updated 1/7/2010 12:27:23 PM ET 2010-01-07T17:27:23

Choice Hotels is opening the first chain hotels to serve Haiti in almost a decade.

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A spokesman for the Maryland-based company said Thursday that a Comfort Inn will open in the Caribbean coastal city of Jacmel this May.

The 32-room motel will be owned by a New York-based group of Haitian-American investors. The partners also plan a 120-room upscale hotel at the nearby Belle Rive tourism development this fall.

These are the company's first hotels in Haiti. Holiday Inn left Haiti several years ago and a planned Hilton hotel was canceled amid political upheaval and collapsing infrastructure.

The United Nations is leading an effort to attract tourism and investment back to the impoverished country.

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