State-private partnership to transform Gudauri into world-class ski resort

Gudauri is one of major ski resorts of Georgia. Photo by N.Alavidze/, 24 Jun 2016 - 13:46, Tbilisi,Georgia

The Mountain Resorts Development Company (MRDC) and a local real estate development company has signed a deal that will transform one of Georgia's leading mountain resorts into a world-class winter wonderland.

The deal, penned today between the MRDC under the Ministry of Economy of Georgia and Red-Co, will see both sides come together to carry out new, unprecendented infrastructural activities at Gudauri resort. 

Through the efforts of both sides, in the next few years Gudauri, located 120km from capital Tbilisi, will undergo a major transformation to turn the resort into a world leading ski resort.

Last month Red-Co said it had purchased 50 hectares of land in Gudauri where it would build the world's highest alpine resort zone.

The real estate company planned to invest $150 million in the development of Gudauri. 

The master plan for the resort development was created by Ecosign Mountain Resort Planners of Canada. 

Initially 10 hectares will be developed and this included the construction of 26 buildings. 

Based on the Gudauri master plan two, three, four and five-star hotels will be built in the area, as well as aparthotels, townhouses, villas, ice rinks, restaurants, entertainment centers, sports grounds, shops, tennis courts, spa centers and a casino. 

The resort will also  be equipped with modern underground and ground-level parking for more than 1,600 cars. 

Meanwhile, Red-Co has already gained consent from Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide to build and operate a Sheraton and Four Points by Sheraton hotels in Gudauri. 

MRDC said implementing of the Gudauri development would be hard without state-initiated infrastructural projects

It said the Government was about to begin comprehensive  rehabilitation of Gudauri's water systems, which will end the water provision problems that plague the resort. 

Additionally, the Georgian Government planned to build another cable-car in Gudauri this summer. 

While Gudauri was predominantly a winter resort, in summer the mountain boasted a 5km long mountain bike track that was open to intermediate and professional cyclists and other tourists. 

The MRDC said the number of tourists who visited Gudauri was growing year-on-year. Figures showed 201,821 people visited the resort in winter 2015-2016, and this was a record compared to previous years.