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Old April 30th, 2011, 09:44 PM   #601
Amal
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Peace, informal sector to boost Sri Lanka '11 tourism 20 pct

By Shihar Aneez

COLOMBO | Thu Apr 28, 2011 9:13am EDT

(Reuters) - Tourist arrivals into Sri Lanka are expected to grow by 20 percent to a record of more than 780,000 this year, thanks to growing homestays and apartment rentals to accommodate a post-war influx of visitors after the end of a 25-year civil war.

The Indian Ocean island, once referred as one of the more dangerous tourist destinations due to occasional bomb blasts during its conflict with the separatist Tamil Tigers, has attracted more than 250,000 foreign visitors so far this year.

Arrivals have surged 34 percent in the first three months after the island, famous for beaches, attracted a record 654,476 tourists last year, boosting foreign exchange earned from the industry to a record $575.9 million.

"This is higher than the original projections," Nalaka Godahewa, the head of Sri Lanka Tourism Authority, told Reuters in an interview, referring to the first quarter arrivals.

Tourism is one of the main foreign exchange earners for Sri Lanka's $50 billion economy along with remittances from abroad, garments and tea.

"This year we estimate about 20 percent growth given that World Tourism Organisation projections for the Asia Pacific region would be around 11 percent," Godahewa said.

The 20 percent surge will see post-war Sri Lanka receiving a more-than-expected 785,372 tourists in 2011, he said.

Though existing bed capacity can cater for 900,000 tourists yearly, the Tourism Authority has acknowledged that it should be increased rapidly to attract high-spending tourists with a goal of 2.5 million tourists a year and $2.5 billion revenue by 2016.

MORE BEDS COMING

More than 2,500 hotel rooms are currently under construction, and 3,000 more are pending approval, Godahewa said. Sri Lanka has 22,735 hotel rooms and 1,500 rooms will undergo refurbishment this year.

The country has also attracted nearly $1 billion of foreign investment for a 500-room hotel by Hong Kong-listed hotel operator Shangri-La Asia Ltd (0069.HK) and a shopping mall.

"A hotel like Shangri-La will raise the benchmark in terms of quality of the product and the service delivery which will help further improving the image of the industry," Godahewa said.

But in the absence of new beds at hotels, other alternatives are springing up to cater for both tourists and expatriate Sri Lankans coming home to visit.

"An informal sector of tourist accommodation is growing which includes solutions such as homestay programmes, apartments and staying with friends and relatives," he said.

Godahewa forecast this year's revenue to be around $600 million, only a 4.2 percent gain year-on-year as the room rates garnered from the informal sector are less than standard ones.

Sri Lanka in 2011 has imposed $20 tax per room night on five-star hotels if they fail to charge a minimum rate of $125.

Despite ambitious plan, Godahewa said land acquisition for investment has been slower than expected, since most of the areas identified for development have not yet been released by the relevant government authorities.

The Ministry of Economic Development is primarily focusing on a few projects in the range of $200-500 million each. Sri Lanka aims to attract $2.7 billion into tourism investments.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...73R04S20110428
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Old May 1st, 2011, 05:04 AM   #602
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Sri Lanka hotel profit margins on the rise: report

May 01, 2011 (LBO) - Profit margins of Sri Lanka's tourist hotels are widening with an influx of arrivals and rising room rates after the end of its 30-year ethnic war, a report said.

Given the rather "anaemic" demand prior to 2009, when the war ended, most hotel operators had been compelled to compete on price, RAM Ratings (Lanka) said in a report on the island's hotel sector.
"Price undercutting had been evident among most city hotels and those in the southern region, with certain 05-star establishment only charging about 60 US dollars per night."

However, the government started imposing minimum room rates in 2009 to curb excessive price competition, and a third increase recently implemented raised minimum rates to 125 dollars from April.

"With tourist arrivals hitting a record high in 2010, occupancy levels have also surged, reducing the pressure to compete on price," RAM Ratings said.

"The upsurge in demand for hotel rooms has led to a concurrent rise in room rates across the industry."

Room rates had increased over 20 percent as at end-December 2010 from a year ago.

The rating agency quoted the Global Hotel Price Index as saying Sri Lanka’s 05-star room rates had risen 21.38 percent to an average of 105.63 dollars by end-December 2010 from the previous year.

"This represents the fifth-largest spike in room rates globally," RAM Ratings (Lanka) said.

"The scenario of escalating room rates is likely to prevail in the short to medium term as the industry will be challenged to expand its capacity to meet the surge in demand.

"The higher price tags will in turn boost hoteliers’ financial performance through broader profit margins."

Robust demand and inadequate supply of rooms over the short to medium term will continue supporting occupancy levels and room rates, the report said.

"Part of the latter will be regulation-driven as the minimum room rates imposed by the government will be increased," it said.

"We believe the scenario of high occupancy levels is likely to prevail in the short to medium term, as the industry faces a room-supply deficit amid more robust demand."

The current capacity of nearly 15,000 rooms is sufficient to cater to only some 800,000 guests a year – indicating a "substantial deficit" in supply should the government’s target of 2.5 million tourists be achieved, the report said.

Industry experts believe that the current capacity of graded rooms should be nearly doubled to around 28,000 rooms.

"According to plans already announced by local and foreign hotel operators, 1,000 rooms will be added over the medium term, albeit still insufficient to cater to the expected influx of tourists," the rating agency said.

"Furthermore, the closure of hotels for refurbishment could tighten supply further in the short term.

"Against this backdrop, we believe that hotels will continue enjoying high occupancy levels and lucrative rates in the short to medium term."

RAM Ratings also noted that despite the recent rate hikes, Sri Lankan hotel rates are still lower than those of the other countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

http://www.lankabusinessonline.com/f...nid=1451403937
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Old May 8th, 2011, 12:18 AM   #603
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Six Senses group plans IPO

Thai-based Six Senses & Spa hotels is planning a public float of shares (IPO) in the summer (June-August) in Colombo aimed at setting up its South Asian office to handle hotels and resorts in this region, according to its founder/CEO Sonu Shivdasani.


Sonu Shivdasani expressing a point. Pic by J. Weerasekera

The energetic Indian-origin entrepreneur, told the Business Times in an interview in Colombo that all the company’s current four properties in the Maldives, Sri Lanka and India would be brought under this holding company to be based in Colombo.

“Peace has dawned on Sri Lanka and there are exciting times ahead,” he said on Friday as he enthusiatically explained the organisation’s current properties and plans in Asia and other parts of the world while grabbing a quick breakfast on the roof-top lounge of the Cinnamon Grand.

Mr Shivdasani and his wife -Eva, who together set up their first property in the Maldives in 1995, spend five months on an island in the Maldives and the rest in Thailand where the company – which has over 26 resorts across Asia and the rest of the world- is based.

The company has spas at Aitken Spence Group hotels in Kandalama and the Tea Factory and is setting up – as a joint venture - another resort adjoining Heritance Ahungalla which will have 54 villas and in the adjoining Madu Ganga island, 15 tents. “We want to create a low impact (on the environment) resort at Madu Ganga and replicate this elsewhere as a low-carbon (living-with-nature) unit,” he said.

The company is also looking at a site in Galle and contemplating a health resort either in the central hills or the Niligiri mountain in South India. “Tourism will grow here because you have a tiny base,” he said.

http://www.sundaytimes.lk/110508/Bus...imes/bt06.html
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Old May 12th, 2011, 02:18 PM   #604
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Sri Lanka tourist arrivals up 67-pct in April

May 12, 2011 (LBO) - Tourist arrivals into Sri Lanka rose 66.7 percent to 63,835 in April 2011 from a year ago with sharp increases in visitors from south Asia and the traditional Western European markets.

Total arrivals were up 40.4 percent to 278,959 in the four months to April, data from the tourist promotion office showed.

The number of visitors from Western Europe, a key source of revenue to the island's resort hotels, rose 70 percent to 23,226.

The number of arrivals from Germany, long a big market for Sri Lanka, rose 94 percent to 4,114 while those from the United Kingdom, another traditional market, rose 33.5 percent to 9,038.

Arrivals from Scandinavian countries, although small, more than doubled.

Tourists from south Asia also grew strongly mainly driven by Indians whose numbers rose 90 percent to 14,705 in March 2011 from a year ago.

http://www.lankabusinessonline.com/f...?nid=674477328
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Old May 17th, 2011, 09:58 AM   #605
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Old May 26th, 2011, 06:22 AM   #606
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Tourism industry must position itself in Sri Lanka
Published : 12:00 am May 26, 2011 | No comments so far | Reputed marketing personality in the public and private sector Rohantha Athukorala, addressing the 2011 International Conference of the Institute for Hospitality Industry – UK in Sri Lanka, said that the industry must be commended for the strong and sharp strategies adopted to stay alive during the last 30 years.
However, he pointed out that it must now take the high ground and develop a distinctive position in Sri Lanka in relation to the rest of the other industries, so that it can elucidate priority attention in the new growth agenda of the country. His theme for the address was ‘Tourism Fit in the Changing Landscape of Sri Lanka’.


Athukorala, who is part of many sectors in developing cutting-edge business strategies, cited how the apparel industry worth around 3.5 billion dollars to Sri Lanka today was essentially termed a tailoring industry way back in the 1980s, but today it has transformed itself to be an innovator in the world stage with almost 80 per cent value addition and driving the proposition globally of ‘Garments without Guilt’ that has positioned the country as the ‘sustainable fashion capital of the world’. This has made brand Sri Lanka distinctive in the global stage of business, asserted Athukorala.
The speaker cited how he had firsthand experience of the impact of this proposition when Sri Lanka was the only country featured at the Global WWW Forum in New York last November when the icons of the industry gathered for 100 years of celebration of the WWW fashion industry.
The speaker then took the tea industry, which nets 1.4 billion dollars to Sri Lanka, and explained how the industry had become one under able leadership and was positioning itself as ‘Ceylon Tea, the First Ozone Friendly Tea’ globally and driving the proposition that Ceylon Tea is the highest quality tea in the world. The industry has already contributed almost 700 million for a global marketing campaign on this proposition, which will add value to brand Sri Lanka on the global stage, he commented.
Athukorala then focused on the tourism industry and pointed out that with a revenue turnover of 0.5 billion dollars plus directly to Sri Lanka and a gestation period of two to five years in the developing, a new property will find it hard to get priority attention unless it innovates and takes the high ground by positioning the industry in relation to the rest of the industries in Sri Lanka.
Reiterating that the efforts of the industry in the last two years had been outstanding, he noted that it must now do something for the country to add value to brand Sri Lanka, similar to what has been done by apparel and tea from a positioning platform.
One idea that was floated was to connect the Diaspora to the tourism industry by way of investments or networking to highlight the new brand names that will come into the industry, be it Gateway Hotel or Movenpick, etc.
“Another is to develop GI registration with propositions like Mt. Lavinia to be known for slow food and Sri Lanka Designer Festival. Or it can be to drive Arugam Bay for surfing globally just like the association of Galle with the Literary Festival. May be the Carbon Lung positioning with Sri Lanka is another idea worth pursuing given the climate issues faced globally,” said Athukorala.
The speaker acknowledged that the industry, which has lost almost US$ 7 billion in the 30-year war, was challenged with profitability issues as the construction of a hotel room ranges from 16-25 million, which curtails a stronger and aggressive development agenda and also stunts creative reconstructions.
However, he urged the industry to get together and see how it can be developed into a one billion dollar industry within two years whilst building a unique identity for itself in the business world of Sri Lanka. “It must move away from organic growth and drive for a new growth trajectory,” emphasised Athukorala.
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Old June 3rd, 2011, 10:57 AM   #607
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Six Senses Before Galle

FRIDAY, 03 JUNE 2011 11:56

Six Senses Resorts & Spas is to open Six Senses Before Galle and Six Senses Meeraladuaa in Sri Lanka to be built in partnership with Aitken Spence hotels. Six Senses Before Galle will be a resort of 54 villas, and Six Senses Meeraladuaa, positioned on an island nearby, will be an environmentally low impact site of semi tented structures. Both resorts will open in late 2012.

Six Senses Before Galle will have 54 villas; 24 one bedroom villas, 8 one bedroom duplex villas and 8 two bedroom duplex villas. There will also be 14 residential villas, available for sale.

The design of the resort has been inspired by the work of renowned Sri Lankan architect, Geoffrey Bawa, who established tropical modernism. The 14 private residences will be built along the beach.

Each will be airy and spacious, with two large bedrooms, a large area for living and relaxing, as well as a dining room and full kitchen facilities. There will be a study too, which can easily be converted into a third bedroom. Each private residence will have its own beach front infinity pool.

The Six Senses Spa Before Galle will have 12 treatment rooms, including two herbal Hammam rooms and a cave treatment room. The extensive gym will be equipped with Kinesis equipment, as well as a spacious yoga deck.

Located on the island of Meeraladuaa in the Madu Ganga wetlands of Sri Lanka, will be Six Senses Meeraladuaa, a 16 room tented camp. It has been specifically designed for guests to experience the extraordinary wild life of the area, taste the traditional Sri Lankan cuisine, benefit from the pristine calm of the nature reserve surrounding it and to enjoy the experience with the lowest possible effect on the environment.

Six Senses currently operates fourteen high-end resorts branded as Soneva, Six Senses and Evason in the Maldives, Thailand, Vietnam, Oman and Jordan. There are also several new developments underway in locations such as Morocco, Turks and Caicos and China. The group recently launched the Six Senses Sanctuary brand, of destination spas.

http://www.sundaytimes.lk/index.php/...-before-galle-
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Old June 10th, 2011, 02:43 PM   #608
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Sri Lanka tourist arrivals up 39-pct in May

June 10, 2011 (LBO) - Tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka rose 39 percent to 48,000 in May 2011 from a year earlier, led by increases in visitors from India and East Asia, data from the tourist promotion office showed.

Last year arrivals rose 46 percent after a 30-year war ended. In the five months to May arrivals are so far up 40.2 percent to 327,902 from a year earlier.

FULL STORY: http://www.lankabusinessonline.com/f...?nid=872620763
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Old June 11th, 2011, 11:01 AM   #609
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Indians top tourist arrivals in Sri Lanka

Colombo, June 11, (IANS):

Indians are at the top of tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka, official figures show.

Figures released by Sri Lanka's Tourism Authority showed that 68,830 Indians visited Sri Lanka between January and May this year, up 54.5 percent over the same period last year, Xinhua reports.

British tourists came second with their number growing 7.1 percent to 41,474 in the first five months of this year.

The number of Pakistani tourists jumped an astounding 98.1 percent to 6,027. It has been attributed mostly to Pakistani nationals visiting to watch cricket matches in the island nation.

Sri Lanka has seen an upsurge in tourist arrivals since the end to the armed conflict with the Tamil Tiger rebels.

Around 650,000 tourists arrived in the island country last year, and the figure is expected to increase by 100,000 this year.

http://www.deccanherald.com/content/...ivals-sri.html
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Old June 13th, 2011, 05:19 PM   #610
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Sri Lanka tourism: Of MICE and Patel points

By Rohan Samarajiva

June 13, 2011 (LBO) - I was asked to comment on a paper that looks at the potential of India as a source of tourists. Here are the key points. The key to changing behavior is empathy: putting oneself in the shoes of the other and looking at the world from that perspective.

This is something we in Sri Lanka have trouble doing.
A large number of Indians come to Sri Lanka now. India has been the largest source of tourists since the ceasefire. How can more be attracted?



Patel points

Indians with money to spend on tourism are not very different from Sri Lankans with money to spend on tourism.

It may appear that they want new experiences, but in actual fact, they want things to talk about with their friends upon return. "Do you know what we saw on the way to the Statue of Liberty?" "The Eiffel Tower is so fantastic when it’s lighted up." And so on.
The whole business is still very new, the exchange controls being relaxed only recently and the high growth rates only beginning to be felt even more recently. So photographs are important. Not just any photographs, but those of Patel points: those taken at locations that the viewer can instantly identify. The pyramids of Giza, Tiananmen Square, the Merlion in Singapore, London Bridge, the mermaid in Copenhagen. Without pictures taken against these backdrops, how could one tell (and be impressed), especially if one has yet to make the trip? Without the Patel points the desired effects will not be achieved.

Bangkok is the new, new thing in India these days. Bangkok has many Patel points. The Grand Palace. Wat Pho. The Chao Phraya river.

Does Colombo? Kandy? The only place that comes close for Indians is Bentota, pronounced with hard Ts. Not for the pictures, but for the name. For many Indians, a trip to Sri Lanka would not be complete without Bentota. Like we would not have really visited India, unless we took a Patel shot of ourselves with the Taj Mahal in the background.

So the way more middle-class Indians can be attracted to Sri Lanka is to create Patel points. How?

But this cannot be done in months. It’s a long term project.

Convention tourism

It’s odd that an industry so dependent on selling, uses a terrible acronym to describe convention tourism. MICE. Meetings, incentives, conventions, exhibitions. Comprehensive, yes. But attractive as an acronym? Definitely not.

The whole point in MICE tourism is that someone else makes the decision. In many cases, someone else pays part of the bill too: the company pays the airfare and the hotel bill for example. This is why MICE is good. When people are brought to a country and have part of their costs met, they are generally in a good mood. They will spend money.

MICE decision makers are few. They are easier to persuade.

Long before the Tourist Authority designated Negombo as the designated location for MICE, my organization brought meetings to Negombo. The meetings rooms were inadequate, but anything could be endured to avoid the grief caused by the road from the airport to Colombo.

The conventions we organized then led to Board meetings of South India based companies being organized here. Once familiarity was created, the economic advantages were seen. Colombo is closer to major South Indian cities than Delhi or Mumbai.

The conventions as well as the board meetings then led to some of the participants going off on additional tours to Kandy, Yala and elsewhere. Once the conventioneer is in the country, everything else is incremental.

So, this is the short-term solution. Give incentives for MICE tourism. Build familiarity.


FULL STORY: https://www.skyscrapercity.com/newrep...e=1&p=79429068

Last edited by Amal; June 13th, 2011 at 05:24 PM.
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Old June 16th, 2011, 12:51 PM   #611
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Removal of visa on arrival could be a dampener. Two families in the apartment where I live have recently been to Sri Lanka and they came back with great stories to tell. We were thinking of making a trip in Sep there, but with visa on arrival no longer being available now, shifted the destination to Goa, booked the flight tickets just last week.

I still want to visit Sri Lanka, but it will now require much more planning like many other countries. One of the reasons why so many Indians now travel to Thailand and Hongkong is indeed the relaxation of visa requirements for Indians to visit those countries, Thailand attracted a massive 750000 Indian tourists last year
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Old June 19th, 2011, 07:37 AM   #612
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Lighthouse Hotel in Rs.300m expansion

Listed Lighthouse Hotel, a unit of Sri Lanka’s Jetwing leisure group, is planning a 300 million rupee expansion and upgrade to target up market niche travellers.

Built in Galle in Sri Lanka’s south in 1996 the hotel says it conforms to standards conforming to Small Luxury Hotels of the World, an industry association.

“In order to maintain that high standard, your Board has decided to upgrade the existing hotel rooms together with the main public areas in order to further enhance the overall quality of the hotel,” Chairman Hiran Cooray told shareholders.

“It is our expectation that these developments will attract high-yield overseas niche markets.”

The firm will also build 12 rooms of premium category with plunge pools.
The expansion is expected to cost 300 million rupees.

Lighthouse will use its own funds and bridge the balance from bank borrowings.

By end March 2010, the hotel had 105 million rupees in Treasury bills and bank deposits. Cooray said the hotel had also signed a lease with ERA Beach Hotel in Thalpe for five years from December 2010.

The hotel’s revenues rose 39 percent to 421 million rupees in the year to March 2011 while profits rose 167 percent to 60.4 million rupees

http://www.thebottomline.lk/2011/06/19/page2.html
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Old June 19th, 2011, 08:36 AM   #613
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Three new luxury Villas Down South

[img]http://i53.************/2ryfv54.jpg[/img]
Ambassador's House - upstairs sundeck

By Sanath Weerasuriya

Three new villas have joined the luxury up end properties in the Sri lanka tourism industry. ‘Ambassador's House’, a colonial type five bedroom villa in Galle Fort, ‘Pooja Kanda’, again a five bedroom luxury villa in Koggala and ‘Ocean’s Edge,’ a four bedroom colonial type villa in Thillawatawana in Tangalle launched last week in a small ceremony in Colombo.

All three villas are managed and marketed by Marketing Villas Ltd, a Hong Kong based joint venture between the Elite Havens Group - Bali’s leading villa real estate, rental and management company and Singapore- based Private Homes & Villas Pte Ltd the leading regional independent villa consumer advocate. Launched in 2010, Marketing Villas Ltd leverages the unique strengths of both companies.

Since 1998, Elite Havens and its subsidiary BHM (Bali Homes Management) have developed distinctive and professional brand identities for over 50 villas, grown a network of travel agents that specialize in this unique niche of the travel industry, launched an array of villa and villa portal websites, and earned an extensive loyal guest following.

[img]http://i55.************/2djpjxg.jpg[/img]
Pooja Kanda - living room

Marketing Villas Ltd offers world class comprehensive marketing and distribution solutions to villa owners to ensure their personal villas can maximize their occupancies and rental yields.

Marketing Villas Ltd is unique in that it develops and promotes individual villa brands to help them stand out in what is a crowded and fragmented market place. We represent some of the best villas across the region from the award winning Istana on Bali’s trendy Bukit to the iconic Atas Ombak in Seminyak.

Marketing Villas extended its representation to Sri Lanka in 2011 and will expand into Thailand within the next 12 months. The rates for Villas ranges from US$ 350 to US$ 700.

http://www.sundaytimes.lk/110619/Mag...tvtimes_3.html

Last edited by Amal; June 19th, 2011 at 08:45 AM.
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Old June 25th, 2011, 06:53 AM   #614
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Sri Lanka says has secured $1.2 billion tourism investment

(Reuters) - Sri Lanka's tourism industry has secured $1.2 billion foreign investment this year due to a post-war tourism boom and has raised its investment target to $3 billion within the next five years, an official said on Friday.

The end of the 25-year war in May 2009 has boosted the $50 billion economy's leisure industry, making it one of the most attractive sectors for investment due to the island's nature and tropical climate that attract more high-end Western Europe tourists.

"So far this year we have got $1.2 billion finalized," said Nalaka Godahewa, the head of Sri Lanka Tourism Authority, told Reuters in the western coastal beach town of Negombo after the launch of a five-star hotel upgraded from three-star status.

The investment includes nearly $1 billion of foreign investment into a 500-room hotel by Shangri-La Hotels Lanka Ltd., a subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed hotel operator Shangri-La Asia Ltd, and a shopping mall by China National Aero Technology Import and Export Corporation, he said.

"We are expecting $3 billion in foreign direct investment for tourism for tourism in next five years," he said.

Sri Lanka had aimed to attract $2.7 billion in investments to upgrade its post-war tourism capacity in the medium term, with the goal of growing revenue to $2.5 billion by 2016.

Arrivals have risen every month, on a year-on-year basis, since May 2009 and the number of visitors in the first five months of 2011 jumped 40.2 percent to 327,902.

"We are well ahead of our targets," Godahewa said. "Already 1,500 hotel rooms are under refurbishment or being upgraded while another 1,000 new rooms have been built. Our target is 45,000 rooms from the current 22,700," he said.

Arrivals hit a record high of 654,476 in 2010 with a 46.1 percent year-on-year rise and broke the previous record of 566,202 set in 2004, when a peace accord between the government

and the separatist Tamil Tigers was in place.

Tourist arrivals into Sri Lanka are forecast to grow by 20 percent to a record of more than 780,000 this year.

Tourism revenue rose 54.7 percent in first four months of this year to $270.6 million compared to the corresponding period last year after jumping 64.8 percent year-on-year to a record $575.9 million in 2010, the central bank's latest data showed.

The booming tourism investments have boosted 2011 first quarter foreign direct investment (FDI) to a record $236 million, the state-run investment promotion arm said this month.
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Old June 26th, 2011, 11:31 AM   #615
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Sri Lanka's leisure group plans new resorts in East, centre

June 25, 2011 (LBO) - Sri Lanka's privately held Jetwing leisure group, is planning new project in the central and war-torn eastern areas of the island that will add 500 rooms over the next two years catering to a post-war boom, officials said.

"We are really excited about the East and we want to build in Trincomalee, Arugam Bay and Pasikudah," Jetwing chairman Hiran Cooray said.
"We think there is lot of potential in the East."

Tourist arrivals have increased by 46 percent last year and the five months up to May arrivals have increased 40 percent to 328,000 from a year earlier.

Pasikudah, a once popular resort destination before ethnic riots and the Tamil Tiger insurgency is making a gradual comeback with hoteliers aggressively constructing hotels along the bay.

In May 2011 Maalu Maalu Resorts and Spas opened a 40 chalet fishing village style resort in Pasikudah, the first resort hotel to complete construction in the small fishing hamlet since the end of the war in May 2009.

The Jetwing group is looking at building an managing a 750 million rupee 80 room resort in Pasikudah.

"We are looking at 50 rooms in the first phase and another 30 in the second," managing director of Jetwing Hotels, Ruwan Samarasinghe said.

"Construction will begin as soon as approval comes."

Jetwing upgraded a hotel in Negambo, near Sri Lanka's international airport in the Western coast Friday to 4-star standard Friday relaunching it as 'Jetwing Blue'. The firm said it spent 8 million US dollars to spruce up the 112 room property spread across nine acres.

The group has four properties in Negambo.

The company has already announced plans to build hotels in Colombo, Jaffna, Uppuveli and Nilaveli in Trincomalee, Kandy, Yala and Dambulla.

Jetwing says an 80 room four star hotel is on the cards for Dambulla, which will cost 800 million rupees to build.

The construction of the hotel will consolidate Jetwing’s presence in the island’s cultural triangle of Anudhapura, Polonnaruwa and Dambulla where the main tourist attraction is Sigiriya, an ancient rock fortress.

Construction of the hotel in Dambulla is set to begin over the next six month.

“We hope to add 500 hotel rooms to the industry within the next 24 months”, Jetwing’s Head of Sales and Marketing, Trevor Reckerman said.

Tourism authorities are expecting 750,000 arrivals this year and plan to attract 2.5 million tourists by 2016. Officials estimate that the industry needs 35,000 hotel rooms to cater to the demand up from the current 15,000.

http://www.lankabusinessonline.com/f...?nid=419205926
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Old July 12th, 2011, 05:49 AM   #616
mrpanini
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June Tourist Arrivals up 20%

July 11, Colombo: Sri Lanka's Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) has recorded a 19.9 percent increase in tourist arrivals to the country in June this year in comparison to the corresponding period last year.

Since the end of the war in May 2009, the number of tourist arrivals has steadily increased.

SLTDA statistics have recorded 53,636 tourist arrivals in June this year while the number of arrivals last June stood at 44,730.

According to the Authority's monthly statistics chart, during first five months of the year, the tourist arrivals from Western Europe dominated with 129,367 arrivals, an increase of 37.1 percent compared to the same period last year.

Tourist arrivals from South Asia followed with 93,139 arrivals, an increase of 50.9 percent from same period in 2010. Nearly 74 percent from South Asian travellers were from India.

The government predicts arrivals to grow by 20 percent and hit a new record of over 780,000 this year. Sri Lanka expects to raise the number of arrivals to 2.5 million by 2016.

http://www.colombopage.com/archive_1...10393864CH.php
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Old July 13th, 2011, 04:24 PM   #617
Shakeel
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Awesome

This is a great news from Hiran. His leadership is good and his team works really hard to get this done on time. Hope the grand plans of his ventures will be more open and can feel the natural instinct to make a stay for a day or two. I thoroughly enjoyed my stay at St Andrews. Hope the upgrades at this venture would create more interest.

Appreciate the details for the Colombo venture. We really need better boutique hotels in the city.

Thanks Hiran.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Amal View Post
Sri Lanka's leisure group plans new resorts in East, centre

June 25, 2011 (LBO) - Sri Lanka's privately held Jetwing leisure group, is planning new project in the central and war-torn eastern areas of the island that will add 500 rooms over the next two years catering to a post-war boom, officials said.

"We are really excited about the East and we want to build in Trincomalee, Arugam Bay and Pasikudah," Jetwing chairman Hiran Cooray said.
"We think there is lot of potential in the East."

Tourist arrivals have increased by 46 percent last year and the five months up to May arrivals have increased 40 percent to 328,000 from a year earlier.

Pasikudah, a once popular resort destination before ethnic riots and the Tamil Tiger insurgency is making a gradual comeback with hoteliers aggressively constructing hotels along the bay.

In May 2011 Maalu Maalu Resorts and Spas opened a 40 chalet fishing village style resort in Pasikudah, the first resort hotel to complete construction in the small fishing hamlet since the end of the war in May 2009.

The Jetwing group is looking at building an managing a 750 million rupee 80 room resort in Pasikudah.

"We are looking at 50 rooms in the first phase and another 30 in the second," managing director of Jetwing Hotels, Ruwan Samarasinghe said.

"Construction will begin as soon as approval comes."

Jetwing upgraded a hotel in Negambo, near Sri Lanka's international airport in the Western coast Friday to 4-star standard Friday relaunching it as 'Jetwing Blue'. The firm said it spent 8 million US dollars to spruce up the 112 room property spread across nine acres.

The group has four properties in Negambo.

The company has already announced plans to build hotels in Colombo, Jaffna, Uppuveli and Nilaveli in Trincomalee, Kandy, Yala and Dambulla.

Jetwing says an 80 room four star hotel is on the cards for Dambulla, which will cost 800 million rupees to build.

The construction of the hotel will consolidate Jetwing’s presence in the island’s cultural triangle of Anudhapura, Polonnaruwa and Dambulla where the main tourist attraction is Sigiriya, an ancient rock fortress.

Construction of the hotel in Dambulla is set to begin over the next six month.

“We hope to add 500 hotel rooms to the industry within the next 24 months”, Jetwing’s Head of Sales and Marketing, Trevor Reckerman said.

Tourism authorities are expecting 750,000 arrivals this year and plan to attract 2.5 million tourists by 2016. Officials estimate that the industry needs 35,000 hotel rooms to cater to the demand up from the current 15,000.

http://www.lankabusinessonline.com/f...?nid=419205926
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Old July 25th, 2011, 05:14 PM   #618
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Sri Lanka's tourism sector earns US$ 370 million this year

Mon, Jul 25, 2011, 07:29 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

July 25, Colombo: Sri Lanka's tourism industry has recorded over 50 percent growth in revenues in the first half of this year compared to last year, the Central Bank data showed.

The tourism industry has earned US$ 370.1 million in revenues in the first half of 2011, a 50.9 percent increase over last year, and become one of the fastest growing industries in the country.

State Tourism Promotion Bureau data reveal that tourist arrivals reached 381,538 in the first six months of this year, an increase of 36.9 percent from the 278,652 arrivals recorded during the same period last year.

The Central Bank data shows that revenue from the tourism sector had risen to Rs. 41 billion (US$ 370 million) from Rs. 27.9 billion (US$ 245 million) from the previous year.

The tourism industry witnessed immense growth following the end of the three-decade long civil war in May 2009.

http://www.colombopage.com/archive_1...11602348CH.php
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Old August 11th, 2011, 02:55 PM   #619
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Sri Lanka tourism still booming with arrivals up 32 pct in July

By Shihar Aneez

COLOMBO | Thu Aug 11, 2011 6:36am EDT

(Reuters) - Sri Lanka's tourist arrivals gained 32.3 percent in July from a year earlier to the highest level since December's record tally, as the island nation kept attracting more visitors and tourism-related investment since the end of a 25-year civil war.

Arrivals have risen every month on a year-on-year basis since the war's end in May 2009, and the government is targeting annual revenue of $2.5 billion by 2016 from visitors coming to see Sri Lanka's beaches, hills and religious and historic sites.

The government in July said it is expecting at least $1.5 billion in foreign investment into a proposed "tourist city" replete with hotels, shopping and a convention centre in Katana, a coastal town located 15 km north of the commercial capital, Colombo.

Sri Lanka has forecast a 20 percent growth in arrivals this year to more than 780,000 people, and President Mahinda Rajapaksa's government has facilitated $1.2 billion in tourism investment so far in 2011.

Visitors in July were 83,786, against 63,330 in July 2010, and the highest since the record 84,627 received in December.

Arrivals in the first seven months of 2011 have jumped 36.1 percent to 465,324, compared to the same period a year ago.

The 654,476 arrivals in 2010 smashed the previous all-time high 566,202 from 2004, when a peace accord was in place. Last's year's tally was 46.1 percent higher than the year before.

Tourism revenue rose 50.9 percent in first half of this year to $370.1 million compared to the corresponding period last year after jumping 64.8 percent year-on-year to a record $575.9 million in 2010, the central bank's latest data showed.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/...77A01D20110811
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Old August 11th, 2011, 08:47 PM   #620
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Nahil and Marriott strike deal; first 150-room resort worth $ 18 m in Weligama Bay area

Plans five more resorts including in Dambulla, Kandy and Nuwara Eliya

Business tycoon Nahil Wijesuriya has succeeded in striking a deal with world-famous Marriot, for the latter to advice and manage a 150-room star class beach resort on a three-acre land in the Weligama Bay area with an investment of US$ 18 million (over Rs. 1.9 billion).
East West Properties Plc’s newly-formed subsidiary Weligama Hotel Properties has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Marriot-linked special purpose vehicle for Sri Lankan operations Luxury Hotels International Management Company as well as an Interim Advisory Service Agreement with Marriot International Design and Construction Services Inc of USA for the groundbreaking venture.
The deal marks the first serious involvement by globally-renowned hospitality brand Marriott International, which has about 3,150 properties located in the US and 68 other countries and territories.
Nahil told the Daily FT that the tie-up with Marriot was a significant achievement for him as well as Sri Lanka tourism. At present the deal limits the use of the Marriot brand within a specific locality in the south coast, but based on the evolving strong relationship, a few more locations are being identified to set up additional resorts as well.
“Dambulla, Kandy and Nuwara Eliya are some of the prospective other locations that we are looking at,” said Nahil. He said that East West was working closely with Marriot’s technical team in India, where the brand is on an aggressive expansion. “The strategic tie-up will ensure the new resort will be effectively marketed globally as well as in the region,” he added.
The project is awaiting approval from Sri Lanka Tourism’s One Stop Shop Unit as well as the Urban Development Authority.
The breakthrough with Marriot as well as the $ 18 million investment is the first major Greenfield project Nahil is taking up in the leisure sector, whilst he is well-renowned for strategic acquisitions and divesting subsequently at a profit. The previous leisure venture in which he invested and then exited was Ceylon Continental via Hotel Services Plc.
“Given the end of the war boost, leisure is a good business to be in and I see huge potential in tourism,” Nahil added.
Architects from Thailand are already working on the project, whilst the resort also has quick access to the soon-to-be-opened Southern Expressway.
He said that the new resort project was fully self-funded whilst East West Properties, which is owned 85% by Nahil and connected parties, recently had a successful Rights Issue of Rs. 1 billion.
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