On Wednesday lawyers for a Qatari investment fund, Qatar Investment Authority, handed over a bank guarantee of two million euros for a proposed scheme to build a five-star hotel in Malaga’s port.
This sum represents two per cent of the value of the building, estimated at 100 million euros, and was accompanied by a formal request that the tender process for the works be permitted to begin.
This was a stipulation of the ‘Ley de Puertos’ to allow the land for the construction of the hotel to be handed over - an area of 18,000 square metres situated between the cruise ship docking zone and the marina of the Club Mediterráneo.
If all goes according to plan within the next nine months to a year, work on the hotel, which will be 135 metres high with 35 floors and 350 rooms, can begin.
There are a number of legal procedures to go through first. An announcement has to be published in the ‘Boletín Oficial del Estado’ (BOE or official state bulletin) of the Qatari group’s interest in the site. For the following month, other investors will be given the opportunity to also express an interest and formalise their offer. Should this be the case, an open bidding process for the concession of the land might have to be held.
Yesterday the mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre, signalled that as far as the city hall was concerned, the Qatari hotel project was going to be facilitated with all the “will in the world”.
The scheme requires a modification of the ‘Plan Especial del Puerto’ (special plan for the port) which the municipal government is apparently keen to approve in a completely separate manner to that which has been previously used to allow other commercial uses of the port.
In the same way, De la Torre has revealed that Malaga council has already been in talks with the Ministry of Works and Development so that whatever permissions are necessary from the central government are discussed and agreed in a cabinet meeting “as swiftly as possible”.
De la Torre emphasised that the scheme, one of the most costly in Malaga’s history, “is of great interest to the city.” The Port Authority, which has an uneasy relationship with the city hall - as seen in the long-drawn process over the development of Muelle Uno - has also shown its disposition to go forward with the Qatari hotel project.
Source: Sur in English