|The Burj Khalifa in Dubai... and a replica soon in Beijing?|
Sometimes you have to wonder if Chinese officials have any shred of common sense left in them.
There was a report a few days ago that Beijing authorities are planning to build a "seven-star hotel" in Mentougou, a suburb of the Chinese capital, 30 kilometres away from the city centre.
Apparently the hotel will be modeled after Dubai's Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building at 828 metres, in a $1.3 billion joint project with Saudi Arabia.
Or have the Chinese hoodwinked the Saudis into giving them a lot of money to build a white elephant?
A district official claimed the Saudi side would foot the entire bill, but refused to explain why such an expensive construction project would be located in an underdeveloped rural area.
And the seven star rating? A hotel in Beijing that looks like a dragon near the Bird's Nest and Water Cube already gave itself that rating and even put it in its official name. The Pangu 7 Star Hotel originally charged exorbitant room rates, but now on the website I see the rates are between 1,688RMB ($254.27) for an executive deluxe room to 9,888 ($1,489.50) for a premium suite. Perhaps the presidential suite is one of those things where if you have to ask, it's too expensive.
Nevertheless, most people know seven-star ratings are not internationally recognized which makes the Pangu, and this yet-to-be-built hotel in Mentougou even more ridiculous.
It's funny how the Beijing officials didn't make it an "eight-star hotel"... or maybe they knew it would be too obvious if they added an extra star...