Featured in this EMEA Hospitality Newsletter - Week Ending 7 October 2005
HVS London – On The Move
Wenaasgruppen Acquires The Radisson SAS Royal In St Petersburg
A Star Born Under Two Stars Will Have A Five-Star Life
Jefferson Liberates The Moat House Nine
Kingdom Comes To Morocco; Four Seasons Will Follow
Nakheel Plays Its Trump Card
IHG, EHI and the DIC
More Muscle In Brussels For Pandox
Park Plaza's Own South Bank Show
Marriott Makes It Seven In Austria
Thistle To Make A Guoman Of The Tower

HVS London – On The Move
HVS International’s London office will be moving on 14 October. Our new address is 7-10 Chandos Street, Cavendish Square, London W1G 9DQ, United Kingdom. The first working day in our new premises will be Monday 17 October. Although telephone numbers and email addresses will remain unchanged, it should be noted that the new fax number is +44 20 7878 7799. It should also be noted that we are unlikely to have access to email between 14 October and 17 October.

Wenaasgruppen Acquires The Radisson SAS Royal In St Petersburg Return to Headlines
Norwegian real estate firm Wenaasgruppen is the new owner of the Radisson SAS Royal Hotel in the Russian city of St Petersburg. Delta Private Equity Partners, which in combination with SAS Investments held a 100% holding in the 164-room, five-star property did not disclose the sale price, although The St. Petersburg Times reported that the deal was worth around US$30 million. Rezidor SAS Hospitality will continue to operate the hotel. A transactions addict in St Petersburg would have been on a perpetual high this week; reports noted that Eurasia Hotels & Spas had paid unnamed investors an undisclosed sum for a controlling stake in the 1,000-room, three-star Hotel Sovetskaya.

A Star Born Under Two Stars Will Have A Five-Star Life Return to Headlines
A new hotel brand that has been launched by Horst Schulze may have two stars as its logo but it is on the five-star segment that it will shine; no surprise, perhaps, given that Mr Schulze, the CEO of West Paces Hotel Group, was once President and COO of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company. Capella Hotels & Resorts, which derives its name from a ‘double star’ that is the sixth brightest in the night sky, will be lighting up Mexico and Ireland initially, with the countries each receiving two Capella Resort & Spa properties. Those in Ireland will both occupy castles in Co. Cork and both will open in 2006: one of 106 rooms in Castlemartyr and one of 82 suites in Dunboy Castle, in Castletownbere.

Jefferson Liberates The Moat House Nine Return to Headlines
Queens Moat Houses announced in April that nine of its hotels in the UK were on sale and that they would come unencumbered by the Moat House brand or management. Those nine have now been acquired for an undisclosed sum by a partnership formed between Jefferson Hotels – a vehicle newly created by the Landesberg and Rosenberg families – and the owners of Galliard Homes. The new owners have signed a lease agreement with Rezidor SAS Hospitality, which is to operate all nine properties under the Park Inn brand. The hotels, which have a total of some 1,200 rooms, are in Bedford, Cardiff, Northampton, Nottingham, Telford, Watford and West Bromwich, and two towns in Essex: Harlow and Grays.

Kingdom Comes To Morocco; Four Seasons Will Follow Return to Headlines
Kingdom Hotel Investments (KHI), the European Hotel Corporation and Alliances Développement Immobilier are the team investing between them a total of US$116 million in the construction of a luxury hotel and resort in the city of Marrakech. The development will bring Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts to Morocco for the first time, where the company will be managing a 140-room hotel and 40 riads and villas. Morocco is new to KHI too, although the company already has plans for further investment in the country.

Nakheel Plays Its Trump Card Return to Headlines
Property developer Nakheel has enticed Donald Trump’s Trump Organization into making its first foray into real estate development in the Middle East. The first flexing of the pair’s exclusive deal will come with the construction of The Palm Trump International Hotel and Tower on one of Nakheel’s many exciting projects in the region – The Palm, Jumeirah in Dubai. The Trump Organization will manage each development and operate all hotels built.

IHG, EHI and the DIC Return to Headlines
It was in May 2004 that InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) revealed that its pleasure would be to see more than 20 Express by Holiday Inn hotels open in the Middle East by 2010. This week Dubai International Capital (DIC) announced that it was the key investor in Ishraq, the company that will handle the rights to the brand and be the future owner of the hotels in Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. Eleven other regional investors will be helping DIC meet the US$150 million cost of the project. The first property, which should be open by the end of 2006, will be built at the Knowledge Village in the emirate of Dubai. IHG noted in its statement last year that developments in the sixth member country of the Gulf Cooperation Council – Saudi Arabia – were to be led by the Saudi Real Estate Development Company.

More Muscle In Brussels For Pandox Return to Headlines
Pandox will be moving into the Mercure Royal Crown Brussels on 20 October. The Swedish hotel company has paid €18.3 million for the 314-room property, on which Accor will relinquish its management contract. Pandox will take over operational duties under its own management and will spend some €10 million over the next two to three years on the further development of the four-star hotel. HVS Hodges Ward Elliott acted as broker to the seller in the transaction.

Park Plaza's Own South Bank Show Return to Headlines
A salmon knows it has reached the Albert Embankment in London when it spies the Riverbank Park Plaza. Future generations making their way out to sea will have another two Park Plaza hotels on the south bank of the Thames to navigate by come 2010. Frogmore went a-courting recently with fellow property company Galliard by its side, and together the hotels’ owners wooed Park Plaza Hotels Europe with a long-term management agreement on each property. In 2008, the fish eye can gaze upon the 395-room County Hall Park Plaza and positively goggle in 2010 at the sheer scale of the Westminster Bridge Park Plaza. The hotel, which will have more than 930 guest rooms, will be one of the largest conference hotels seen in London for many a year, offering as it will facilities for upwards of 1,000 delegates.

Marriott Makes It Seven In Austria Return to Headlines
Marriott International’s seventh hotel in Austria, and its fourth in the capital Vienna, will be the Courtyard by Marriott Vienna Schönbrunn. VA Hotels has signed a franchise agreement on the 118-room property, which is set to open next spring. Over the border in Germany, Rezidor SAS Hospitality promised in July that the city of Düsseldorf would have a new hotel come September. And true to its word the company has delivered on schedule the 135-room Radisson SAS Media Harbour Hotel. Meanwhile, the citizens of Hanover could soon have a new hotel owner in their midst; Industrial Building, a subsidiary of Israeli firm Fishman Holdings, is said to be close to purchasing a four-star hotel (its identity seemingly as yet unknown to all but those involved in the deal) for a reported €24 million.

Thistle To Make A Guoman Of The Tower Return to Headlines
One year ago Thistle Hotels revealed that the freshly refurbished Cumberland Hotel in London had reopened and become the first property to wear its new de luxe brand – Guoman. The second hotel preparing to salute the flag is the Thistle Tower, also in London, which is said to be undergoing a £7 million refurbishment to prepare it for the event. Elsewhere in the capital, GuestInvest, the company which offers investors the opportunity to own individual rooms in a hotel, will from 2007 be able to provide a second property in addition to the 20-room Guesthouse West – this time one of 200 rooms near Paddington railway station. The Times reports that entrepreneur Vincent Tchenguiz is one of those helping to finance the £35 million development.

Absolute Share Price Performance Over the Past Week 29/09/05-06/10/05

De Vere Group - The share price responded to news that Man Group, a hedge fund specialist, had taken a 3.1% stake in the company.

Whitbread - Rumours of a takeover intrigued investors. Numis Securities raised its rating on the stock from 'Hold' to 'Buy' and set a target price of 1,200p.

InterContinental Hotels Group - Though UBS raised its rating from 'Neutral' to 'Buy', any potential effect this may have had was overwhelmed by the heavy losses of the FTSE 100 as it reacted to a downturn on Wall Street brought on by fears of a rise in inflation.