Cape Town - Tsogo Sun [JSE:TSH] announced on Tuesday that it is investing a total of R680m in building a new 500-bedroom hotel complex in the heart of Cape Town's central business district.
The hotel group has reached an agreement with the owners of the site where the Tulip Hotel was recently demolished on the corner of Buitengracht and Strand Street.
“We believe the continued development and rejuvenation of Cape Town’s city centre will lead to growing demand for hotel accommodation," said Tsogo Sun CEO Marcel von Aulock.
Tsogo Sun already operates three full service hotels in Cape Town's CBD, namely The Cullinan, Southern Sun Waterfront and Southern Sun Cape Sun – as well as the recently refurbished SunSquare Cape Town in Gardens.
Von Aulock believes the addition of a new product aimed at the limited service market will allow Tsogo Sun to provide the full spectrum of products to suit all budgets for both business and leisure travellers.
The new hotel will consist of two products in one complex, a 200-bedroom latest-design SunSquare hotel and a 300-bedroom new generation StayEasy hotel, offering a choice of affordable accommodation.
Included in the complex will be banqueting and conference facilities, Tsogo Sun’s casual dining offering Vigour & Verve, retail space and approximately 300 underground parking bays.
Construction is expected to begin in May 2015 and to be completed by September 2017, in time for the peak summer tourist season.
Wesgro - the official tourism, trade and investment promotion agency for Cape Town and the Western Cape - welcomes Tsogo Sun's investment in the new hotel.
“Our city is re-inventing itself. This R650m investment is a huge confidence booster for the central city and for tourism investment in the region," said Wesgro CEO Tim Harris.
"In addition, because the two hotels are targeting the 2 to 3 star ‘value tourism’ market, they will help to meet some of the excess demand for rooms in this price range and broaden the hotel product offering in the city.”
Harris added that tourism in the Cape is positioned for growth and Wesgro calls on all investors in the tourism sector to contact the agency to discuss business expansion and "greenfield" investments in the city and across the province.
Western Cape Minister of Economic Opportunities Alan Winde said Tsogo Sun’s continued investment in the Western Cape speaks to the confidence it has in the province as a business destination.
He pointed out that the Cape Town International Convention Centre’s expansion meant there would be an increase in demand for accommodation in the city centre.
“The expansion of the CTICC is set to double the centre’s existing exhibition capacity. We will see an increase in the number and size of conferences, resulting in more business travellers to our region. Developments, such as the Tsogo Sun’s new hotel, will cater to the Western Cape’s projected increase in business tourism,” said Winde.
The tourism sector has been identified as a major focus area for the province for the next five years. The Western Cape government, in partnership with the private sector, are participating in design labs to plot the growth strategy for the sector.
“Tourism is our fastest growing sector, employing over 204 000 people in formal jobs and generating R17bn for our local economy," said Winde.
"Over the next five years, under a high growth scenario, this sector has the potential to add a further 100 000 formal jobs. To reach these targets we have to stay competitive so we can continue to increase tourist numbers.”
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