Church ventures into hotel business
BIBLICAL accounts of the birth of Jesus Christ speak of the lack of accommodation in the Palestinian town of Bethlehem, forcing Mary and Joseph into a barn. The rest is history. Today Fiji’s Methodist Church – one of the largest in the region with around 212,000 members – is exploring the possibility of investment in business, primarily a hotel.
Developed by Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group, the $FJD110million Park Inn by Radisson will include a hotel, apartments and shopping complex on the corner of Stewart and Saint Fort streets in Suva. It will be the second Radisson property in Fiji, the first being a beachfront property on the holiday island of Denarau.
Carlson Rezidor has signed a management contract with the iTaukei Trust Fund which already owns shares in Radisson Blu and Union Plaza – a shopping mall in Suva’s Central Business District. The Methodist Church will provide land it owns for construction of the hotel and shopping complex which was initially expected to open for business in the first quarter of 2018.
The land to be developed is 16,000 square metres of prime freehold of which 8000 will be dedicated to the hotel and the remainder towards parking, shops, restaurants and office space.
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