Sri Lanka seeks international hotel chain to manage heritage property

Nov 02, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s state-owned Bank of Ceylon is seeking an international hotel chain to manage its subsidiary, Grand Oriental Hotel (GOH), a landmark built during British times overlooking Colombo port. Sri Lanka is experiencing a tourism boom with a sharp upturn in visitors following the end of its 30-year ethnic war in May 2009. The bank has called for expressions of interest from investment and management companies to invest in and manage the affairs of the hotel which has a capacity of 200 rooms.

The investor should be able to develop and manage the hotel under an international brand name with applications closing on November 20, according to an advertisement by Bank of Ceylon.

GOH is a heritage hotel built in 1837 during British colonial rule of the island and located in the heart of the capital city facing the harbour. It has a large banquet hall and large car park.

Bank of Ceylon said it wanted investors with past experience in managing international hotels preferably heritage hotels.

“Having maintained its architectural values for more than 150 years, GOH now requires an overall repair,” it said.

“The interested parties should agree to invest to bring back the hotel t