State Getting Into Hotel Ownership
The process of increasing the number of hotel rooms available on mainland St. Vincent continues.
Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves gave assurance of this last Monday, when he announced at a press conference that he had held preliminary talks with a renowned hotel chain in the United Kingdom, centred on the construction of a hotel on St Vincent to be owned by government, but operated by a private entity.
He said that while he was in London on his journey back from Abu Dhabi, he had a meeting with one of the principal owners of a brand name hotel in the United Kingdom and the company is interesting in partnering with government to build a hotel.
"I am interested in getting some entity out of the United Kingdom,” said Gonsalves.
Against the backdrop of reference to the recent investment by a Canadian group at Mount Wynne/Peter’s Hope, the PM said, "And that is an important investment, but (we’re) looking to have one with an entity in the UK which has a certain heft.”
Dr. Gonsalves said that he was not going to disclose the name of the UK chain of hotels, only to say that it was a very "reputable international brand.”
He explained that this most recent initiative is in keeping with a Cabinet decision that endorses the state’s involvement in the construction and ownership of hotels, with management to be the responsibility of reputable entities: "whether locally, regionally or internationally.”
A Committee, headed by Camillo Gonsalves, the Minister of Economic Planning, has been set up to pursue this project, and it was anticipated that a delegation will journey to the UK sometime in March, to further the discussion in that regard.
Regarding a location, Gonsalves said that no specific spot had been identified, but that this detail would be attended to over time, with further discussions.
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