MALACCA: Best Western International (BWI), which is touted as the world's largest hotel chain with over 4,195 hotels in more than 100 countries, has made its mark in the historical city of Malacca with the official launch of the Best Western Wana Riverside Hotel.
Located next to the scenic Malacca River, in the heart of the Unesco World Heritage Site, the hotel offers up to 170 rooms, suitable for both business travellers and families with rooms ranging from superior, deluxe, grand deluxe, studio and executive.
Naresh Mohan, who is managing director of Trinidad Hospitality Sdn Bhd, BWI's area development office in Malaysia, said with the inclusion of the Best Western Wana Riverside Hotel, the chain now has five hotels in Malaysia.
"Besides Malacca, we have two Best Western hotels in Sabah and one in Perak, as well as a Best Western Premier in Kuala Lumpur.
"By 2015, we plan to expand the brand to 20 properties in Malaysia," he said.
Mohan said BWI offers three tiers of hotels: midscale Best Western, upscale Best Western Plus and its luxury Best Western Premier hotels to cater to various classes of travellers and their needs.
"In 2014, we expect to complete a Best Western Premier in Ayer Keroh, near the Malacca International Trade Centre.
"Not only will it have a five-star hotel, there will be offices and residences as well as a wide range of facilities," he said at the launch, here, on Thursday.
Also present were Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Ali Rustam and Wana Properties Sdn Bhd chairman Datuk Wan Mohd Najib Wan Mohamad.
Mohd Ali, in his speech during the launch ceremony, said he was impressed with what had been done with the hotel since it was taken over by the new management.
"The building was in disrepair after it had been abandoned by its previous management, but after it was bought over by Trinidad Hospitality and Wana Properties for RM37 million in 2010, I am glad to see that there have been many improvements made," he said.
Mohd Ali said while the hotel was operating smoothly, he was told that there was a problem with parking for its guests due to a lack of parking facilities in the area.
"The management has suggested to the state government that nearby non-historical, abandoned buildings be converted into multi-level parking lots, which we will take into consideration, as indeed, parking has become an issue which we must quickly address," he said.
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