- Construction begins on 4-Star, 200-Room Airport Hotel in Hambantota
By Faraz Shauketaly
The latest addition to the Greater Hambantota Development Plan starts its construction on Monday. The yet to be named, 4-Star, 200-Roomed Mattala Airport Hotel begins construction tomorrow and is expected to be completed by the end of 2012 – to coincide with the opening of the Mattala Airport.
The contract to build, own and operate the Airport Hotel has been awarded to Uva Leisure Resorts which had originally expressed interest in developing an integrated resort in the area. The project with an estimated cost of USD 20 Million is being funded entirely by the private sector with construction having been awarded to a local contractor with Malaysian interests. The Hotel is being built on an extent of ten acres of land on the perimeter of the airport approach road. The Development of the Mattala Airport project is being carried out under the stewardship of the then Minister of Aviation and Ports, Chamal Rajapaksa, currently the Speaker. The Speaker is billed to be the Chief Guest at tomorrow’s foundation laying ceremony.
The start of the construction indicates the progress that the Greater Hambantota Development Plan is making. Work is already underway on the Local Government Administrative Complex, the Conference Centre, extension of the railway link through to Kataragama as well as the development of the road infrastructure and the tourism industry. Projects that have already been completed include the Hambantota Port and the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium. Plans for an Oil Refinery fell though after the original developer failed to make a start in spite of the land being allocated to the company.