said.

The 15 will vie with Taiwanese interpreter Clare Wang, who won the wildcard slot thanks to the public, after attracting 151,676 votes, almost three times as many as her closest rival.

She and the other finalists will be flown to the island in early May for the final selection process, with the successful candidate announced on 6 May.

The winner will be paid AUD 150,000 Australian dollars (EUR 79,700) for a six-month contract and free airfares to the tourist paradise.

In return, the winner will be expected to have as much fun as possible – soaking up the sun, swimming, snorkelling, sailing – and report to a global audience via weekly blogs, photo diaries and video updates.

On the Tourism Queensland’s website, Magali said she hopes to live on the Great Barrier Reef islands so she is able to “live the ‘pura vida’, in complete harmony with nature, respecting and discovering it to the maximum”.

Magali said she enjoys travelling and has been to many different parts of the world. Her different experiences in her extensive travels have enabled her to develop a passion for the environment and eco sustainability.

“I knew I wanted different things in life than most: if life was supposed to be like a box of chocolates, then I wanted to sample as many flavours as possible.”

AFP / Expatica

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