Sri Lanka Galle Face group to build resort on Maldive island

Wednesday, 4 February 2009 08:11

Sri Lanka's Galle Face Hotels Group plans to build a 100-room luxury resort hotel on an atoll in the Maldivian archipelago, a senior official said.

Lakshman Sirimanne, group director, corporate development of the Galle Face Hotel group, said construction work on the resort on Gaafu Atoll, south of the capital Male, is about to begin.

"We have obtained all necessary approvals and completed the surveys of the island," he said.

"We're now in the process of fencing the land and building the quarters required for construction workers."

He said it was not possible to immediately reveal the group's investment in the project.

The Galle Face Hotel group is also putting in place the necessary ancillaries such as desalination units and sewerage units, as well as backfilling the island and dredging for a small jetty.

The company hopes to complete construction of the 200-bed resort by end-December 2009 and get into operation early next year, Sirimanne said.

A new subsidiary company of the Galle Face Hotel group has been incorporated in the Maldive islands.

The new hotel is sited on an uninhabited island which also has a domestic airport.and airport buildings.

The new Maldivian president Mohamed Nasheed, during his recent visit to Sri Lanka, announced that the Galle Face Hotel group was embarking on the project and also made a request for the airport to be modernized.

The Galle Face group started on the project after winning the bid for the island when it was put up for bids by the Maldivian government, which is focusing on developing the Gaafu Atoll.

Gaafu Atoll (also named Huvadhoo Atoll) is touted by surfers as having some of the best waves in the Maldives. It is also known to be good for scuba diving, snorkeling and sailing.

It is among the outer atolls of the Maldives and promoted as a surfing attraction without crowds as they are further away and harder to get to than the North and South Male Atolls


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