An artist’s impression of EkoCheras, a RM2.11 billion mixed development project on 12 acres of freehold land on Jalan Cheras, Kuala Lumpur.

EKOVEST Bhd, an infrastructure, property and construction group controlled by Tan Sri Lim Kang Hoo, is moving into the hotel scene to diversify its investments and income streams.

EkoCheras general manager Clement Lee said the group is planning to build hotels in Langkawi, Kuantan and Port Dickson.

“We are targeting tourism destinations and will build up from there to ensure that all our properties do well,” said Lee.

Ekovest is building its first hotel at EkoCheras, a RM2.11 billion mixed development project on a 4.82ha freehold land in Jalan Cheras, Kuala Lumpur.

The project comprises residential twin towers - the tallest in the area, officesuites, hotel suites and EkoCheras mall, with about one million square feet of retail space.

Ekovest inked a management agreement recently with Spain’s largest hotel chain, Melia Hotels International, which has officially apointed it as the operator of the hotel suite.

The hotel suite will be known as Innside Kuala Lumpur Cheras, and Melia Hotels will manage the property for 15 years.

The hotel will be Melia Hotels’ maiden Innside launch in Malaysia.

Established in 1956 in Palma de Mallorca, Melia Hotels operates over 370hotels in 43 countries and four continents under brands Melia, Gran Melia, ME by Melia, Paradisus, Innside by Melia, TRYP by Wyndham, Sol Hotels and Club Melia.

The hotelier began operations in 1990 with the opening of the four-star Melia Kuala Lumpur in Jalan Imbi, Bukit Bintang. Lee is bullish that Innside Kuala Lumpur Cheras will do well.

“Cheras lacks branded hotels that are operated by international hotel chains. We will be the first branded hotel in Cheras. We expect the hotel to move up the image of Cheras area, coupled with EkoCheras Mall,” he said.

The 13-storey hotel, with 238 rooms, is scheduled to start operation by late next year while the mall opened three months ago.

Ekovest executive chairman Tan Sri Lim Kang Hoo expected the partnership with Melia Hotels to boost traffic at EkoCheras.

“From day one, we have carefully shaped the development of EkoCheras to make sure that the project’s residential and commercial units are more than just ordinary real estate investments.

“The entire development of EkoCheras has many new experiences to offer, but what was missing is a hotel operator with international standards to serve guests with the best hospitality,” he said.

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