The construction of the five-star Radisson SAS Golden Sands Resort and Spa was completed in September 2005. The resort was constructed on the clifftop site of the original Golden Sands Hotel. Built in the 1960s and operated by the Maltese Fenech family, the original hotel was demolished between April and July 2003.
The new hotel occupies one of the prime sites in Malta, with panoramic views over Golden Bay and the Mediterranean. The new resort was constructed for an estimated cost of Lm12m (£18.7m/US$34.8m) and is part of the Islands Hotel Group in Malta, which includes Bugibba Holiday Complex Limited, Coastline Hotel Limited, Bay Point Hotel Limited and Island Caterers Limited.
The resort was financed by Rezidor SAS Hospitality of Brussels and is operated under the Radisson Hotels brand (Rezidor SAS Hospitality aim to operate 700 hotels by 2012). The resort initially employed 250 staff between October 2004 and May 2005, but this increased to 300 over the first six months of operation.
The hotel has 337 rooms and five-star facilities including 24 meeting and conference rooms (total of 2,000m²), a business centre, a nightclub, a 1,000m² therapy centre, spa and nine restaurants and bars. The resort also offers ‘The Island Residence Club’, where guests can purchase the right to use apartments in the resort for a specified period during the year over a 40-year term.
The hotel’s 337 rooms include the Double Dream collection (23 rooms) the Serene collection (144 deluxe rooms), and the Zenith collection (164 suites with separate lounge and bathroom). In addition, there are four luxury three-bedroom penthouse suites and two presidential suites.
Over half of the rooms enjoy an unimpeded view of Golden Bay, with the remainder overlooking the northern Maltese countryside. Standard rooms measure 35m² with one-bedroom suites measuring 90m² and two-bedroom suites measuring 110m². The three-bedroom suites and the presidential suites have areas in excess of 250m². All rooms have free broadband via a hotel-wide Wi-Fi network.
The hotel includes two reception areas and four restaurants including ‘Flavours’, which can accommodate 450 guests, two smaller exclusive dining rooms and a fast food restaurant.
There is also a lagoon bar and restaurant, a cocktail bar, two poolside bars, several lounges and an ice cream parlour. Bars and restaurants account for 2,000m² of floor space.
Guests have access to a gymnasium with incorporated indoor pool and Jacuzzi, a 1,000m² spa and wellness centre, tennis courts and horse riding facilities. The resort also offers a full range of water sports including a diving centre and the use of a private beach.
Meeting facilities include a 600m² ballroom, a 1,200m² conference centre, a 315m² coral room, the 515m² crescent room and a business centre (including broadband, Wi-Fi and full multimedia facilities).
GOLDEN SANDS CONSTRUCTION
Island Hotels Group purchase of the hotel complex from the Fenech family was concluded in January 2003, with redevelopment plans taking place shortly afterwards.
The old hotel could not be incorporated into the new plan and was demolished in 2003. Furnishing and fittings were sold for reuse or given to charity. Electrical cabling and equipment was stored for reinstallation in the new hotel complex. All of the aluminium and steel in the old building was exported as scrap and the majority of the 50,000m³ of rubble from the old building was used to construct the base layers of new roads for the resort.
The new main hotel building was built 40m away from the cliff edge, creating space at front of the property for a 15,000m² landscaped garden.
The design of the complex buildings and interior was carried out by Wimberley, Allison, Tong and Goo (WATG) in conjunction with BCS Ltd of Malta and architect Edgar Rossignaud.
Vassallo Builders were awarded the Lm2m construction contract. The contract for the mechanical and electrical works was awarded to Panta Contracting Ltd of Msida. The interior fitting out and decorating contract was awarded to Hal Mann Projects of Malta.