The Ministry of Tourism will hand over the famous Dhoogas Hotel of Gan island in the southernmost Addu atoll to Maldives Ports Limited (MPL) very soon, declared its CEO Mohamed Junaid.
Speaking on the “Raajje Miadhu” program of Television Maldives, Junaid said that the guesthouse's business will begin within two months of receiving the place.
Stating that it is an aim of the government to run the renowned Dhoogas, Junaid elaborated that this project is being taken by the public sector instead of awarding it to a private company in order to maximize job opportunities for the youth of Addu City and expand the tourism sector.
“It is believed that this project will create 250 job opportunities for the people of Addu.”
Aiming to establish 200 beds, MPL has already completed the design of the guesthouse as well.
Currently, assessments are ongoing to handover the guesthouse to MPL from private firm MVK Maldives.
Dhoogas was initially given to MVK under the regime of Former President Mohamed Nasheed as a subsidy company while awarding the transportation services in Addu and Fuvahmulah to MVK. The company had subsequently made changes to Dhoogas, most notably rebranding it to Gan Island Retreat (GIR). However, they were unable to run the place successfully.
Meanwhile, the Civil Court has recently given Bank of Ceylon (BOC) the rights to sell off Dhoogas over unpaid loans MVK owes to BOC. MVK Maldives had taken loans from BOC on December 2011 and February 2012. The Civil Court stated in its final decision towards the end of last December that BOC may sell or lease off the hotel if MVK does not pay back its loan of USD 2.7 million (MVR 41.6 million) within seven months.
Dhoogas was created as a state-run guesthouse during the government of Former President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom and several people of Addu had been employed in the guesthouse before it was awarded to MVK Maldives.