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Shangri-La Debuts in Sri Lanka Breaking Ground on Two Properties

Work Begins on the 315-room Shangri-La's Hambantota Resort and Spa
and the 661-room Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo

HONG KONG, Feb. 27, 2012 -- Hong Kong-based Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts broke ground for a resort on 145 acres on the southern coast of Sri Lanka on 25 February 2012. Shangri-La's Hambantota Resort and Spa, Sri Lanka will complement Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo, which is currently under construction in the capital. The resort is due to open in 2014 and the two properties mark the entry of the hotel group into Sri Lanka, often referred to as "The Pearl of the Indian Ocean". The southern coast of Sri Lanka is renowned for its natural beauty and is rich in cultural heritage.

Shangri-La's Hambantota Resort and Spa, Sri Lanka
will be surrounded by an 18-hole golf course, coconut plantations and sand dunes to the south. Built along the shoreline, the resort will offer 315 rooms including 24 suites ranging in size from 50 square metres (538 square feet) to 250 square metres (2691 square feet). All rooms will offer balconies of the ocean breezes.

The resort grounds are a natural extension to the region's wildlife habitat. Yala and Bundala National Parks, Sri Lanka's foremost bird watching destinations, and over 40 heritage sites are within easy reach. To complement the local biodiversity, Shangri-La's Hambantota Resort and Spa will implement Sanctuary, Shangri-La's Care for Nature Project. The resort is currently consulting with local environmental organizations to determine a conservation programme for identified endangered species. An Eco Centre will be built on site, to teach and educate guests, colleagues and local schoolchildren about environmental awareness. In keeping with its natural setting the resort's hot water will be produced using solar energy.

CHI, The Spa at Shangri-La will feature ten treatment rooms, a beauty salon and health club. A dive center, a kids' club, a 30-metre lap pool plus additional freeform pool, two tennis court and retail facilities will offer recreational opportunities for business travellers and families alike.

Food and beverage outlets will include a lobby lounge, an all day dining restaurant, Asian specialty and North Indian restaurants as well as two pool bars and Golf clubhouse lounge. Multi-purpose function space at over 2,525 square meters and various pavilions offer versatile options for conferences, meetings, weddings and celebrations.

Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo will be located between the Galle Face green promenade and Beira Lake, with uninterrupted views of the Indian Ocean. The Hong Kong-based group announced the purchase of 10 acres of government land in January 2011 and is targeting to open the property in mid-2015.  The hotel will be easily accessible from Colombo International Airport in 45 minutes by car.

Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo will be built according to sustainability guidelines, with 661 rooms offering some of the largest accommodation in town at 45 square metres to 55 square metres (484 square feet to 592 square feet). This also includes 43 suites ranging in size from 90 square metres to 225 square metres (968 square feet to 2,421 square feet).

A wide range of restaurant concepts features a sushi bar, steakhouse, seafood market, Indian restaurant, Islamic restaurant as well as a sky lounge on the top floor. The all day dining venue will offer various food concepts throughout the day including Straits Spice Market, a Szechuan and a Macanese restaurant. A take-out deli, Irish pub, tea lounge and wine/cigar room will round out the culinary offer.

Meeting facilities will be among the largest in Colombo, with over 4,780 square metres (50,598 square feet) of function space spread over three floors to host meetings, receptions and private functions.

A health club, spa with eight treatment rooms, an outdoor junior Olympic-size lap pool at 25 by 12 metres and two outdoor tennis courts will complete the recreational facilities.

The Sri Lankan properties will be fully integrated into the local community from the very beginning, offering employment opportunities and infrastructural support. In addition, both properties will adopt Embrace, Shangri-La's Care for People Project, and will work with local children's organisations on health or education programmes over a long-term period in need areas such as school materials, infrastructure improvement, hygiene and nutrition. The hotel is in the process of identifying eligible schools within Colombo.

Shangri-La recognises the unique opportunity presented to hone a new generation of tourism talent in Sri Lanka. Both properties are committed to employing the majority of the workforce locally and they will commence a “Hospitality Traineeship Programme.” Young adults participating in the 15- to 18-month programme will start with basic skill courses in front office, food and beverage service, kitchen, landscaping and gardens. Successful candidates will then be placed in selected Shangri-La hotels globally until the properties in Sri Lanka are ready for pre-opening work.

“Sri Lanka is a country of unsurpassed natural beauty and rich in cultural heritage. Both Shangri-La hotels strategically fit into the group’s ongoing expansion plans to link the Indian subcontinent and our South East Asia developments,” said Greg Dogan, president and chief executive officer of Shangri-La International Hotel Management Ltd.

About Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts

Hong Kong-based Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts, one of the world's premier hotel companies, currently owns and/or manages 72 hotels under the Shangri-La, Kerry and Traders brands, with a room inventory of over 30,000. Over four decades the group has established its brand hallmark of 'hospitality from the heart.' The group has a substantial development pipeline with upcoming projects in Canada, mainland China, India, Malaysia, Mongolia, Philippines, Qatar, Russia, Sri Lanka, Turkey and United Kingdom. For more information and reservations, please contact a travel professional or access the website at www.shangri-la.com
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Contact: 

Maria Kuhn
Director of Corporate Communications
Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts
Tel: (852) 2599 3323
E-mail: maria.kuhn@shangri-la.com
Website: www.shangri-la.com

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