Developers spend millions in buildings to accommodate visitors
SIX hotel groups in South Africa are racing against time to complete an additional 3000 rooms to accommodate visitors for the 2010 World Cup.
Towering concrete and steel structures being built by the Rezidor Hotel Group, City Lodge Hotels, Southern Sun and Protea Hotels are taking shape in several cities — from Sandton in northern Johannesburg to Cape Town’s central business district.
The hotel groups have signed up with Match Event Services, the company selected by Fifa to provide ticketing and accommodation for the tournament.
City Lodge Hotels, which has 43 hotels with 4864 rooms, currently has 10 hotels either under construction or undergoing renovations.
Chief executive Clifford Ross said: “Of these 10 hotel projects, eight are expected to be open for June 2010 … and we should have a total of 6054 rooms available.”
The Rezidor Hotel Group, which owns three hotels in Cape Town and Johannesburg with 500 rooms, plans to have 1300 rooms available to meet the World Cup rush.
Spokesman Renu Snehi said the company’s hotel in Sandton was already fully booked for the World Cup.
Protea Hotels, which has already contracted about 4000 rooms to Match Event Services, has nine hotels under construction.
Protea Hotels director of revenue Danny Bryer said the 2010 World Cup would benefit the hospitality sector and South Africa.
The Federated Hospitality Association said the growing number of hotels being built was another major boost for the construction industry. A single hotel room can cost a developer between R750 000 and R1.5- million to build.
Southern Sun is poised to add four new hotels to its portfolio.
The new hotels — Southern Sun Montecasino and Southern Sun Hyde Park in Johannesburg, one in Witbank, Mpumalanga, and another in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal, will alleviate concerns about a possible shortage of accommodation between June 11 and July 11 next year.
The estimated R176-million development in Hyde Park will offer about 132 rooms.
Queensgate Holdings, a Cape- based company, is preparing to expand to other parts of South Africa, including Johannesburg.
CEO Andrew Hubbard said Queensgate was spending about R150-million redeveloping a building in Commissioner Street in the Johannesburg CBD into a four-star conference hotel with 230 rooms.
Queensgate is developing a 150- room hotel in Morningside, Johannesburg, in addition to a R150-million four-star conference hotel in Cape Town’s Upper East Side, near Groote Schuur.
The development will include a restaurant, 10 conference rooms and 250 residential flats.
Other hotels gearing for the flood of foreign soccer supporters include The Don Suites Hotel Group which has contracted 80percent of its 410 suites in Johannesburg, Pretoria and Cape Town to Match Event Services.
According to a statement from the One&Only Group, it also owns a hotel in Mauritius, where Match Event Services has sourced about 3200 rooms, and is in the process of finalising negotiations for its 53 suites.
Source: The Times
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