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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Floating Hotel owners discuss sites

Floating Hotel owners discuss sites

T he government has agreed to reopen the Thai-owned Floating Hotel but said the

business contract may have to be renewed, according to a spokesman of the

Ministry of Public Works and Transport.

"The government has agreed in

principle with the resumption of the Floating Hotel," said ministry spokesman

Meas Samith.

The hotel first opened under the former State of Cambodia

government which allowed Chaktomuk Theater on the riverbank to be used as part

of the hotel premises.

When the new government came into office after

the election, the four-story ship was ordered out and has been empty and

anchored near Chroy Changwa bridge for nearly two years.

Dechar Sarbua,

managing director of the Orlan Travel-owned hotel, and Thai embassy officials

met on Sep 14 with Minister Ing Kieth to discuss new operational sites for the

hotel.

Samith said Keith offered the company two possible locations:

either on the Mekong River east of Chroy Changwa bridge or off Hun Sen Garden

adjacent to Naga casino.

He said the government had no objection to the

company's preference of the spot south of Naga casino, however warned of the low

three-meter water level in the dry season.

To avoid being bogged the ship

needed the clearance depth of up to eight meters. This could be achieved by

pumping silt from the bottom of the river but that method was costly and a

burden on the company, Samith said.

"Pumping the silt should be carried

out on a large scale otherwise the site would get quickly refilled. Pumping will

cost millions of dollars," he said.

The other site east of the bridge has

a permanent depth of eight meters, he said.

No final decision has been

made, but the company would start work to inspect the sites.

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