17.3 acres, that is 69,940 m2 of the St. Felix beach are no longer part of the public beach.
When questioned, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Housing and Lands Showkutally Soodhun argues that this was done “under the old regime.”
According to the Minister of Housing and Lands, it is “under the old regime” that 17.3 acres of the St. Felix beach would no longer be in the public domain. However, the notice issued under Article 2 of the Beach Authority Act 2002, allowing this large portion of the beach to be used for a hotel project was published on August 24 and was signed by Deputy Prime Minister himself.
On Monday September 5 Showkutally Soodhun nevertheless maintains that it is an act dating from the Ramgoolam era. “Ce n’est pas moi qui ai retiré cette plage du domaine public. Par contre, j’ai donné 14 hectares en compensation juste à côté de ce site,” he says.
At the Ministry of Housing and Lands, they were not able to indicate what led to withdraw this part of the beach in the public domain. If Showkutally Soodhun speaks of the former government, he probably refers to Midas Acropolis. The company obtained 31.4 acres of state land in St. Felix in 2006. But they had to return the land last year because they were not able to implement the hotel project. Before Midas Acropolis, the same land was entrusted to Saint Félix Worldwide Resort (SFWR), who could not realize the project either.
Last November, there was talk that the South African group Clear Ocean Hotel and Resort Limited to build a hotel establishment at a cost of Rs 12.8 billion. The group plans to build a 5-star establishment with 152 suites, 57 luxury villas with all necessary facilities (restaurants, spa, clubhouse, conference room, swimming pools, parking for 6000 m2 and facilities with an area of 18 000 m2 aquatic activities). The management would be entrusted to Starwood Hotels. It remains to be seen if that much of the beach in St-Felix was removed from the public domain for this particular project.