Maldives Information Series
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Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort and Spa, Maldives
Creating Jobs in a Nation of Atolls
Crystal-clear blue water and 26 white sand atolls make up the Republic of Maldives. Tourism has helped the country transform from one of the poorest countries in the world thirty years ago to a middle-income country today. Villingili is a large island with lush vegetation, palm trees and three natural lagoons located in the southernmost part of the country. The government planned the luxury Shangri-La’s Villingili Resort and Spa together with Shangri-La Group, a leading owner and operator of deluxe hotels and resorts in Asia, the Middle East, North America and Europe. When the government was unable to meet investment obligations to the project, IFC helped finance the $143 million investment project with a $50 million loan.
Development Impact: 2014 Snapshot
Contribution to GDP
• The hotel contributed just over $27 million to Maldives’ gross domestic product.
Total Tax Contribution
• The hotel contributed $8.3 million in taxes to the government
• High tax contributions for this hotel reflect high tourism tax rates in this tourism-centric economy.
Labor Market Impact
• Shangri-La sustains over 1,600 jobs overall, including almost 600 direct jobs.
• The share of women working at Shangri-La is twice the average for the hotel industry in Maldives, a country where the culture discourages women from working in resorts.
• The hotel is creating stable job opportunities for Maldivians under 24, who make up ten percent of Shangri-La’s workforce.
• Given Shangri-La’s high standards, its training programs are high-quality and transfer skills to employees useful for other resorts in the Maldives.
Image | Shangri-La Villingili Resort and Spa Maldives
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