SANParks looking for partner to build Kruger hotel
By Bongekile Mhlanga
Malalane - Partners are being sought to develop the first-ever hotel for the Kruger National Park.
The hotel, which was initially set to be built inside the park's boundaries, will now be built near Malalane.
South African National Parks (SANParks) wants to enter into a public private partnership to build the hotel.
“SANParks is looking to generate money for itself, to alleviate poverty through job creation for the communities around the Malalane entrance gate, develop the community, and promote tourism, biodiversity protection and conservation,” said SANParks spokesperson Ronald Thakhuli.
The hotel was to be situated at the confluence of the Matjulu and Crocodile rivers, near the entrance gate.
“There has been opposition to building the hotel inside the park and we are still conducting research to find a suitable location for it,” added Mr Thakhuli.
He said a hotel in Malalane burnt down in 2008, prompting SANParks to look into building its own hotel in the area.
"The winning bidder will be granted commercial use rights, enabling it to design, finance, build, operate and maintain the tourism attraction for a likely period to provide a fair return on their investment," said Mr Thakhuli.
He said the bid winner will also be responsible for conducting an environmental impact assessment.
"The partner will also have to meet development, operational and broad-based black economic empowerment (BEE) obligations, as well as pay SANParks a PPP fee," said Mr Thakhuli.
Interested parties are required to submit detailed bids that contain specific financial, functional and BEE proposals.
The submissions should be handed in at SANParks offices at 643 Leyds Street, Muckleneuk, Pretoria, by no later than Friday, 28 August.
More information is available from the SANparks website, http://www.sanparks.org, or from Annemi van Jaarsveld on (012) 426-5027.