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Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Two restaurants to make way for Harrods Hotel

KUALA LUMPUR: Two popular dining joints in the popular Bukit Bintang shopping zone here, will be making way for Asia's first Harrods Hotel and Residence.

The RM2 billion project will be located on the site of Chulan Square Restaurant in Jalan Raja Chulan and Restoran Seri Melayu in Jalan Conlay.

The Harrods Group portfolio is owned by Qatar Holding LLC, a unit of the Qatar Investment Authority.

In Malaysia, Tradewinds Corp Bhd (TCB) owns the franchise for the Harrods brand of products.

Qatar Holding vice-chairman Dr Hussain Ali Al-Abdulla said its objective was to open hotels in London, Sardinia in Italy and Kuala Lumpur.

"We have done the due diligence and will execute the projects. We are building Harrods hotels, Harrods apartments and retail units. The project here will cost RM2 billion."

Dr Hussain said the opening of the Harrods Hotel in London would be at around the same time as the one here, making it possible for Kuala Lumpur to host the world's first Harrods Hotel.

The Harrods Hotel here could be ready as early as 2016 if construction starts next year as planned.

The luxury hotel will boast of between 250 and 300 rooms and a residential component as well as retail.

Dr Hussain said the residential component would be sold at a higher price than that of the Pavilion Banyan Tree and Banyan Tree Residences, which is understood to be going for about RM2,000 per sq ft.

Dr Hussain said this at the signing ceremony yesterday between Qatar Holding and the sole developer of the property, Jerantas Sdn Bhd.

Both Qatar Holding and Jerantas will plough in an equal amount into the project.

Meanwhile, Ooi Ah Heong, the adviser for the development, said the hotel cum residences would be built on a 2.22ha site, which was bought for RM1,800 per sq ft, or roughly RM430 million.

Restoran Seri Melayu, which is owned by Amcorp Group Bhd, sits on land leased from Lembaga Kraftangan Malaysia.

Lembaga Kraftangan comes under the Information, Communications and Culture Ministry and acts as the custodian for the Federal Lands Commissioner.

It is understood that the land was tendered for sale by the government last year.

Ooi said the tenants had yet to be notified to vacate the land.

The land is now owned by Jerantas, which is a 34:66 joint venture between PS Trading Sdn Bhd (a wholly-owned unit of Tradewinds Corp Bhd) and Gagasan Simfoni Sdn Bhd.

Qatar Holding has an interest in Jerantas via Gagasan Simfoni.

Ooi, who is also a director of Pavilion Reit Management Sdn Bhd, said the opening of Raffles Hotels & Resorts within Pavilion Mall, here, was no longer possible.

By Business Times

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