$200M Guam resort hotel to open on Tumon Bay

HAGATNA, Guam – Guam’s first upscale hotel to rise in Tumon Bay in more than a decade is hiring more than 350 people as it prepares for a soft opening in April.

Dusit Thani Guam Resort yesterday announced it will hold a job fair on Saturday for positions across all departments of the resort as well as jobs at six dining and entertainment outlets and Devarana Spa.

“We are excited to find individuals with a great attitude who want to be inspired and a part of setting a new benchmark of hospitality on Guam,” said the new hotel’s General Manager Dean Huntsman.

“With our highly anticipated soft opening slated for April, the Dusit Thani Guam Resort … helps create hundreds of jobs for the people of Guam,” he said in a press release.

A project of local developer Tanota Partners, the hotel will have 419 deluxe guest rooms and suites.

It will have a convention centre with nine function rooms, including a 1,200-square-meter grand ballroom; a state-of-the-art fitness centre; swimming pool; kids’ room; and Thai-inspired massage treatments at the Devarana Spa, according to the resort.

The last hotel to rise in Tumon before Dusit also is a property of Tanota and currently runs under the Outrigger resort brand.

The Dusit Thani Guam project has been estimated last year to cost close to $200 million, and that cost still holds today, said Mindy Aguon, Dusit Thani Guam’s public relations manager.

The resort is expected to hold a grand opening in June, Aguon said.

Tanota Partners and Dusit International signed an agreement in 2013 allowing the internationally known hotel brand Dusit to manage the hotel and run it based on its luxurious standards.

Aguon said Dusit is confident about finding qualified workers locally for the more than 350 positions that are being filled.

Gary Hiles, chief economist at the Guam Department of Labor, said with more than 4,000 people on Guam who are classified as unemployed, who want a job and are looking for one — it’s clear that there are sufficient numbers of workers available for a new hotel.

From 1987 to 1993, when the unemployment rate was mostly below 5 per cent, and as a new hotel after new hotel opened, hotels managed to recruit and hire staff, Hiles said.

In that period, major hotels that opened include the Pacific Star, Hotel Nikko, Hyatt Regency Guam, Onward Beach Resort, PIA Marine, and the former Palace Hotel, and LeoPalace Resort, Hiles stated.

Programs at the Guam Community College and the University of Guam’s International Tourism and Hospitality Management program as well as in-house training that will be provided by Dusit Thani will all contribute to meeting the challenge of matching the candidates for the specific job requirements of the new hotel, Hiles stated.

Dusit Thani’s opening helps Guam’s tourism industry meet its goal of adding 1,600 new hotel rooms by 2020 to match the Guam Visitors Bureau’s goal of 2 million tourists every year, starting six years from now.

Guam last year saw a 0.6 per cent increase in visitor arrivals, to 1.37 million.