The renovation works of Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel are almost complete and it expects to resume full-fledged operations within two months, said officials.
“Despite delays, we are now happy with the progress in renovation works,” Salman Kabir, assistant director of marketing and public relations, told The Daily Star yesterday.
Kabir said customers' feedback on the renovated rooms is also good.
Renovation works of government-owned Sonargaon hotel, the oldest five-star hotel in the country, began in 2005. Work was delayed for several years due to a change in the political scene in January 2007, according to officials.
Accom Engineering Ltd, a sister concern of Orion Group, is carrying out the renovation at a cost of Tk 180 crore.
Prior to January 2007, the contractor completed work on the 3rd and 4th floors, swimming pool and gymnasium. Renovation of the 5th to 8th floors remained stalled till May 2016.
The 7th floor was handed over to the hotel on February 1 and the 8th floor will be given on Sunday. “Refurbishing works on the 5th and 6th floors are going on and we hope to get the floors finished by next month,” said Kabir.
MA Awal, director of sales and marketing of Sonargaon, said this is the first time the hotel has been renovated since its establishment in 1981 and it will resume full services soon.
“We were forced to stop renovation by the then government in 2007 and it was a huge loss for us,” said Salman Karim, managing director of Orion Group. Karim said they had imported many materials but those got damaged and are deemed not fit for use now. So, they had to import those all over again, he added.
“We have used many materials imported from Singapore and Indonesia to ensure superior quality,” he said.
Pan Pacific Sonargaon hotel is fully owned by the government and managed by the Pan Pacific hotel chain. The hotel has a total of 277 rooms, with an average occupancy rate of 80 percent, which goes up to over 90 percent in the peak season between September and January, according to Kabir.
“We needed the renovation works to remain viable because of growing competition.”
Sonargaon's main competitors include Radisson Water Garden Hotel, The Westin, Le Meridien, Lakeshore and Regency.