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Singapore firm acquires Maldives resort for USD65 million

Fathmath Shaahunaz
09 October 2016, MVT 10:32
Aerial view of over-water villas being developed in K. Kohdhipparu. PHOTO/KOHDHIPPARU INVESTMENTS
Fathmath Shaahunaz
09 October 2016, MVT 10:32

Park Hotel Group of Singapore has acquired an island being developed as a resort in the Maldives for USD 65 million (MVR 1 billion) to open its first brand name in the archipelago.

A joint venture company founded with Park Group holding 30 percent of the shares and its partner Chip Eng Seng Corporation Ltd, one of Singapore’s largest construction firms, holding 70 percent had acquired the island of Kohdhipparu in Kaafu atoll. The island is being developed into a resort by Kohdhipparu Investments.

A private firm had reclaimed three hectares of land for Kohdhipparu, a sandbank situated a fifteen minute speedboat ride from Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (INIA). The firm had then sold it to Abdulla Mohamed, the owner of Amin Construction Pvt Ltd.

Kohdhipparu was awarded to Abdulla Mohamed’s Top Deck Investment in 2013 to be developed as a 250-bed resort in collaboration with the government. Currently 45 percent of the project has been finished.

In a joint statement, the two firms of Singapore disclosed that the resort will feature 120 villas with both beachfront and water options. The resort will also boast other facilities such as restaurants, swimming pool, spa and salon, children’s activity centre, beach club, and water sports and dive centre.

“Maldives, with its pristine natural landscape and 'one island, one resort' concept has established itself as a leading and an exclusive resort destination over the years," stated Park Hotel Group’s CEO Allen Law.

"Ongoing government initiatives such as the 2016 yearlong marketing campaign, expansion plans for the Male International Airport (INIA) backed by a strong destination brand image as well as additional flight options from key feeder markets signal a continued positive tourism outlook for Maldives.”

Branded as Grand Park Kohdhipparu, the resort is scheduled to be opened mid-2017.

Park Hotel Group is a real estate group which currently manages fifteen properties in Singapore, Malaysia, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea and Australia.

While total fifteen resorts are being unveiled this year, the government had earlier declared another twenty will be opened next year. With the development of new properties, major international brands have also entered the Maldives’ scene such as InterContinental Hotels & Resorts.

However, tourism in the Maldives is currently at a lull and the government had revised its earlier projection of luring 1.5 million tourists by the end of the year to 1.4 million. In particular, the Maldives is being faced with the declining number of visitors from China, its largest tourism market.

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