8 new hotels to be built in “next couple” of years – Edghill

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Public Works Minister Juan Edghill has said that, over the next couple of years, Guyana could see as many as eight new hotels going up as the hospitality industry grows in tandem with the oil and gas sector. He said it is a transformation that the country as a whole has to prepare for.

Minister Edghill was at the time hosting a meeting, earlier this week, with travel agents. In addition to eight new hotels, he reminded that the Liza Two oil field in the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana would be coming on stream as well. That means an influx of foreigners and expatriates flying into Guyana.

“How do we create an environment for the kind of transformation that is going to take place in Guyana? Liza Two is going to be here, and that means we’re going to have a lot more expatriates coming in to work. People coming to travel. Our tourism sector will see at least eight new hotels being built over the next couple of years. We will be advertising worldwide for people to come to Guyana. What do we need to do?” Edghill questioned.

Edghill therefore noted the importance of working with stakeholders to create an environment conducive for this growth. The Minister also referred to the importance of local content amidst this growth, which he noted means more than just registering a local business.

“Local content for us is not just registering a local business. Because a lot of people believe if they register a local business (then) they are local. Local content is not just getting a director from Guyana to be registered in your business,” Edghill explained.

Back in March, the sod was turned for a US$15 million boutique hotel under the Aiden brand to be constructed in the heart of Georgetown. The hotel, which would feature 101 “smart rooms”, is being constructed as part of the Best Western Hotel and Resorts franchise.

Globally recognised hotel brands like the Hyatt, Hilton and Radisson hotels have also expressed an interest in investing in Guyana.

And in November, the Government of Guyana, through the Tourism and Commerce Ministry and the Guyana Office for Investment (GO-Invest), signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with investors for a US$90 million Hilton Hotel to be constructed at McDoom, Greater Georgetown.

The investors in the luxury hotel are part of a joint initiative among 658 Guyana Holdings, GREC Investment Group and TOTALTEC Oilfield Services Guyana Incorporated.

It was also announced that the 289-room branded hotel would be constructed in the already busy area which is home to many businesses such as Gafoors, Pritipaul Singh Investment, Guyana Shore Base Inc, Farm Supplies, and Schlumberger.

Construction was slated to begin in January 2021 and was expected to last for two years.

Around the same time, Chairman of the Giftland Group, Roy Beepat, announced plans to construct a US$100 million Radisson Blu Hotel as part of an international chain of hotels in several destinations around the world. According to Beepat, the agreement has already been finalised to offer this five-star package to Guyana.

Last year, local construction company R Bassoo & Sons Ltd entered into initial agreements with Marriott Hotels International and the Government of Guyana to design and build a Marriott Courtyard – a US$20 million project – at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA), Timehri, East Bank Demerara (EBD).

This was in response to Government’s Request for Proposals (RFP) for hotels to be constructed in the vicinity of Guyana’s main port of entry. The Marriott Courtyard at the CJIA would be the second Marriott Hotel brand in Guyana, and is anticipated to be open by 2023.

The Letter of Intent (LoI) with Marriott Hotels International caters for a 6-storey Marriott Courtyard with 140 rooms and modern amenities. The hotel would be a minute’s drive from the entrance of the CJIA, and is expected to accommodate airline crews and staff, business personnel, diplomats, and other travellers.