Signed consortium agreement for Oé-Cusse to have the first 5 Star Hotel in Timor-Leste
May 20, Day of Restoration of Independence, was the date chosen by Dr. Mari Alkatiri, President of the Authority of RAEOA-ZEESM TL, to sign the partnership between the Region and Sutera Sanctuary Lodges (SSL), represented by the local company Oé-Cusse Sanctuary Lodges (OSL), in the hall of Hotel Ambeno.
“We are going to have a five-star hotel, to welcome the people who arrive at our five-star international airport and want to visit our six-star bridge,” the President of the Authority explained, without hiding his satisfaction at the achievement of yet another quality equipment for the region. “This is a project for Oé-Cusse’s success and for the success of Timor-Leste,” he added.
The consortium contract aims to create a local company, owned by Oé-Cusse Sanctuary Lodges and by RAEOA, in order to upgrade the hotel to a 5-star equipment, with an increase in the number of beds, presidential suite, gymnasium, and other valences and structures. The management, for 50 years, will ensure an international standard (Malaysian Standard for Five Star Hotels) – as the award-winning Sutera Sanctuary Lodges, Poring Hot Springs, Kinabalu Pak, Manukan Island Resort and Laban Rata – and caution in the long term the recovery of all RAEOA’s investment in the hotel, based on an assessment of the financial viability of the investment and the business plan by an external entity.
“The process has exceeded all our expectations,” said Datuk Dr. Edward Ong, chairman of SSL, referring to the development process for the Pelican Paradise project in Tasi Tolu, Dili. “After eleven years of trying to start an operation in Dili, we have managed to reach this moment in Oé-Cusse in just seven months, and we have built a relationship based on mutual trust and respect, which will allow us to overcome all the challenges,” he added.
According to the Secretary of Community Tourism, Inácia Teixeira, this partnership for the development and promotion of tourism in the Region will “introduce Oé-Cusse to the world as a tourist destination, attracting a wider public, nationally and internationally, with a high quality and a potential that goes from leisure, nature and culture tourism to market niches such as MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions) and business, also extending the area of our territory that is promoted, including in the dimensions of religious, nautical and adventure tourism, to places like Oesilo, Nitibe and Passabe”, she said. “No less important for this moment of Oé-Cusse’s development is the strength and credibility of the brand that is represented by the region’s partner company in this venture, and which we believe will mobilize other investors, in different areas, from Agriculture to Banking, from Transports to Telecommunications”, she added. “The ultimate goal of this partnership and its associated tourism development is, as in all the Authority’s initiatives, to create opportunity and employment for our young people and raise the quality of life of the Atoni people and the Timorese people in general, the Secretary concluded.