John Keells Holdings will invest over US$ 850 million to double their room capacity within the next two years, Deputy Chairman Ajit Gunewardene said.
Speaking at the launch of The Future of Tourism Summit scheduled to be held at Cinnamon Lake on September 28, with international and local speakers he said that they currently have 2,200 rooms.
John Keells has already commenced work on the mixed development resort in Colombo 2 with an investment of US$ 650 million. The Waterfront Project stands as the largest private sector investment so far in Sri Lanka. This integrated resort has a 900-room hotel, apartment complex, office complex, convention centre, shopping mall and other facilities. This is being built as a “strategic development project,” under the Board of Investment (BOI) special approval.
He said that they will start building a further 400 to 500 rooms by the end of next year. These new hotels will be in Nuwara Eliya and Yala. The group is also looking at expanding their foot print in the Maldives.
“Tourism has proven to be a resilient industry, creating jobs, generating revenues and opening up exciting opportunities for industry players. Now more than ever, billions of tourists are traversing the globe freely, seeking out newer destinations.”
“We felt that conceptualizing the Cinnamon Future of Tourism Summit was very timely for Sri Lanka, which is experiencing a boom in tourism that is forecast to grow further in the coming years.”
“As the market leader in hospitality, we feel it is our responsibility to spearhead initiatives such as this summit so as to provide a clear direction forward for the Sri Lankan industry.
“We hope our peers in the industry will avail of this opportunity to witness some of the leading global industry experts share their knowledge on the future of tourism and responsible travel practices for driving revenue.”
“We do not want to wait till government does everything, we want to contribute to the industry and cater to increasing demand,” he said.
Courtesy: Daily News 10 September 2015