Maldives to develop four new resorts in Male atoll lagoon
A local developer has launched a project to develop four luxury resorts in the Maldives prime tourist zone of Male atoll.
In a statement, Good Catch Pvt Ltd said it had in May acquired lease rights to the Maavaru lagoon in North Male Atoll for an undisclosed sum. The lagoon is over three kilometres big, providing enough space for four separate resorts, it added.
Good Catch has contracted Maldives Transport and Contracting Company (MTCC) to reclaim land for the first phase of development. Under the first phase, two eight-hectare islands are to be reclaimed and available for investors to inspect in about two months.
“The islands are designed for 5 to 7 star resort hotel developments,” the company said.
MTTC CEO Ibrahim Ziyath told local news website Sun Online that the reclamation project would begin soon. Cutter suction dredgers would be used for the project, he said.
Good Catch, which was established in 2012, describes itself as a developer of world class tourism destinations that contribute to the long-term development of the Maldives tourism industry. Services offered by the company include development and management of properties and destination as well as end-to-end property related services, including project development, and portfolio and asset management.
Over the past five years, dozens of uninhabited islands have been leased to local and foreign resort developers. Several international brands have entered into the market, increasing the number of resorts to 120. That number is set to increase as the government has announced the opening of some 24 new resorts over the next two years.
Along with the new resort openings come the challenge of increasing demand from budget travellers who choose guesthouses over luxury resorts that the Maldives is known for. The guesthouse sector has rapidly expanded with over 450 guesthouses in operation today.
The government has recently announced new steps to maintain a structured growth in tourism, including a slowdown in leasing islands for resort development and increased marketing efforts in key markets such as China and the Middle East in order to reach an ambitious target of a record 1.5 million tourist arrivals this year.
According to the latest figures, tourist arrivals to the Maldives for the first five months of the year increased by 10.6 percent to reach 632,729 compared to the 572,318 in the same period of last year.