Max Myanmar Hotels has sold two beach resorts toAmazing Hotels & Resorts – one on land that was confiscated from villagers by the Tatmadaw ostensibly for the development of a military compound.
The subsidiary of conglomerate Max Myanmar Holding sold its hotels on Chaungtha beach in Ayeyarwady Region and Ngapali beach in Rakhine State earlier this month.
The beaches are among Myanmar’s most popular seaside resorts.
“We should call it a share transfer rather than a sale, because Amazing will continue to run the hotels,” said U Aung Myo Zaw, director of Max Myanmar Hotels.
Max Group had not finished building the Ngapali hotel, he said, adding, “Amazing will continue to develop the property as it sees fit.”
He made clear that Max has no plans to sell any of its other properties. “We have transferred these two and we are now running three hotels.”
These are Hotel Max and Lake Garden Hotel in Nay Pyi Taw, and Novotel Yangon Max in Yangon.
Lake Garden and Novotel Yangon Max are managed by French hotel chain Accor.
Max also has plans to develop more hotels in the future, said U Aung Myo Zaw, though he did not comment on whether these would also be managed by Accor.
The beach property in Ngapali was the subject of a debate in parliament earlier this year, as it sits on land that was taken by the Tatmadaw in 1996, supposedly for the expansion of a compound occupied by the No 55 Infantry Regiment.
The military compound was not built, however, and from 2007 the land was leased for hotel construction, to Min Zar Ni Company, Eden Group – which has since partnered with US hotel chain Hilton – Fortune, Max Myanmar and Amazing.
Last year, the same hotel came under fire, as Rakhine State Chief Minister U Hla Maung Tin ordered an investigation into allegations Max Myanmar was one of a number of companies that had taken sand illegally from the beach to build a “wave-resistant wall” near to the property, as reported by The Myanmar Times.
In a letter to local hotel companies on December 26, U Htay Win, deputy general manager of the Thandwe branch of state-run Myanma Hotels and Tourism Services, said Max had been cleared of the allegations based on “photos submitted by a responsible person for Rakhine State”.
He did not elaborate on this and the case has reportedly since been dropped.
Source: Myanmar Times