Gardiner-led Group to
Elaborate plans are underway to uplift the ‘Grand Old Lady’
in the hills – the Queen’s Hotel in Kandy – is
to be uplifted and restored to its former prestigious position by
its new owners.
Ceylon Hotels Corporation Chief Executive Officer Chandra Mohotti
told a recent press conference in Kandy that Group Chairman Sanjiv
Gardiner – following in the footsteps of his late father,
Cyril in restoring virtual monuments – is committed to bring
back the pristine glory of the Queen's Hotel and that he has a heart
for the old building.
|The Queen’s Hotel, ‘Grand Old Lady’, is
to be uplifted and restored to its former prestigious position
in the country by its new owners.
He said when the Gardiner-led Group took over
Queen's it was in shambles and the staff was untrained for the job
of looking after and caring for guests and all in all it was a slow
process to rebuild Queen's.
“The Chairman is a Sri Lankan to the core and is keen to preserve
the Heritage of the city of Kandy by retaining the Kandy Hotels
in line with the needs of the town and its heritage concept,”
Mr Mohotti said.
He said the group is considering and branching out into catering
as well for local clientele. There would be a 3-tier system of clients
and even at other places in the Group they are opening up the dormitory
system for the low income groups without disturbing the facilities.
However the focus now is to restoring the Queen’s and attract
clients back to this once-revered hotel “instead of waiting
for them to return.”Kumar Thambyah, General Manager of Kandy
Hotel's said that if one looks at the visitor's book at the Queen’s
it was amazing that all foreign visitors were unanimous in the timber
of the hotel should be preserved for posterity.
He said that the ceiling of Hotel Suisse which has very valuable
imported timber has been sprayed with a paint giving it a gaudy
look. He said that he has now decided that the entire paint should
be removed and re-polished so that clients who come there could
see the difference.
Mr Thambyah also said that he was very sorry to say that most of
the timber doors have been removed by earlier administration and
these have been done in the night and only the door frames were
left. “Thank God for that,” he exclaimed. Some of the
timber has been replaced but some are still in good shape and sturdy.