This note has also appeared in ATP: All Things Pakistan
I just read this in the news. Daily Times has reported the inauguration of The Centaurus, Pakistan’s first seven-star hotel project, in Islamabad.
I am left wondering what are these people thinking? Can Pakistan afford, and sustain, a 7-star hotel? We can barely maintain a decent 2 or 3 star hotel in our major cities. Are we now competing with Dubai for architectural grandiosity? And whoever came up with the name should probably look for a job in Hollywood…
First 7-star hotel’s construction begins
September 01. 2006
ISLAMABAD: The Centaurus, Pakistan’s first seven-star hotel project, was inaugurated on Thursday. The $350 million complex is planned to have a 37-storey deluxe hotel, with two 21-storey residential towers, a 25-storey corporate office complex, and a 5-storey shopping mall. The complex will have a parking lot that would accommodate over 2,000 vehicles. The project will be completed in three years.
The Pak Gulf Construction Private Limited company (PGCL) and Messrs Atkins engineering company – the constructors of Dubai’s renowned Burj Al Arab – are executing the project. Saudi Arabian Al-Tamimi Group and the Sardar Group of Companies are making the investment.
PGCL Chief Executive Officer Sardar Tanveer Ilyas said that the structure complies with the building codes of the Capital Development Authority and can easily sustain an earthquake of 9.5 Richter scale. Ilyas appreciated Pakistan government’s policies, which he said, had encouraged him to make the investment. He said the project would provide employment to thousands.
President General Pervez Musharraf on Thursday said it was “the right time to invest in Pakistan” because of the country’s positive economic policies of de-regulation, liberalisation and privatisation coupled with a liberal foreign exchange regimen.
“We have opened all sectors of the economy for investment and the scourge of red-tapism and bureaucratic delays are being done away with,” said the president at the foundation-laying ceremony of The Centaurus.
Musharraf said that greater investment was also helping the country fight extremism and terrorism as both evils stemmed from poverty, illiteracy and the lack of economic opportunities. He said that all the government’s policies were in the best interests of the nation. “Whether it is relations with a country, diplomatic ties or our attitude towards investment, it is being done in Pakistan’s national interest.”
Interior Minister Aftab Ahmad Sherpao, President AJK Sardar Zulqarnain, Population and Welfare Minister Chaudhary Shahbaz Hussain and Chairman CDA Kamran Lashari attended the ceremony. APP