22 May 2009
Thiruvananthapuram, May 22: The Kochi-based Muthoot Pappachan group, that has interests in financial services, hospitality, infrastructure and wind power, is investing Rs.750 crore (Rs.7.5 billion/$159 million) in seven hotel properties in Kerala and Tamil Nadu, as well as more than 100 service apartments here.
"In Kerala, we will undertake four premium hotel projects near Kovalam, Alapuzha, Bekal in Kasargode district and Kochi," Group managing director John Muthoot told IANS.
"The Kochi property, a five-star business hotel, will be ready in the next few months. An agreement has been signed with the Taj group for managing this property," Muthoot said.
The new projects also include 122 service apartments near the international airport here - the state's first-ever such property - which will be ready by 2011, he said.
Another three properties will come up in Tamil Nadu - near Chittar dam bordering Kerala, at Sriperumbudur near Chennai, and on Old Mahabalipuram Road, the state's IT corridor.
"All three projects will be ready latest by 2011," Muthoot said, adding that discussions were in "advance stages with international hospitality brands" for managing the properties.
The group owns The Muthoot Plaza, a premium five-star business hotel in this Kerala capital, apart from running an in-flight catering service, The Muthoot Skychef. It also owns a property that is operated by the Taj group as the Taj Green Cove Resort at Kovalam.
These properties too are being expanded: 60 rooms will be added to the Taj Green Cove Resort, and 57 new rooms to The Muthoot Plaza. The in-flight service will also begin operations at other airports in south India.