Luxury resort to open in Liberia

July 31, 2008 at 11:32 AM

MONROVIA, Liberia, July 31 (UPI) -- U.S. resort builder Robert L. Johnson Companies is pushing ahead with a luxury resort in Liberia, not long after a civil war ended there, sources said.

Liberia has been rocked by two civil wars in the past 20 years and has a reputation of violence and corruption, Allafrica.com reported Thursday.

RLJ company Chairman Robert Johnson, inspired by a 2006 speech in New York given by Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, pressed ahead with plans for a 10-acre beachfront resort near the capital, Monrovia, the report said.

"You'll have all the amenities that you would expect at any U.S. based or European based resort," said project manager Corey Printup.

The $12 million RLJ Kendeja Resort & Villas will generate its own electricity and include redundant operating systems as protection against possible repair delays, Printup said.

Bob Johnson has taken his commitment to the country further, establishing a $30 million Liberia Enterprise Development Fund, and pledging $3 million to it.

The fund was founded to help Liberians create jobs and start new businesses, the report said.

The resort is expected to open in March 2009.

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