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SP Setia ties up with Shangri-La Down Under

Property developer SP Setia Bhd has officially announced Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts as the hotel operator for its proposed twin-tower development in Melbourne’s central business district (CBD).
This is the first time a Malaysian property developer has partnered with a leading hotel brand name for a development project that has a construction value of about A$480mil in Australia. The cost of building the hotel is A$280mil.
SP Setia president and CEO Datuk Khor Chap Jen said with Shangri-La as its partner, it would definitely spur Melbourne’s tourism industry and create job opportunities both during and after the construction period.
“The spinoff is tremendous in the sense that Shangri-La is known for its chain of hotels in China.
“The project will provide job opportunities to 1,000 people during the construction period, and upon completion of the hotel, it will provide about 1,000 ongoing job opportunities,” Khor told reporters on the sidelines of an event to exchange documents with Shangri-La Asia Ltd CEO Lim Beng Chee to mark the strategic partnership between both parties.
The event was witnessed by SP Setia’s board of directors and former Housing and Local Government Minister and the Prime Minister’s special envoy to China Tan Sri Ong Ka Ting.
He said the project would be launched soon now that SP Setia has obtained the planning permit. The group will be calling for tenders some time in August.
Last month, Australia’s Herald Sun reported that the Hong Kong-based chain had confirmed it would occupy the 64-storey tower overlooking Carlton Gardens.
The tabloid said a deal had been done with SP Setia for Shangri-La to take 500 hotel rooms. SP Setia had bought the site for A$101mil.
Khor said the group was delighted to partner with a leading brand name for one of its latest developments in Melbourne, one of the most livable cities globally.
“We came to Melbourne seven years ago and did mention before that we are in for the long haul.
“It has been part of our plan to anchor one of our developments with a hotel and the first name that came to our mind was Shangri-La,” Khor noted, adding that the construction of both towers is expected to take place simultaneously.
The five-star Shangri-La Hotel will occupy the first tower and feature 500 guest rooms, while the second block will consist of 300 luxury residential apartments and offices.
The gross development value for the residences is worth A$480mil, while the hotel portion will be ascertained later, said Khor.
Meanwhile, Lim said this was a good partnership where both brands were concerned.
“This development will be an addition to our portfolio of hotels.
“With SP Setia’s experience in Melbourne, we can be assured of a good partnership to undertake the hotel development and bring value to it.
“We are known for providing guests with different experiences not only with Shangri-La’s branding and ideal locations,” Lim said.
On why the hotel chain chose Melbourne, Lim said it was a huge market that it had to have a presence in, and it would definitely boost its portfolio of hotels for guests to choose from.
“This is one of the few rare ones where Shangri-La has tied up with a developer even before the planning approval,” Lim said.
Located at 308 Exhibition Street, the Cox and Fender Katsalidis-designed two-tower development will be overlooking Melbourne’s World Heritage-listed Carlton Gardens. Slated for completion in 2022, the hotel will feature a state-of-the-art ballroom that can fit 1,000 guests, a sky lobby, restaurants, a spa, a fitness centre and a pool, among other facilities.

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