Dijaya signs on Starwood to develop W Kuala Lumpur hotel on former Bok House site

KUALA LUMPUR: Dijaya Corporation Bhd has signed on Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide to develop the W Kuala Lumpur hotel on the former Bok House site on Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur.

W Hotels is a contemporary, design-led lifestyle hotel brand and has 41 hotels worldwide.

“Tourist numbers are increasing in Malaysia so we see it as a natural progression to enter the hospitality business,” said Dijaya Corp managing director Datuk Tong Kien Onn at the signing ceremony on Wednesday April 6.

In addition to the W Hotel, 350 units of serviced apartments will be built atop the hotel. The launch of the serviced apartments will be in 2012, said Tong.

The current plot ratio for the 1.2-acre freehold plot is 11 but the developer is applying to raise it to 12. Under the present plot ratio, the hotel is expected to take 10-storeys while the apartments will be 27 storeys. The gross development value for the residences is about RM650 million.

The indicative price per unit is between RM1,600 and RM1,800 for units sized between 700 sq ft to 1,600 sq ft. “Construction is scheduled to begin end 2011 with completion in 2016. The development cost for both hotel and residences is about RM750 million with the hotel portion taking up RM300 million,” Tong revealed.

The proposed design of the W Kuala Lumpur building is by New York-based Skidmore, Owings & Merrill.

The hotel will feature 150 rooms and suites. It will also have 12,917 sq ft of meeting space, with one ballroom and five meeting and function rooms. A traffic consultant will be hired to look at traffic concerns in the area.

“W Kuala Lumpur will be an exciting addition to the brand’s growing international footprint in the world’s most exciting cities and emerging destination,” said Chuck Abbott, regional vice president Southeast Asia, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Asia Pacific.

W Hotels have six hotels in Asia with six more being developed. It recently opened W Hotels in Taipei, Bali and Koh Samui.

“Dijaya is proud to collaborate with Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, a company with a long history of designing, building and managing world-class hotels and resorts. We have chosen a partner that is in line with our aim to grow with a dynamic presence,” said Datuk Rohana Mahmood, Dijaya independent non-executive chairman.

Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Ng Yen Yen who witnessed the signing said Malaysia needs another 40,000 rooms by 2020 to add to the current 161,117 rooms. The ministry has set a target of attracting 36 million tourists in 2020 with an annual revenue of RM168 billion. In 2010, 24.7 million tourists visited Malaysia earning the country a total of RM56 billion.


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