UAE's Lulu Group completes Grand Hyatt hotel in India's Kerala
HE Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, the UAE's Minister of Tolerance, attended the inauguration ceremony of the convention centre and hotel project in Kochi
Lulu Group's Grand Hyatt hotel and convention centre in the Indian state of Kerala (pictured) has been inaugurated.
HE Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, the UAE's Minister of Tolerance, attended the inauguration ceremony of the project, developed by the UAE-based retail giant.
The Grand Hyatt facility is the third to be developed in Kerala's Kochi city.
Officials present at the inauguration ceremony included Sheikh Khalid bin Abdulla Al-Khalifa, Bahrain's Deputy Prime Minister, and Yusuffali MA, chairman of Lulu Group.
Commenting on the development, the Minister of Tolerance said: "My presence in this event is another sign of the growing strength of the friendship between the two countries.
"Our international interaction here will reinforce notably historic actions of the past  months, that is, the two visits by the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi to the UAE and the visit by HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, to India as Chief Guest at the Indian Republic Day celebration," he added, according to WAM.
Kerala is one of the states where notable developments have been launched by stakeholders from the UAE and India.
The second edition of Abu Dhabi Week, an event aimed at promoting tourism to the UAE capital, was held in Kochi this February.
Commenting on the event and its expected performance, Mubarak Al Nuaimi, director of promotions and overseas offices at Abu Dhabi's Department of Culture and Tourism, said that India was "a crucial market" for the capital city.
"Owing to the growing levels of disposable income in the hands of Indian travellers, we believe that India is a crucial market, with a potential to expand the tourism inflow in Abu Dhabi," Al Nuaimi continued.
Lulu Group is also continuing its investments in south India, the region that Kerala forms part of.
In March, Lulu Group announced the launch of a $462.8m (AED1.7bn) mixed-use project in Andhra Pradesh, another south Indian state.
The retailer, headquartered in Abu Dhabi, will develop the project through a public-private partnership (PPP) agreement.
A 7,000-capacity convention centre, a shopping mall, and a luxury hotel will be developed in Andhra Pradesh's Vishakapatnam city.
Lulu Group's chief said his team had concluded "many rounds of fruitful discussions with the government of Andhra Pradesh", and commended the speed with which the project had been approved.
Yusuff Ali MA, chairman and managing director of Lulu Group, said the project would provide "a world-class shopping experience to both tourists and residents" of Andhra Pradesh.
According to a report by Arabian Business, he added: "We hope to complete this prestigious project by 2021.
"We are fully committed to completing [the project] within 36 months."