Digicel Samoa yesterday broke ground for its $35 million Phase One of the Lava Hotel project at Sogi.
The project represents Digicel Samoa’s second investment in the Tourism and Hospitality industry in Samoa.
Present at the groundbreaking ceremony were Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi, Government M.Ps, Reverend Utufua Naseri, business and community leaders, Digicel management including Regional Hub C.E.O. Colin Stone.
Lava Hotel Limited Chairman, Fia’ailetoa Pepe Christian Fruean, says the project not only boosts Samoa’s economy, but also creates employment for the local people.
“There will be 50 jobs created during the construction phase with reputable contractor, Ca’Bella Pacific Construction Samoa Limited and more than 80 permanent hospitality jobs will be created to run the hotel,” Pepe said.
“It is expected that the Lava project will turn over an excess of T$9 million per annum in foreign exchange.”
Fia’ailetoa says phase one of the Lava Hotel project is expected to finish by mid-2019, in time for the Pacific Games, with further development phases to follow.
Phase one of the hotel development comprises 52 first class hotel rooms, an upscale bar and restaurant, pool facilities, a dedicated function room catering for about 120 people and an impressive boardroom for business meetings.
The bedrooms will be built over three levels and are accessed through an external corridor overlooking a 20-metre external swimming pool within a private courtyard.
Fia’ailetoa adds the development is an important contributing factor to the success of the planned Apia Waterfront Development Project.
He also commended the work and support of the Samoa Government, especially Tuilaepa for championing the bold initiative by Digicel Samoa.
“The vision to promote tourism through investments in first class hotels commenced 14 years ago with the passing into law of the Tourism and Hotel Development Incentive Act 2003.
“Since entering Samoa in 2006, Digicel has always looked to provide services and get involved in projects which are of benefit to the country and to communities,” Fia’ailetoa said.
The new hotel will be managed locally with an experienced management team under the direction of an International Asset Management Company using a Digicel-owned new brand called Lava Hotel Apia.