Karlovy Vary, West Bohemia, July 9 (CTK) – The reconstruction of Hotel Thermal, the heart of the annual International Film Festival, will start after the event ends in 2017, Czech Finance Minister Andrej Babis said on Saturday, adding that he believes that the estimated costs of 734 million crowns will be markedly cut.
The estimate does not include the repair of the open-air heated pool, which has been closed for two years because of its technical condition. Babis said its reconstruction will wait since the hotel is a priority.
Babis said no investment has been made in the state-owned hotel for almost 40 years.
He said the Environment Ministry has been asked for a subsidy for warming up the building and for new windows.
Babis said all works must be done between two editions of the festival which is held every July. The reconstruction must also honour the copyright of Vera and Vladimir Machonin who designed the hotel.
Hotel Thermal made a net profit of 3.2 million crowns last year, which was 5.5 million crowns less than in 2014. Like other hotels in Karlovy vary, Thermal was hit by a decline in the strong Russian clientele.
The year-on-year decrease in the number of guests from Russian-speaking countries was 44 percent.
Hotel director Rudolf Masata told CTK on Saturday that the hotel wants to focus on Chinese clients who have only been coming for short stays for the time being.