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Larnaca development starting to take shape

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Larnaca will see its fair share of new developments with several luxury high-rise building projects, hotels and a shopping mall being built by local and foreign investors.

Once lagging behind other towns in Cyprus construction activity, Larnaca is catching up with redeveloping the marina, its first shopping mall, while building luxury apartments and hotels.

Larnaca will see at least two new hotels being fully operational by the beginning of the summer while some residential and other projects are in the pipeline with construction expected to begin in the coming years, according to Mayor Andreas Vyras.

He said a Russian investor is waiting for the green light to go ahead with constructing a hotel in the Phinikoudes area, replacing the building which now houses Hobos Café.

Vyras said that currently the investor is waiting for permission from municipal authorities and will then apply for building permits with the town planning department.

Initially, the investor was going to build a high rise but switched to investing in a much-needed hotel.

Meanwhile, another housing project is underway just down the road with the construction of two 11-floor buildings containing 26 luxury apartments called the Naoc complex is ready to begin.

Owners of the project named it Naoc from the Greek word meaning “ancient temple”.

The project is inspired by ancient Greek mythology and consists of two buildings, Apollo and Poseidon.

Naoc offers its residents all the services of a luxury hotel but with the privacy, security, and allure of a private home.

This includes 24-hour security, a concierge service, and property management tasked to handle all matters of maintenance so that residents don’t have to.

All 26 residences feature a bi-spoke architectural design, are ultra-spacious, and equipped with state-of-the-art technology and have a sea view.

Vyras told the Financial Mirror, a small boutique hotel in one of Larnaca’s historic areas, near St Lazarus church, is about to open its doors.

InterContinental Hotels Group, one of the largest hotel chains in the world, is about to open the small boutique hotel called Indigo.

The boutique hotel will operate under an international agreement between IHG, Sunnyseeker Hotels, hotel management company and Quality Group, a major land and investment developer in Cyprus.

Another boutique hotel, the Nicolaides Boutique Hotel is under construction with the developers and owners, the Nicolaides Group, planning to open it in July.

The hotel will consist of 40 rooms and it is located in the centre of Larnaca.

Indigo will offer many amenities to its guests but also residents of the area. It also includes a roof garden swimming pool, restaurant, roof-top bar, cafeteria and many more entertainment facilities.

Larnaca’s first shopping mall, the Metropolis, should be operational much earlier than expected.

The company undertaking the construction of the Metropolis Mall on behalf of South African owners Acsion said the aim is for construction to be completed before the end of 2020, so then it can open to the public in early 2021.

The €60 mln mall is being built on land belonging to the Cyprus Church, located behind Larnaca’s military training camp (KEN) and opposite the parking lot of the new GSZ Stadium.

South Africa-based Acsion Group, founded by Cypriot Kyriakos Anastasiades, obtained construction permits for a 39,000 sqm shopping centre.

Larnaca Municipality is moving ahead with renovating the town’s commercial core, which is expected to be affected by the mall’s operation and other new projects.

Vyras had told the Financial Mirror that works in the area will cost the municipality €2 mln.

Centre of Excellence

An international, scientific and business Centre of Excellence for Marine and Maritime Research, Innovation, and Technological Development is to be created in Larnaca.

The Cyprus Marine & Maritime Institute was set up by MaRITeC-X the consortium, spearheaded by Larnaca municipality that includes local universities, as well as international maritime institutions.

Recently the board of directors appointed Zacharias Siokouros as the first Chief Executive Officer.

The project received €15 mln in co-financing for being selected for funding by the European Commission’s Horizon2020 research and innovation program while being funded with another €15 mln from the Cyprus government.

The project is expected to give a boost to the quiet town of Larnaca, which is currently lingering in the shadow of the island’s commercial development, by creating hundreds of jobs for scientists.

Half of the €30 mln budget will go towards building brand new premises with 20,000 sqm of space on municipal land in the Mackenzie area, with construction expected to be completed in just over three years.

The other half will go towards recruitment with plans to host as many as 200 to 300 researchers, including graduate students working towards their post-doctoral research.

The CMMI will focus on the ‘blue economy’ and cover a broad range of subjects, as long as it falls within the remit of “an independent, international, scientific and business centre of excellence in marine and maritime activities”.

It will include technology, product development, innovation and entrepreneurship, training and education, start-ups and beta country development.

“All of these projects will breathe new life into the town which has been left behind the rest of the island’s cities,” said Vyras.

Asked about the town’s ambitious marina and port redevelopment project, the Larnaca Mayor said that they are awaiting the final tender approval from the government in the upcoming weeks.