With the bright prospects for a boom in the tourist industry, Browns Investments PLC has decided to venture into the leisure sector in a big way. The required approvals have been obtained and construction of a 150 room star class hotel will commence shortly. It is planned to increase the number of rooms to 172 with requisite approvals.
The site selected at Kosgoda on the Colombo Galle road for the hotel is surrounded on three sides by water. All rooms will have a sea view thereby providing a luxurious setting for the occupants. The average room size will be 35sq meters. The agreement with Board of Investment of Sri Lanka was signed on 5th April 2012.
A reputed architectural firm in Thailand has been commissioned to design the hotel which will be built in an eco-friendly environment. The hotel is adjacent to a turtle hatchery and the guests will have a unique experience in watching the turtles moving around on the beach, from their rooms.
The hotel will be equipped with all modern facilities including two restaurants, the main one which can accommodate 250 persons and a specialty restaurant. The accent will be on outdoor facilities with an outdoor lounge bar, an outdoor food outlet, and a pool bar.
The hotel will be fully owned by Browns Investments PLC, but it is intended that management will be given over to a well experienced, globally recognized operator. Discussions are underway with international hotel chains regarding the management of the hotel.
The project, estimated to cost around Rs 1.75 billion, is scheduled to be completed in two years.
Browns Investments PLC has ventured into a number of sectors during its short period of existence. The sectors include Hotels & Leisure, Plantations, Agri business, Construction, Manufacturing & Exports, and Entertainment.
According to a spokesman of Browns Investments, they were not hesitant in venturing out and making investments during the war years. After the war, the Company has aggressively ventured into a number of areas through investments and joint ventures. Some of these initiatives are investments in LOLC Leisure, the Sierra Group, Samudra beach Hotel, Excel Holdings, Free Lanka Capital Holdings and Agstar Fertilizers Ltd.
In its joint venture with LOLC Leisure, Browns Investments holds a 30% stake. The hotels in the joint venture include Riverina, Palm Garden Hotel, Eden, Tropical Villas & Dickwella Village Resort. These properties comprise 620 + rooms in the Southern Province. Currently, most of these properties are going through a major refurbishment drive with the objective of making them more attractive to the tourists. The leisure sector is a key segment in the investment portfolio of Browns Investments. According to P R Saldin, CEO, Browns I nve s t m e n t s, with Browns Investments’ stake in LOLC Leisure and the construction of the hotel at Kosgoda, Browns Investment will strengthen it’s foot print in this sector.