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Renakse manager refuses to leave hotel

Renakse manager refuses to leave hotel

KEM CHANTHA, manager of the Renakse Hotel, will continue to defy a government request to vacate the historic property by the end of September, she told the Post on Tuesday.

"I am staying here to see what they will do because they are not respecting the law," she said. "I want the government to recognize my right to stay."

Kem Chantha has operated the hotel for more than two decades, and her lease is valid until April 2050, she said.

But a notice posted last week on the hotel's front gate said the property, owned by the Cambodian People's Party, had been sold to Alexan Inc and will be developed to provide housing for government officials.

Kem Chantha said the government offered US$200,000 in return for their breaking her lease.

She added that officials gave her no advanced notice of the sale and have offered only a fraction of the value of the hotel.

"My company could have offered much more than the $3.8 million I was told they accepted from the new owners," she said. The Renakse Hotel's nearly 7,000 square metres of property has increased in value as land prices citywide have skyrocketed in recent years.

"I want the government to recognise the injustice of this, and I won't leave until they do," she said. Government officials could not be reached for comment. 

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