26 July 2006

The Web
Business Today

Holiday Inn Lm23.3 million sale almost concluded

Matthew Vella

The prospective developer for the former Holiday Inn and Fort Cambridge area is George Muscat, one of the Bay Street Holdings shareholders, whose Lm23.3 million offer for the Fort Cambridge development brief has been confirmed with a letter of intent from the Ministry for Investments.
On 28 June, Muscat applied with MEPA for the demolition of the Crowne Plaza Hotel, and is now seeking permission for the construction of six apartment blocks containing 386 flats and a four-level underground car park.
His company Imperial Point was the highest bidder out of seven tenders received by the government for the purchase of Tigné Development Company, a subsidiary of Air Malta.
Imperial Point has an authorised share capital of Lm10,000, of which Lm2,000 are issued.
Muscat is a major entrepreneur whose company interests straddle a myriad of development companies, amongst them Bay Street Holdings, Legend Real Estate, and Tigné Estates, whose controlling interests are G Muscat Holdings and Tumas Group’s Easysell.
Muscat will also have to restore the Cambridge Battery and provide alternative employment for the former employees of the Holiday Inn.
“We have reached a very satisfactory agreement with the General Workers Union. To us it seems that everybody is satisfied,” Muscat told Business Today yesterday.
This newspaper is informed brokers are already at work searching for prospective investors to finance the Fort Cambridge development, through placements from private individuals and a public bond issue apart from bank loans.
Muscat said that following a letter of intent sent to him by the investments ministry, the two sides are currently discussing the formal handover of the land.
“It’s a process that normally takes time, but it is expected to be concluded within some months,” Muscat said.
In Tigné, the Fort Cambridge development brief foresees a 16-storey tower which is set to accompany high-rise development in the MIDI project, where the maximum height allowed is 22 floors.
The six other companies which submitted tenders for the purchase of Tigné Development Company Ltd were Fort Cambridge Company Ltd (Lm23 million); NYSIR Malta Ltd (Lm22.1 million); Hili Property Development Ltd (Lm13 million); Schembri & Sons Ltd (Lm12.8 million); Cambridge Construction Ltd (Lm11.5 million); and Cambridge Pace Ltd (Lm11.1 million).

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