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1866Re: Winter Olympics in HImachal ?

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  • viplav
    Nov 22, 2005
      boss if that happens u know HP will figure in world map more brighter
      that it is now

      --- In Shimlahangout@..., Tenzin <tenzin_iitb@y...>
      > Hi all,
      > Winter Olympics in HImachal ?
      > A wishful thought indeed, but if things are as bright as they
      seem. Who knows?
      > I just laid my hands on this article and i just couldnt help but
      share it. Since this wasn`t available online. I typed it from the
      magazine. I am so glad that things are shaping up fast. This would
      indeed be a milestone in Himachal emerging as the forerunner in eco-
      tourism and offering quality health services. I just hope that this
      project go through unscatched with common understanding and
      political wills from all political parties.
      > regards,
      > Tenzin
      > Business India,
      > Nov 7-20, 2005
      > Ford on a Ski Romp.
      > Alfred Ford, great grandson of the legendary Henry Ford, is
      bringing to Himachal Pradesh the kind of investment that could make
      this small mountainous state a hub of eco tourism and a must try
      destination for any avid skier. In the last week of October, Ford
      flew to shimla to present the project report of his Himachal Ski
      Village (HSV) to stat chief minister Virbhadra Singh. With a MoU and
      a go ahead from the state cabinet now in his bad, Ford hopes to have
      the technical clearances by the end of the year and targeting a 2009
      > HSV has been conceptualized as a world-class ski-facility in
      the Dhauladhar ranges of the Himalayas, above the Kullu-Manali area
      that Indian tourists throng in summer. The chosen site is already
      popular with the international heli-skiing set. It has the finest of
      the skiing slopes and snow that will satisfy both beginners and
      international skiers. The first phase of the project involves an
      investment of $135 million. This means construction of 250 hotel
      rooms, including separate villas, installation of ski facilities and
      setting up of the ropeway gondolas that will bring the tourists to
      the ski village. The concept design of the 50-acre village borrows
      from the traditional Himalayan style architecture and has been done
      by Jack Zehren & Associates from Vail in Colorado. There will be
      handicrafts market, called Kullu Haat, which will offer local
      villagers and craftsmen employment opportunities. A theatre complex
      will host Indian and international music concerts and
      > other performing arts. Talks are also on with Apollo group to
      build a hospital area in the area.
      > Feel of the himalays
      > While the state government has promised to address the issue of
      infrastructure, like the ramshackle Kullu airport, which can only
      take 25 seater aircraft, Ford doesn't not want to foist a five star,
      glitzy ambience on the area. "The people who visit should get a feel
      of the Himalayas as they are," he says.
      > According to HSV`s financial officer Glen Trotman, the
      investment commitment of $135 million could grow into $500 million in
      the later phases. "We want to see what the market is like before
      going into other phases", he points out. Ford is aiming at tourists
      from India as well as the high spending segment from Europe, the Us
      and Australia, to keep the cash reister ticking. Indeed, Ford and
      his childhood friend, John Sims, who is managing director,
      repeatedly stress on their commitment to India, which has already
      found expression in an industrial project as well as a Vedic
      planetarium in West Bengal. A prominent Indian that HSV has on its
      board of directors is banker Nasser Munjee.
      > The HP government on the face of it, appears fired by the
      project. To begin with, there will be royalty and lease payments to
      the state government and the village communities. The state will
      also benefit from the 10 percent luxury tax that the project will
      garner from its clients. It will also get additional revenue from
      the sale of power. On its own, HSV will provide direct employment to
      1000 persons and indirect employment to another 3000 persons. Asked
      for a ballpark figure, trotman told Business India that the
      financial windfall accruing to HP could be anything up to 2 percent
      of the total cost of the project. In any case the luxury tax and the
      royalty paid to the state will be more than double the current
      annual tourism revenues (stagnant at 40 crore). Ford, on his part,
      talks of a "ripple effect" the project will have in the area on the
      hospitality and tertiary sectors.
      > There is another attractive proposition that the project has
      thrown up. Once it gets going, India will have another major tourism
      and winter sport infrastructure. It may get a chance to bid to the
      winter Olympics. And Himachal Pradesh, always short on investment,
      will be showcased worldwide as an up market, safe and eco-friendly
      > Ford, a director of the Ford Motor Company and an active
      investor in the equities market, property development and software
      ventures, is aware of the risks involved in the project,
      particularly after the recent earthquake that cut such a destructive
      swathe across the Himalayas. But, as he puts it, "nothing ventured,
      nothing gained".
      > ---------------------------------
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