Friday, January 29, 2010

Cambodia's Grand Lion Group Enters Hotel Business

Cambodia-based Grand Lion Group, has entered into a management agreement and related agreements with Marriott International to operate the 218-room Courtyard by Marriott Siem Reap. The agreement is the first of its kind for the Grand Lion Group whose primary business is real estate and agriculture.

The Courtyard by Marriott Siem Reap will be located on a 1.2-hectar site, approximately 15 minutes away from the UNESCO World Heritage site of Angkor Archaeological Park, one of the most important archaeological sites in Southeast Asia. Stretching over some 400 sq km, including forested area, the Angkor Archaeological Park contains the magnificent remains of the different capitals of Khmer Empire, from the ninth to the 15th century. They include the famous Temple of Angkor Wat at Angkor Thom and the Bayon Temple with countless sculptural decorations. Angkor became listed as a World Heritage site in 1992 when UNESCO set up programs to safeguard the site and its surroundings. Towards the end of the 1990s, political stability in Cambodia was much more apparent and the popularity of Angkor started attracting more mainstream tourism to Siem Reap.

Scheduled for completion in 2011, the Courtyard by Marriott Siem Reap will feature 218 stylishly-designed guestrooms with four-fixture bathrooms. In-room amenities will include Marriott's famous plush bed and bath linen and amenities, high-definition flat-screen television, high-speed internet access, mini-bar and safe. For dining and entertainment, there will be a casual, all-day dining restaurant, a Pool Bar & Grill, and a lobby lounge. Recreational facilities will include an outdoor swimming pool, a fitness centre and a full-service spa including a relaxation lounge and a foot reflexology area. The property will also feature approximately 600 sq m of function space.

Plans are also underway to open a resort hotel in the premier coastal holiday town of Sihanoukville and a business hotel in the capital city of Phnom Penh. Expecting to breaking ground in the third quarter of 2010, the Grand Palm Resort will comprise three branded International Hotels, a marina, 18- hole championship golf course and luxury villas and condominiums situated on a 200 hectare beachfront in the premier coastal holiday town of Sihanoukville. The Grand Palms Beach Resort is nestled between a tropical rain forest and the Gulf of Thailand providing an idyllic retreat for those seeking seclusion. Sited four hours by road from Phnom Penh, the Resort is on target to be ready by 2013.

The planned 200-room hotel in the capital city of Phnom Penh is expected to appeal to business and leisure travellers when it opens in 2013. A city of more than 2 million people, Phnom Penh is the capital of Cambodia and the country's commercial, economic and political hub.

President and CEO of the Grand Lion Group, Mr Lundy Nath explains, "After careful research and a thorough review of well-known hotel brands for two years, we selected Marriott International to be our key hotel partner in our hospitality division. The brand is world famous and internationally recognised fitting in with our marketing strategy, while meeting expectations for customers who are used to the level of comfort and standards associated with Marriott hotels around the world. It will appeal to our guests exploring the Indo-China region where Marriott International has already established a presence. With a large global distribution network, we expect to attract more visitors from Asia, Europe and USA."

The Grand Lion Group will invest a total of US$300 million in its ongoing hotel ventures around Cambodia. The Grand Lion Group hospitality division is expected to create over 500 job opportunities in the country, and the group expects future development plans in Laos, Mongolia and Vietnam.


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