KUALA LUMPUR: A 77-storey hotel project is set to compete for attention with Malaysia's iconic Petronas Twin Towers and change Kuala Lumpur's skyline, as the second-tallest building in the city centre.
Being constructed next to the Twin Towers, Four Seasons Place Kuala Lumpur will overlook the KLCC park and be directly connected to the esplanade once construction is complete in 2018.
However, at a height of 342.5m, the hotel tower will, from some angles, obscure views of the Twin Towers, which stand at 451.9m.
The project developed by Venus Assets with China Railway Construction Corp as contractor is estimated to have a gross development value of RM3 billion (US$700.4 million) and will include 242 Four Seasons Private Residences, 27 serviced apartments, a 209-key Four Seasons hotel and a five-floor, 300,000 sq ft (27,900 sq m) luxury retail podium.
“There are those who are willing to pay to stay in such hotels and there would be tourists who would visit a place just to stay in such a hotel," Malaysia's Tourism and Culture Minister Nazri Aziz said last month.
The Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) is not as optimistic.
"It should not have happened and been approved in the first place," MATTA President KL Tan told Channel NewsAsia. "Our Twin Towers are an iconic tourist attraction - they should not be blocked at all.
"Tourists want to have a nice view and take photos of the twin towers, once the tallest buildings in the world."
Response from the public has been mixed with some welcoming the addition to the skyline while others were less enthused.
The Four Seasons Place is not the only skyscraper in the works in the capital city.
The 635m-high KL118 tower, by UEM Group and South Korea's Samsung C, will overtake the Twin Towers as the tallest building in Malaysia and be among the tallest in the world if constructed as planned by 2020.
Other towering additions to the Kuala Lumpur skyline include Tradewinds Square in Jalan Sultan Ismail ( which is also expected to exceed 600m), Exchange 106 (452m) and Fairmont Kuala Lumpur (380m).