PanJam to open ROK Hotel this summer after near 2-year delay | Loop Jamaica

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News | Loop News

PanJam Investment Limited has said it will officially welcome guests to its 168-room ROK Hotel property this summer.

ROK Hotel Kingston, Tapestry Collection by Hilton, which was initially slated to open in 2020, is now accepting reservations from guests for July 21 and beyond, according to Hilton’s website.

PanJam CEO Joanna Banks said the ROK Hotel is seeing interest from tourism and business travellers but could not publicly disclose the number of bookings received at this time.

The contemporary ROK Hotel, which will offer flexible space for meetings and events, will also serve as an accommodation option for guests attending events at the Jamaica Conference Centre just across the street.

“I love that our location is next to the Jamaica Conference Centre, which has seen an uptick in the number of bookings for international conferences,” Banks told PanJam’s annual general meeting last month.

“We are excited about the ROK, and we are excited to get the doors open,” Banks added.

PanJam began the development of the ROK Hotel, located at the corner of King Street and Ocean Boulevard in downtown Kingston, in 2019 and simultaneously started work on the ROK Residences on the top four floors of the 12-storey building.

The ROK Residences will boast 41 residential units — 13 one-bedroom, 22 two-bedroom, and six penthouse apartments to be sold to individual investors.

PanJam’s chairman Stephen Facey said the company is cautiously optimistic about its investment in the ROK.

He noted that sales have begun for the apartments and said PanJam is “pleased with the level of interest and the number of sales made to date.”

“I think we can look forward to an interesting and exciting second half of the year,” Facey said.

PanJam, in its 2021 annual report, indicated that it anticipates increased returns on its hospitality assets over the next two years due to a broad uptick in global and tourism activity.

The company is also evaluating its options for a hotel on a five-acre property in Freeport, Montego Bay.

“Given that we may have the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic behind us, we are evaluating our options for the property within the framework of a reinvigorated global tourism market. We will inform our shareholders when we have updates,” Banks said in response to Loop News queries.

PanJam holds minority positions in diverse private entities across the adventure tourism, business process outsourcing, hospitality, consumer products, micro-lending and office rental sectors.

Its financial performance showed a remarkable turnaround relative to 2020, which was significantly affected by the pandemic. In 2021, net profit attributable to owners amounted to $7.2 billion, up from $3.5 billion in 2020.

More recent results for the first quarter ended March 2022 showed profits of $1.1 billion, a five per cent increase relative to the comparative quarter of March 2021.

PanJam’s share of results of associated companies for the first three months of 2022 increased by $251.7 million, or 27.9 per cent, compared to the same period in 2021, driven by Sagicor’s results, which grew by 31.3 per cent.

Income from PanJam’s core operations for the quarter remained relatively flat year-over-year.

Its securities trading portfolio generated marginally improved investment income of $236.9 million, driven by higher dividends and unrealized trading gains.

PanJam said though property income declined by 4.2 per cent, its real estate portfolio continued to show resilience with stable occupancy of 92 per cent.