KUALA TERENGGANU: Pantai Pandak, the beach in Cendering here where the epic Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa was filmed, is set to be the location of a five-star resort.
The RM300mil project, which will consist of 210 hotel rooms, 20 condominiums and nine pavilion-type rooms, will carry the Swiss brand of hotels Movenpick Hotels and Resorts.
Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Said said the project will be a boost to the state’s growing tourism industry.
“The addition of a five-star luxury resort will also create additional employment and business opportunities for the local community, enhance Terengganu’s economic growth and make us the rising star of the nation.
“I am proud that Terengganu has been selected for the development of a Movenpick resort.
This marks a milestone for the state as we push further to position ourselves as a major player in the global tourism arena,” said Ahmad at the ground-breaking ceremony here yesterday.
The ceremony was officiated by Terengganu’s Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin.
Also present were former Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who is also the adviser to the East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC), Qatar ambassador Essa Mohamed Al-Mannai and Qatari Diar Asia Pacific Ltd chief executive officer Khaled Mohamed Al-Sayyed.
The project is undertaken by a joint venture between Malaysian investment company Success Circle Sdn Bhd and Qatar-owned Qatari Diar Asia Pacific Ltd.
The resort’s architecture will incorporate traditional Terengganu Malay house and modern contemporary designs, said Success Circle group managing director Datuk Awalan Abdul Aziz.
He added that phase two of the project was a low-density exclusive residential project called Ville de Regalia, where 24 units of villas equipped with private swimming pools would be developed.
The project is expected to be completed in December next year, and operations are expected to begin in early 2016.
The Pantai Pandak beach faces the South China Sea and is located in Kampung Cendering, about 6km from Kuala Terengganu.
The beach is known by filmgoers as the location of a battle scene in the 2011 epic Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa, which was produced by KRU Studios and starred Stephen Rahman-Hughes.