Crete resort project cleared after 26 year wait

UK leisure company Minoan Group said Tuesday that a top Greek court has cleared the way for the construction of its Itanos Gaia resort on the island of Crete, ending a 26 year wait for the project.

The construction of the 250 million euro resort, that will include 2,000 beds and an 18 hole golf course, had been blocked by local residents and environment groups, citing the impact on the natural landscape. The court ruled that the project won't harm the local environment.

Other delays to the project include changes to building laws that forced Minoan Group to downsize the resort from original plans.

Minoan Group, which had initially applied to build the project in 1991, said that it "now has an unappealable presidential decree, which, in effect, gives outline planning consent for the project and allows the board to take the steps necessary to crystallise value for all stakeholders."

The resort will be built on an area spreading more than 6,000 acres that has been leased to Minoan by the Ecclesiastical Foundation, Panagia Akrotiriani, according to the company's site.