Sri Lanka Crown casino project told to shift: report

Aug 05, 2013 (LBO) – A 350 million US dollar proposed casino resort has been told to shift or change its design so that a lake can be seen through the project, a media report said. The land was recently transferred to the project on a long-term lease but the report said had been first given to the Rank Holdings for a car park before Rajapaksa’s time.

Lake Leisure Holdings, a joint venture between Sri Lanka’s Rank Holdings of Ravi Wijeratne and James Packer’s Crown group is planning a 400 room hotel and casino on land leased from the state urban development agency.

Sri Lanka’s The Sunday Times newspaper said the project has been asked to shift by Urban Development Ministry Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, brother of President Mahinda Rajapaksa following the advice of a consultant brought by the World Bank.

“He showed me this land and said if you are building anything on it, it must be in the form of two towers so that you can see the Beira Lake through them,” the newspaper quoted Rajapaksa as saying.

“He said you must also especially be able to see the Lotus Tower which is now coming up.”

The Lotus Tower is a state-run project built with Chinese involve