1866Re: Winter Olympics in HImachal ?
- Nov 22, 2005boss 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,seem. Who knows?
> Winter Olympics in HImachal ?
> A wishful thought indeed, but if things are as bright as they
> I just laid my hands on this article and i just couldnt help butshare 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.
>bringing to Himachal Pradesh the kind of investment that could make
> Business India,
> Nov 7-20, 2005
> Ford on a Ski Romp.
> Alfred Ford, great grandson of the legendary Henry Ford, is
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 inthe 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 tobuild a hospital area in the area.
>infrastructure, like the ramshackle Kullu airport, which can only
> Feel of the himalays
> While the state government has promised to address the issue of
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, theinvestment 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 theproject. 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 hasthrown 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 activeinvestor 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,
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