Featured in this EMEA Hospitality Newsletter - Week Ending 16 April 2004
Tick Box If You Have Made A Capital Gain
Hilton's Walls And Bridges
The Turn Of The Dutch To Take Tobruk
There You Go, More Links In The UK Days Inn Chain
Good Hunting In Scotland
Cushman & Wakefield Reach Southern Poland
Belfast Next For Malmaison
Soho House After Some Action
InterContinental Hotels' Mood Is Indigo
Simons' Leeds; Other Developments Follow

Tick Box If You Have Made A Capital Gain
Once he has filled in all the necessary forms by 8 May, former tax inspector Derek Quinlan will have completed a deal that made all the headlines in the run-up to Easter. His consortium Quinlan Private saw off a determined challenge from Saudi billionaire Prince Al Walid to capture The Savoy Group and its four world famous London hotels. The Savoy Group's owners, Blackstone Group and Colony Capital, had originally intended to sell only Claridge's. But when the US twosome realised just what interest this proposed sale had unleashed they decided that The Savoy, The Connaught and The Berkeley might as well be sold too. The reported £750 million that Mr Quinlan has offered will also buy him the Savoy Theatre and the Simpson's-in-the-Strand restaurant. It is thought that the new owners will spend some £100 million adding a total of 200 rooms to the hotels, with The Savoy expecting to welcome 150 of these. And future expansion might not be confined to just a few extra rooms in London. One report suggests that Quinlan Private wants to exploit the Claridge's name by opening a chain of hotels worldwide bearing the Claridge's brand.

Hilton's Walls And Bridges Return to Headlines
Walls Leisure, a subsidiary of PJ Walls Holdings, has tempted Hilton International into making its third trip to the Irish capital with a management agreement on what will be the Hilton Dublin Airport. The €45 million 166-room, four-star hotel, which should be ready by next spring, will form part of a €350 million mixed-use development on Malahide Road. The Hilton fountain pen has signed with a flourish too on a lease agreement waved by London Bridge Holdings and More London Development on a 245-room, four-star hotel that is expected to start its rise this autumn on the south bank of the Thames in London. The Hilton London Tower Bridge, which is due to open in late 2006, will be part of the More London Place mixed-use development. If it's a view of the Tyne Bridge you're after then you should book a stay at the 254-room, de luxe four-star Hilton Newcastle Gateshead, which opened on 12 April.

The Turn Of The Dutch To Take Tobruk Return to Headlines
Libya will continue to enjoy the pleasure of having a newly restored international leg to stand on by using it to kick sand in the face of its rivals in the North African hotel sector. A report suggests that the authorities have signed a US$1.2 billion contract with Dutch firm Ladorado that will see ten tourist complexes built over the next seven years in the northeastern city of Tobruk. Across in Morocco, Accor Maroc has announced that it will start work in June on the construction of a Novotel in the southwestern city of Agadir as part of its plan to bring seven new hotels to the country by the end of 2005. Elsewhere, a group of Lebanese and Kuwaiti investors are hoping for clearance to begin work later this year on the Land Mark development in the Lebanese capital Beirut. The US$200 million project consists of a 40-storey tower, part of which will be occupied by a five-star hotel.

There You Go, More Links In The UK Days Inn Chain Return to Headlines
Cendant Hotel Group Europe is steadily progressing towards its target of 60 Days-branded properties in the UK by the end of this year. The Days Hotel Birmingham East and the Days Inn Clacton-on-Sea are both due to open this July, bringing the total UK portfolio by the end of that month to 36. Cendant expects Manchester and Luton to succumb soon, and looking ahead to March 2005 it can already see Suffolk enjoying the Days Inn Haverhill and Warwickshire rejoicing in the Days Inn Nuneaton.

Good Hunting In Scotland Return to Headlines
New Edinburgh and the Branded Hotel and Leisure Company would like a 155-room 'upper budget' hotel to grace the Edinburgh Park business park and are hoping that the council in the Scottish capital will grant them permission. While you wait for news from the council chamber you could run your eye over the 195-room InterContinental – The George, which, as had been widely expected, is now up for sale with a minimum asking price of £25 million. If your budget is lower and you prefer Glasgow then your luck is in, as Jurys Doyle Hotel Group has decided to put the Jurys Glasgow Hotel up for sale on the open market after private negotiations apparently proved unsatisfactory. The 137-room, three-star hotel has an asking price of a reported £10.9 million. However, if you have no spare cash then why not stay in Glasgow and rather than buy a hotel watch one being extended. The 88-room Express by Holiday Inn there is to gain an extra 30 rooms costing a total of a reported £1.5 million.

Cushman & Wakefield Reach Southern Poland Return to Headlines
The Polish press reports that US real estate consultancy Cushman & Wakefield is to spend US$50 million on the purchase from Semako of the 290-room Hotel Rzeszów in southeastern Poland and the construction of a trade centre nearby. In the same corner of the country, meanwhile, the 50-room Grand Hotel in the city of Cracow has been elevated to five-star status. Elsewhere in eastern Europe, Hoteleria Turistike Shqiptare, a consortium of 24 local entrepreneurs, made the highest bid – a reported US$6.2 million – at the auction of the 161-room Tirana International Hotel. The Albanian capital Tirana is also poised to welcome a new addition to its stock of hotels: the luxury 26-room Diplomat Fashion, in which native operator Diplomat has invested some US$4.9 million.

Belfast Next For Malmaison Return to Headlines
Belfast is the first city to emerge from among those named last month by Marylebone Warwick Balfour as the next confirmed location for a Malmaison hotel. Hard labour is currently transforming the former Oxford Prison into a Malmaison property, but comparatively little effort should be needed to turn the 60-room McCausland Hotel into property number eight in the Malmaison chain. Work is due to begin this July, with an opening date of December 2004 scheduled. Over the border and away to the south whoever purchases the former railway station block at Tramore, Co. Waterford, will already have the planning permission in place that would allow the building to be redeveloped as a 41-room hotel. On the opposite side of the Irish Sea, in south Wales, DL O'Driscoll Property Management has pulled up at its own station – one that used to house the police in the town of Ammanford. The company and an anonymous partner have begun work on the £1 million transformation of the buiding into a 25-room, five-star hotel, which is due to open by 2006.

Soho House After Some Action Return to Headlines
The private members' club Soho House is reportedly interested in supplementing its 24-room Soho House New York hotel with other boutique properties. The company would like to spend £13.7 million opening hotels in Europe and North America, with cities such as London, Paris and Los Angeles mentioned. Any expansion could be funded by Soho House's listing itself or attracting funds from private equity firms.

InterContinental Hotels' Mood Is Indigo Return to Headlines
As a first-anniversary present InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has chosen to treat itself to a new hotel brand. Hotel Indigo, the seventh brand in IHG's canon, is said by the company to be a lifestyle brand that will offer a hotel experience, not just a hotel room. According to Steve Porter, IHG's President for the Americas region, the brand is designed to appeal in particular to guests in the mid-market sector who want higher quality at the right price. Travellers will be able to judge for themselves when the first Hotel Indigo opens later this year with 140 rooms in the US city of Atlanta, Georgia.

Simons' Leeds; Other Developments Follow Return to Headlines
Simons Estates has proved it has an eye for a deal and a head for heights by clinching the contract to build two glass towers in Leeds. The taller of the two has 47 storeys and it will be the city's tallest building. The towers will be part of the £200 million Criterion Place development, which is to include a hotel. The towers could offer good views to those armed with powerful telescopes of the horse-racing at Salford in Greater Manchester. Peel Holdings wants the proposed £100 million Salford Forest Park racecourse to include a hotel and an 18-hole golf course. Silverlink Property Developments is making all the running to secure the Stephenson Quarter development site in Newcastle. A bid of £4 million should apparently be sufficient to prise the eight acres from St Mary the Virgin Estate Management; Silverlink would then build a hotel as part of a predominantly office-themed project.

Absolute Share Price Performance Over the Past Two Weeks 01/04/04-15/04/04

Millennium & Copthorne - Citigroup Smith Barney raised its rating on the stock from 'Sell' to 'Hold'.

Accor - The share price benefited from SG Securities' decision to upgrade its rating from 'Hold' to 'Buy'.

NH Hoteles - Investors were cheered by the company's announcement of the first dividend payment in four years.