“Amazing, wonderful, outstanding, stunning, pristine and gorgeous were some of the superlatives said by people upon seeing the Haven at its site,” said Peter Chan, Managing Director and CEO of The Haven Sdn Bhd during the opening ceremony of The Haven Luxury Resort Hotel Suites on Friday, August 14 at Lake Garden Tower Cycas.

“To protect the environment we avoid cutting down trees or blasting the hills. We harvested all available energy resources to reduce carbon footprint, created special pits to decompose waste matter for use as fertilisers, prohibited the use of artificial and chemical sprays, designed high and wide windows and iron-grilled doors with multiple-hole punctures to allow air flow, thus reducing the use of air-conditioners,” he remarked at the site which has been certified by geologists as predating the Palaeozoic period.

One hundred and fifty units of hotel suites, with sizes ranging from 868 sq ft to 2072 sq ft and operated by Best Western International, were officially opened by Dato’ Seri Mohamed Nazri bin Abdul Aziz, the Minister of Tourism and Culture. The occasion was formalised by a tree-planting ceremony followed by the signing of a wall plaque.

“I really love this place. I can imagine what it was before. It must have just been a neglected part of Perak. Out of nothing, you’ve created something, especially for my state of Perak. I am very much overwhelmed,” said Nazri in his speech. He lauded The Haven’s timely launch which complemented the economic blueprint of the state while encouraging tourism to Ipoh.

The momentous event was made more colourful by cultural dance performances staged by the state dance troupe, Selendang Perak. The show culminated in a sing-along of The Haven theme song composed by Peter Chan himself.

Present at the launch were Dato’ Mirza Mohammad Taiyab, Director-General of Tourism Malaysia; Madam Chong Yoke Har, Deputy Director-General of Tourism Malaysia; Datuk Rashidi Hasbullah, Deputy Secretary-General (Tourism); Dato’ Nolee Ashilin Mohammed Radzi, Executive Councillor for Tourism, Arts, Culture, Multimedia and Communications; Haji Ibrahim Seddiqi Talib, Director of Tourism Malaysia (Perak); Olivier Berrivin, Managing Director of International Operations –Asia of Best Western International Asia; Hj Sabini Tijan, President of KTM; Dato’ Roshidi Hashim, Non-Executive Chairman of the Board of Leweko Resources Berhad and Tan Sri Lee Oi Hean, CEO and Executive Director of Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad.

The Haven has won over 30 prestigious resort awards, both locally and internationally, including the Best Green Development, Asia’s Best Resort Residences, Luxury Retreat of The Year and the overall global award winner.

In conjunction with the ceremony, a familiarisation tour hosted by The Haven, in collaboration with Tourism Malaysia and Keretapi Tanah Melayu, was held from Thursday, August 13 to Saturday, August 15. The tour was tailor-made for media representatives to savour the touristic sights of Perak. Nazri had identified The Haven as the base for future Tourism Ministry-sponsored familiarisation trips to Perak.

Mei Kuan