Saturday, 16 January 2016

Strand Hotel, Yangon, Myanmar

This is another surprise card from Jobbo, received earlier this month. Thank you ever so much, I really like it! Your travel stories have been fascinating to read about.

The Strand (also known as Strand Hotel) is a Victorian-style hotel located in Yangon, Myanmar (Burma), built by Aviet and Tigran Sarkie, two of the Sarkies Brothers. The hotel, which opened in 1901, which faces the Hlaing — or Yangon — River to its south, is one of the most famous hotels in Yangon and Southeast Asia, and is managed by GCP Hospitality. The hotel is named after its address, at 92 Strand Road.

Downtown Yangon is known for its leafy avenues and fin-de-siècle architecture. The former British colonial capital has the highest number of colonial period buildings in Southeast Asia. Downtown Yangon is still mainly made up of decaying colonial buildings. The former High Court, the former Secretariat buildings, the former St. Paul's English High School and the Strand Hotel are excellent examples of the bygone era. Most downtown buildings from this era are four-story mix-use (residential and commercial) buildings with 4.3 m ceilings, allowing for the construction of mezzanines. Despite their less-than-perfect conditions, the buildings remain highly sought after and most expensive in the city's property market.

In 1996, the Yangon City Development Committee created a Yangon City Heritage List of old buildings and structures in the city that cannot be modified or torn down without approval. In 2012, the city of Yangon imposed a 50-year moratorium on demolition of buildings older than 50 years.

Yangon is a former capital of Myanmar and the capital of Yangon Region. Yangon is the country's largest city with a population of over five million, and is the most important commercial centre, although the military government officially relocated the capital to Naypyidaw in March 2006. Although Yangon's infrastructure is undeveloped compared to those of other major cities in Southeast Asia, it has the largest number of colonial buildings in the region today. While many high-rise residential and commercial buildings have been constructed or renovated throughout downtown and Greater Yangon in the past two decades, most satellite towns that ring the city continue to be deeply impoverished.

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