Reinforcing bullishness in post-war tourism rebound, Jetwing Hotels Group has firmed up plans to invest around Rs. 8 billion to expand its room strength in the country.
Jetwing plans to build 730 new rooms by the end of 2013, the target year for the completion of all the hotel projects. It presently has about 540 rooms in total. The investment set aside for all hotel projects in the pipeline is Rs. 8 billion.
“If all goes according to plan we will build 730 new rooms by the end of 2013, which is the target year for the completion of all the hotel projects. At the moment we have about 540 rooms in total,” Jetwing Chairman Hiran Cooray told the Daily FT. The investment set aside for all hotel projects in the pipeline is Rs. 8 billion.
The Group also plans to build a hotel in Dambulla and another in Trincomalee (in either the Uppuweli or Nilaveli area). “With our partners Chaudri’s, with whom we own Jetwing Sea and Jetwing Vill Uyana, we are now hoping to build an 80-room hotel in Kandy. With another partner we hope to build a hotel in Jaffna as well,” Hiran said.
Last week Jetwing began a fresh journey unveiling a new logo coinciding with the opening of the refurbished Jetwing Blue in Negombo. What started off as a six-room hotel with the home cook as Chef. Jetwing Blue is today a beautiful, sprawling 112-room property, loved by all, visited by many and envied by others.
It was renovated with an investment of Rs. 875 million according to Cooray.
With Jetwing Blue now done and delivered, Hiran is excited about the new projects in hand.
“We are quite excited with what we are doing with Blue Lagoon, which was Ceylon’s and Geoffrey Bawa’s properly planned resort. Built in 1965 and owned by the Milloyson family, Jetwing bought this property a little over a year ago and we are now transforming that with the same architect who worked on Jetwing Blue, Vinod Jayasinghe, assisted by Bawa’s biographer David Roston. We are bringing back the past glories of Bawa’s designs in 56 rooms on the lagoon side and eight luxury villas on the sea side. We will rename it Jetwing Lagoon.”
Construction is already in place and the new hotel is set to be launched early next year.
Jetwing is also looking at rebuilding the Yala Safari Game Lodge which it lost to the tsunami in 2005 along with a new hotel at Ward Place. Hiran asserted that the hotel would have 60 rooms and 23 apartments and would focus on the luxury side of the property, which would give it a competitive edge alongside the major hotels in the city.
“We have chosen a Singaporean architect and are doing a very contemporary hotel with large space and quite large bedrooms, the minimum size being 40 square metres.” This would see completion in 2013.