The largest luxury hotel in Palau is expected to rise in 2020 in Ngchemyangel Hamlet in Aimeliik State following the groundbreaking ceremony of the Wyndham Global Resort on Friday, July 27.
Wyndham Global Resort, which will offer 593 rooms that include 132 hotel guestrooms and over 400 villas, will surpass the accommodations capacity of existing big hotels in Palau namely the Palau Royal Resort which has 157 rooms, Palau Pacific Resort which has 165 rooms, and Palasia Hotel which offers 165 rooms and suites.
Amenities of the resort include two free-form pools surrounded by large sun deck and cabanas, a children’s pool, kid’s club and wellness center. It will also have a conference center with a ballroom that has a seating capacity of over 140 and four other meeting rooms – each has a 60 seating capacity.
Wyndham Hotels and Resorts, Inc. operates as a hotel franchisor worldwide and is among the top hotel company giants in the world. The Wyndham Global Resort in Aimeliik is being developed by the Sea Sky International Development Group which is a subsidiary of the Global International Development Group.
Wyndham Hotels and Resorts, Inc. Regional Director for Operations Michael Burchett, in an interview with the media during the groundbreaking ceremony, said that they intend to have the soft opening in 2020 and by that time, around 300 employment vacancies await the locals for the hotel operations alone.
“Wyndham together with the team at Global Development Group, we hope to play key role in helping to meet the demand of those visitor numbers and delighting them with memorable hotel service,” Burchett said.
When asked how they are doing with the marketing of the hotel especially in China, which tagged Palau as an illegal tourist destination since last year and whose citizens comprised the biggest chunk of tourists in Palau, Burchett shared that they have not yet done so much yet about marketing as they are still in the early phase of the hotel. Burchett added that they will start with the marketing 12 months before they are due to open the resort.
Burchett, however said in the latter part of the interview, that China is just one market.
“We are an international group so we’ll be marketing all over the world and hopefully we can bring lots of people to Palau,” Burchett said.
Chinese tourists still maintain the top list in the current tourist statistics shown by the Palau Visitors Authority (PVA) even as June statistics this year showed it had dropped down to 48% which is comprised of 3,907 Chinese tourists from 52% in the same month last year which is equivalent to 5,245.
Global International Development Group President Selina Zhong, in her speech spoken in the Chinese language during the groundbreaking ceremony, expressed through the aid of a translator that the resort will become Palau’s landmark in the future and it will build a bridge between China and Palau and develop economic relationship between the two countries.
Zhong also said that Chinese people are friendly and that “China is welcoming the politicians coming to China from Palau.”
The Sea Passion Group which operates the airline, Palau Pacific Airways had recently announced the closing down of its airline in August, citing that one of the main reasons for this decision is the decline of Chinese tourists coming to Palau due to China’s banning of tours to the country.
Among those who graced the event are Senate President Hokkons Baules, House Speaker Sabino Anastacio and Chinese Counsellor Li Cuiying from the Embassy of China in the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM). (Rhealyn C. Pojas)