» » Lotte makes up ground on new complex

VNRE - Korea’s leading retailer Lotte Group last week said that development of its first ever shopping centre in Hanoi was right on track.

The huge Lotte Centre Hanoi is located opposite the Daewoo business centre in Hanoi’s Dao Tan street and is to be a towering 65-storey building when completed.

Lee Jong Kook, president of Lotte Coralis Vietnam told VIR that, as of last week, the company was working on the second of five basements for the new skyscraper. “Because this is one of the tallest high-rise buildings in Vietnam we have dedicated a lot of time and energy to the basement.”

He added that building five basement levels in Vietnam presented more of a technical challenge than in Korea, and that the company and its sub-contractors had been very careful to find appropriate solutions.

“But construction will be smoother from now on,” Kook said.

Kook explained that the project also suffered delays during Hanoi’s 1,000 year anniversary festivities in October last year. “We are trying to speed up the schedule,” he said.

When completed, the new Lotte tower will be the third highest in the country behind the 70-storey Keangnam Hanoi Landmark Tower in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City’s Bitexco tower which has 68 storeys.

Lotte started construction in October 2009. The $400 million complex extends over more than 14,000 square metres. When finished, it will house more than 42,200 sqm of department store space. Inside, there will also be 300 hotel rooms while 63,500sqm is given over to office space. Serviced apartments are to take up about 40,000sqm and there is provision for 1,130 parking spaces.

If all went smoothly, the centre would open in 2013, said Kook.

Located at the corner of Lieu Giai and Dao Tan streets, near the Hanoi Daewoo hotel, the project is perfectly situated. The building’s unique architecture is inspired by Vietnam’s traditional dress, the Ao dai.

“This project is about Lotte expanding its long term investment in Vietnam,” said Kook.

“The company entered the Vietnamese market in 1996 and has since expanded its cooperation into the food, retail, cinema and construction sectors. It has eight subsidiaries and is committed to continue accelerating its investment here,” Kook added.

The Lotte Tower project was originally a joint venture between Luxembourg-based company Coralis SA and Lohr Industrie in 2005. However in 2008 the project was transferred to Lotte at a cost of $55.7 million.

Lotte was established in 1965 in South Korea. Its main activities include retail, food and beverages, chemicals and construction as well as hotels and resorts. The company is the fifth biggest conglomerate in Korea and has a more than 50 per cent retail market share in that country. In Vietnam, the group is operating Lotte Mart Phu Tho and Lotte Mart Phu My Hung in Ho Chi Minh City.

Reported by Bich Ngoc | VIR

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