Mega hotels will not stifle local businesses – Go-Invest CEO
-construction of 10 hotels to start in January
By Bibi Khatoon
The Guyana Office for Investment (Go-Invest) has met with close to 35 local and foreign hoteliers who will be building mega-hotels in the coming months, but Chief Executive Officer of Go-Invest, Peter Ramsaroop has brushed aside concerns that they will stifle the local hotel industry.
During an interview with the News Room on Friday, Ramsaroop noted that different facilities will cater to different guests and as it is, Guyana does not have many options.
He pointed to one instance where the US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo visited Guyana and could not stay at the Marriott Hotel since the rooms were booked out.
“Those that are looking for a luxury hotel, that want to pay the higher cost since you have other amenities, then you will pay that…the smaller hotels do very well because again, it’s a different price range and a different clientele, so I don’t see the local market stifling at all,” Ramsaroop explained.
“Guyana is in need of luxury, mid-level type hotels across the city,” he added.
He also noted that several of the interested parties are from the local business sector, including King’s Jewellery World, Herdmanston Lodge and Palm Court.
“The hotels coming [on stream] are not just foreign direct investment, many are local providers that have done extremely well in Guyana. We even have Herdmanston Lodge, which has been around for a while, expanding; we have some vendors putting in smaller hotels –Best Western hotels –that are at a different level,” the CEO said.
It is not just about the hotel rooms, but jobs will be created in the taxi service, laundromats, agriculture and other sectors, said Ramsaroop.
As such, he urged that Guyanese gear up to contribute to the tourism and other industries which are rapidly expanding.
The government recently signed agreements with ‘658 Guyana Holdings’ for the construction of a 289-room $90M Hilton-branded hotel at McDoom, East Bank Demerara (EBD).
Agreements were also signed for the construction of a Delta Hotel Marriott near the Cheddi Jagan International Airport, an H-Towers luxury hotel in New Providence, on the East Bank, and a SureStay Plus Hotel by Best Western in central Georgetown.
Ramsaroop revealed that 10 of the mega-hotels, which have already acquired lands from private persons, will commence in January 2021.
King’s Jewellery has acquired the former Water Chris building located at Waterloo and Quamina Streets, Georgetown for its second luxury hotel.
The hotels came from an Expression of Interest put out in August by the Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce following calls for some 20,000 rooms to cater to the booming oil and gas industry.
It is expected that over the next three years, there will be many hotels which will fill this demand.