Featured in this EMEA Hospitality Newsletter - Week Ending 30 January 2004
The First Marriott In Berlin, And Genoa Ramada's Opened Too
Sit Beside Sol Meliá's Gran And Have A Chat
Accor's Sales Leave Analysts Unruffled
Sunterra Creams Off Some Thurnham Assets
On The Beach With Kokache
Liverpool Vision Seeing Five Stars
Sir Rocco Will Remember Where He Was When Kennedy Was Built
Did Hotel Dvin Go For A Song?

The First Marriott In Berlin, And Genoa Ramada's Opened Too
The Berlin Marriott has the honour of being the first Marriott-branded hotel to open in the German capital. The 379-room property is Marriott International's fourth hotel in the city. For its latest openings Marriott's partner Ramada International has chosen Italy, which welcomes the 97-room Ramada Hotel & Suites Genoa Center, and the Czech Republic, where the 56-room Ramada Prague Airport Hotel has landed. The UK though must wait until spring for the third and fourth instalments of the continuing story of the Ramada Encore brand. BDL Hotels will then open the 150-room Ramada Encore London West, in Acton, and a 100-room property in Swansea, south Wales.

Sit Beside Sol Meliá's Gran And Have A Chat Return to Headlines
Sol Meliá has spent €10.3 million on a convention centre which has opened next to the Gran Meliá Victoria hotel on the island of Majorca. The centre, which covers some 1,300 m², has 11 meeting rooms. Property company Fadesa has no time to talk; it is off to the beach (Bastiagueiro, near Oleiros in the northwest of Spain) to build a 96-room, three-star hotel costing €11 million. The town of Oleiros is close to the port of La Coruña, which now boasts a 192-room, four-star hotel with Silken Hoteles' name on it; a 208-room hotel in the southeastern port of Alicante is also reported to have felt the Silken touch. NH Hoteles, meanwhile, would like to get its hands on the city of Milan and open what would be its first hotel in Italy.

Accor's Sales Leave Analysts Unruffled Return to Headlines
Certain analysts have been reassured by the way Accor has survived the war in Iraq, the outbreak of Sars, and currency effects to post full year 2003 revenues broadly in line with their respective expectations. The final figure of €6.8 billion was down 4.3% on the previous year; the hotel division contributed €4.8 billion to the total, a fall of 3.3% on 2002. Neither the upscale nor the economy hotels in Europe could prevent their occupancy from slipping, which meant that RevPAR at the upscale and midscale hotels fell 4.7% and by 2.1% at the economy hotels. Nevertheless, Accor saw signs of recovery in the fourth quarter, and the company holds to its belief in full year pre-tax profit of €500 million.

Sunterra Creams Off Some Thurnham Assets Return to Headlines
The vacation ownership company the Sunterra Corporation is reported to have paid, through its Sunterra Europe subsidiary, some £2 million for assets in the UK belonging to the Thurnham Leisure Group. The purchase of Thurnham Hall, near Lancaster, the Cromer Country Club on the north Norfolk coast, and Club Britannia on the south coast in Eastbourne adds a total of 149 time-share units to Sunterra's UK portfolio. All three properties will take the Sunterra brand.

On The Beach With Kokache Return to Headlines
Kuwaiti firm Process Plant Construction & Contracting has taken Lebanon's Kokache by the hand and led it to the beach at Messilah, where the two will build a 308-room, five-star hotel and 78 serviced apartments. Buckets and spades will also be in evidence in the emirate of Dubai after Abu Dhabi National Hotels signed an agreement with Estithmaar to have a 450-room hotel at the Jumeirah Beach Residence development. Elsewhere in the region, the island of Muharraq has welcomed the 106-room Mövenpick Hotel Bahrain as its very first hotel.

Liverpool Vision Seeing Five Stars Return to Headlines
According to Liverpool Vision, the company behind the redevelopment of the Kings Dock in the city, a number of companies are vying to build what would be Liverpool's first five-star hotel. One of the bidders is said to be willing if a casino can be included. In nearby Wrexham, north Wales, the local council is in talks aimed at reheating plans for a multimillion pound hotel and conference centre at Wrexham Technology Park. No more talk, just action from late January onwards down in Stevenage in Hertfordshire. Speymill, the leisure and hotel division of The Wigmore Group, has secured a £1.2 million contract from Closegate Hotel Developments (Stevenage) to build the shell of a 115-room Premier Lodge. £1.2 Million is the guide price on the Menzies Royal Hotel in Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire. Menzies Hotels has put the 33-room, three-star property on the market as it is looking to dispose of non-core businesses and concentrate on the four-star market.

Sir Rocco Will Remember Where He Was When Kennedy Was Built Return to Headlines
Germany will be served a double helping of Rocco Forte Hotels in 2006. Sir Rocco Forte himself was in Frankfurt to see the foundation stone for one of the hotels laid; the Fay Group will be laying many more stones over the coming months to transform a villa on the Kennedyallee into the 166-room Villa Kennedy at a cost of €70 million. The second hotel goes to Berlin, where it is the duty of Hochtief Projektentwicklung to create the €71 million 146-room Hotel de Rome from a building on Bebelplatz once occupied by the Central Bank of the former East Germany. Both hotels will be owned by CCG, the property arm of Commerzbank.

Did Hotel Dvin Go For A Song? Return to Headlines
According to a report from the region, the Hotel Dvin in the Armenian capital Yerevan has been acquired for an undisclosed sum by the Russian singer Iosif Kobzon. Mr Kobzon will renovate the 240-room property and raise it to five-star status. The Lithuanian capital Vilnius now has one of the largest conference venues in Europe with the opening of a 10,000 m² convention centre at the Le Meridien Villon Resort. Plans for building work are forming in the mind of Slovenian spa operator Terme Čatež, which would apparently like a resort featuring several hotels on the Adriatic island of Pag. Also keen to get the scaffold up is Turkey's Akfen Holding, which is coveting the contract to build a US$25 million five-star hotel and casino in the Bulgarian capital Sofia.

Absolute Share Price Performance Over the Past Week 22/01/04-29/01/04

Hilton Group - Lehman Brothers last week placed an 'Underweight' rating on the stock.

InterContinental Hotels Group - The company partially reversed the loss of the previous week after Morgan Stanley raised its rating from 'Underweight' to 'Equal-weight'.

Accor - UBS maintained a 'Buy' rating, Deutsche Bank its 'Hold' rating.