“If suddenly they build an unapproved tower, of course we will stop them and demolish it.”
Despite months of protests from locals, the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Bali is moving forward — although locals are ready to “demolish” the hotel if it does not respect local building laws.
Local legend warns that anyone who builds higher than a coconut tree (about 50 feet) will anger the gods.
“If suddenly they build an unapproved tower, of course we will stop them and demolish it,” Ida Bagus Wiratmaja, head of the district’s development and planning agency, told the Associated Press. “There are special rules for the temple and the temple area.”
MNC, a development conglomerate and Trump’s partner in Asia, said in March that it will respect local height restrictions when building the new property. The Trump Organization is still billing the project as a tower.
Although MNC says they are still in the design process for the hotel, they will close the resort already on the property by the middle of the year. According to a Bloomberg report, there are rumors in Bali that the company will try to buy up additional land from locals to expand the hotel.
The site of the hotel overlooks the Tanah Lot temple, a 16th-century Hindu temple considered to be one of the most important in the country.
The luxury hotel promises to put luxury to shame. Instead of a mere five stars, the Trump International Hotel and Tower will boast six. According to the hotel’s website, the Trump Hotel will be “the largest and most integrated lifestyle resort destination in Bali” upon completion. It will be the Trump Organization’s first resort in Asia. Construction is set to begin in early 2018.
Trump Hotels did not immediately respond to request for comment.