Sokimex Petroleum Co plans to develop a $20 million luxury hotel and entertainment center on the Chroy Changvar peninsula—on a site once earmarked for a national conference center and exhibition hall, government and company officials confirmed.
The valuable riverfront property, situated opposite the Royal Palace, was cleared of about 90 families in 2001 to make way for the center and a planned pavilion for Cambodia to host the 2002 Asean Tourism Forum.
But the construction, which began under former municipal governor Chea Sophara and stalled with his removal in 2002, was never completed. The building has remained a concrete skeleton.
“The city has granted it to me with a plan… It could be an entertainment center,” Sokimex President Oknha Sok Kong said last week. He declined to give details.
Chhuon Sothy, director of the municipality’s Department of Urbanization and Land Management, confirmed that Sokimex’s proposal was submitted late last year and that city and company experts were still negotiating the details.
“I did not see any new plans. I saw only a letter from Sok Kong. The city wants to hand it over to Sok Kong for development,” Chhuon Sothy said.
A second municipal official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said some $20 million may be spent on the 17-hectare site. More details will be released in the next three months when a study of the plan is finished, officials said.
Mam Bunneang, municipal first deputy governor, said the municipality was happy a private firm was taking on a project that the city could not afford to complete. Though the future look of the peninsula remains a secret, it will not take away from the area’s natural beauty, Mam Bunneang said.