The first five-star hotel to grace the city of Valletta has been inaugurated following a 15 million euro investment. The Rosselli hotel in the heart of the capital city is a project by the AX Group, with the Group planning to open two other hotels in 2021 and 2022.
An old palazzo in Merchants Street has been restored by the AX Group as part of a 15 million euro project over a two-and-a-half year span for the building to be transformed into a luxury five-star hotel named the Rosselli, this being the surname of the family who had lived in this palace in the mid-17th century.
With 25 exclusive suites the hotel, in the words of AX Group chairman Angelo Xuereb, is the crowning glory of his vision for the island’s capital city, going back to when he had proposed a master plan for Valletta’s’ regeneration thirty years ago. Mr Xuereb described the restoration process as a sensitive one, which meant it took longer than normal.
Mr Xuereb appealed to the Planning Authority to set up a special board for supervising and deciding on similar regeneration projects in Valletta, Cottonera, Imdina and the Citadel.
“Because Valletta is unique… in 1970 there were 15,500 residents. Today, as a result of lack of investment and lack of restoration and regeneration of buildings, there are now only 500 residents. There is therefore a need for investment in these dilapidated buildings, so that Valletta can be restored to its original state.”
AX Group Director Claire Zammit Xuereb described Valletta as a unique capital city which deserves quality tourists, adding that the hotel Roselli will complement the progress and development in Valletta in recent years. Mrs Zammit Xuereb stated that the aim of the group is not to sell rooms, but rather, to provide memorable experiences to a niche of quality tourists from new markets.
Valletta Mayor Alfred Zammit welcomed this quality development, which he said was carried out in harmony with the city’s residents. Zammit added that this continued to bestow a distinctive mark on the capital city.
Prime Minister Joseph Muscat stated that the new hotel perfectly fits in with Government’s aim of attracting quality tourists to Malta. Dr Muscat added that government is confident about the future of tourism, with 1.5 million tourists already having visited the island in the first seven months of the year, and this apaprt from tourists visiting on cruise liners.
Dr Muscat said Government would continue to strengthen the quality of the tourist product with improvements in the operation of the national airline Air Malta and with capital projects which include improvements in road infrastructure. The Prime Minister added that the proposal for a specialised board to handle regeneration projects merits consideration.