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Banyan Tree’s Vietnam project grows in size

Bigger-scale resort project estimated to cost less than US$900m

BANYAN Tree’s plans in Vietnam just got bigger, with the company confirming reports yesterday that investments at its massive resort project in central Thua Thien-Hue province will increase from an earlier reported US$270 million to just under US$900 million.

The first phase of construction for what will become an integrated resort project will begin with an Angsana Resort and a Banyan Tree Resort in the first half of next year and is expected to be completed by 2010. The whole project will eventually include seven four and five-star hotels; about 1,000 resort residences for sale; a championship 18-hole golf course; meetings, incentive travel, conventions and exhibitions (MICE) facilities and a retail and spa village featuring the group’s award-winning spas, said Banyan Tree Holdings group managing director Ariel Vera.

‘The initial estimated total project cost for all components of the integrated resort, including the resort residences for sale, is less than US$900 million,’ said Mr Vera. The increase in investment was due to the initial estimates factoring in only five hotels compared to seven now. The hotels were also of a smaller scale and the earlier plan did not include MICE facilities and the golf course. The number of resort residences for sale was also significantly less than the 1,000 being built under the new plans, a spokesman told BT.

Work on phase two of the Laguna Vietnam resort in the Chang May-Lang Co Economic Zone will begin in the second half and all three phases are expected to completed by early 2014.

The about 300 ha site located in Co Du, Danang, 30 minutes from Danang airport, has a three km stretch of beach backed by mountains, Mr Vera said.

He confirmed that funding for the project will come from various sources including bank debts, proceeds from property sales and equity to be injected from a new private equity fund to be set up and managed by Banyan Tree.

The project is not expected to have a material financial impact on the group’s earnings and net tangible assets for the year.

Banyan Tree will be handling the facilities management of the integrated resort development but will not be managing all the hotels and resorts in the property, said Mr Vera. He declined to name the other five participating hotels as the group is still in discussion with other international hotel chains.


Source: Business Times 12 Dec 07


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