BY BEN BILUA
CONSTRUCTION of Zaru Hotel at Gizo is progressing well and are taking shape following its ground breaking ceremony held in September last year.
The hotel will be a spectacular figure in Gizo and at the same time boost Western Province’s tourism industry.
In an interview with Island Sun yesterday, Jacob Kwan, the owner of Zaru Hotel said he is proud and at the same time faced with lots of challenges.
He said the project has drained him financially but with determination, he is pushing forward to complete the hotel in time.
“I’m struggling with freight of materials and other expenses have bombarded me financially,” Kwan said.
“While I acknowledge the government for its support towards small businesses in the country, I would be very pleased if the government provides some kind of leeway for us small business who are putting efforts to support the country’s economy through our services,” he added.
“We are also supporting the effort to improve our economy and I kindly ask the national government and other institutions for cooperation and support each other.”
Speaking to Island Sun last year, he said the hotel will accommodate 32 self-contain rooms, a restaurant, a VIP bar, a Sports Wear Shop, a jetty designed for elderly tourists to offload baggage and drop off upon arrival as well as departure.
He adds that the hotel will be the first environment friendly building ever built at Gizo as it will be powered by Solar.
“In terms of tourism services, we are making sure all the facilities are user friendly and also safe for all age groups.
“Our visitors will be our utmost priority as far as safety is concerned,” Kwan said.
He said the timeline for the completion of the hotel is two and half years depending on weather and availability of resources so as building materials.
Kwan said TOOR Building Construction Company is leading the construction of the building and most of the construction workers are youths from rural communities.
According to Kwan, the fund is from his own pocket and another portion comes from his business partner.
“This is a huge project and I want the province or the national government to recognise how we as small business owners trying to establish infrastructures that one way or the other help achieve the government’s objectives in terms of tourism facilities.
“I for one applied for the Stimulus Package to assist me with this project, but my application was rejected.
“It is saddening that to see people receiving the Stimulus Package doing less or nothing at all,” he said.
“I’m using my own investment to make my dream come true,” he said.
“It is Kwan’s best interest to provide an efficient, well-organized and user friendly services. But most of, his vision is to promote healthy environment where both tourists and locals can enjoy while doing their business.
“Our environment best describe our lifestyles. Keeping our environment clean while taking responsibility to clean our surroundings is the best way to start.
“The best investment you’ve ever make is your own health.
“While we promote tourism, we must be responsible to keep our town clean. We must make a stop to our traditional attitude of throwing rubbish from mouth to anywhere on the ground,”
“We must also establish network within our communities to clean the town.
“I must say that the first impression of tourists visiting our town depends on how clean we live and this reinforces the need for us to promote cleanliness in Gizo,” Kwan added.