The Jetwing Group is considering offering shares to the public in some of its hotels while setting up two luxury hotels and upgrading its properties in Negombo in a bid to position them in the luxury class, according to an official.
“We are planning to list some of our hotels in the medium term, because we are looking to expand now that tourism is taking off,” Hiran Cooray, CEO Jetwing told the Business Times.
He said the company has two big plans for Negombo. “We are rebranding Blue Oceanic and Seychelles to Jetwing Blue and Jetwing Sea, respectively,” he said.
Mr Cooray said Blue Oceanic will come under a $2 million upgrade while the Seychelles upgrade will cost $5 million. “We will bring in a large conference facility to Blue Oceanic and the idea is to bring these two hotels to the same standard as that of Jetwing Beach in Negombo,” he explained.
Mr. Cooray said Jetwing plans to start construction on the 10-acre land they own at Kuchcheveli in the East during the first quarter of 2010. “We will be building a luxury hotel and plan to operate it in end 2011,” he added. He said Jetwing has applied for another plot of land from the government to re-build Yala Village. “We have applied for a land at a nearby plot,” he said.
Mr. Cooray said that tourism will grow at a rate of 10% to 15% per annum next year. “More airlines such as Oman Air are coming in. SriLankan Airlines, Emirates and Qatar Airways are increasing their frequencies. The Scandinavian operators are starting to feature Sri Lanka now. With all this we should hit 525,000 tourists by 2010. It will go to 600,000 to 650,000 there onwards.”