Featured in this EMEA Hospitality Newsletter - Week Ending 13 January 2006
Hellenic Casinos To Sell Its Stake In Hyatt Regency Hotels & Tourism
Equest's Quest Begins With A Hotel Purchase In Sofia
Reval Revels In Riga
Saudi Arabia Awaits The Arrival Of King Abdullah Economic City
New Board Of Directors At Accor
Zleep Dreams Of 2007
Travelodge Headlines At Wembley

Hellenic Casinos To Sell Its Stake In Hyatt Regency Hotels & Tourism
Hellenic Casinos Company has agreed to sell its majority holding in Hyatt Regency Hotels & Tourism (Hellas) (HRHT). Funds advised by private equity firm BC Partners will be paying €11 a share for the 51.57% stake, a price that one source says values the deal at €476.3 million. If the European Commission approves the transaction, then the new owners will reportedly be obliged to purchase the remaining shares. HRHT operates two casinos in Greece and another in the Albanian capital Tirana. The company also owns Hyatt International’s solitary hotel in Greece: the 152-room Hyatt Regency Thessaloniki.

Equest's Quest Begins With A Hotel Purchase In Sofia Return to Headlines
Equest Balkan Properties (EBP) has spent some €10 million of the €200 million it raised by floating on the Alternative Investment Market last month on the 131-room, three-star Serdika Hotel in the Bulgarian capital Sofia. The company is already in talks with parties interested in operating the hotel after the lease with the present holder expires in May. EBP, which is advised in its purchases by Equest Partners, was established to invest in all manner of properties in Southeast Europe, with Bulgaria and Romania the countries of principal interest. And so that Romania would not feel left out in the company’s first round of acquisitions, EBP paid €4.75 million for a 3,150 m² office building in the Domenii district of Bucharest.

Reval Revels In Riga Return to Headlines
Reval Hotels of Estonia already has two hotels in the Latvian capital Riga, and now it wants a third. Linstow, Reval’s Norwegian owner, has commissioned construction firm Skonto Būve to build a 230-room property that should be open in spring 2007. The €30 million hotel will stand opposite Vermanes Park in the heart of the city centre.

Saudi Arabia Awaits The Arrival Of King Abdullah Economic City Return to Headlines
From your vantage point in the Saudi Arabian city of Rābigh watch as Emaar Properties gradually transforms that 55 million m² of land in front of you into King Abdullah Economic City. This US$26.6 billion mixed-use project, which is said to be the single biggest investment made in Saudi Arabia by the private sector, will be served by its own port on the Red Sea. A collection of waterfront hotels and boutique residences sharing among them 3,500 rooms will be there to welcome the sailors ashore.

New Board Of Directors At Accor Return to Headlines
Accor’s shareholders emerged from their meeting on 9 January having approved all of the proposals laid before them by their company last autumn. They agreed to the replacement of the supervisory board and the management board with a board of directors. The new board is made up of 17 people, one of whom is Gilles Pélisson, who was confirmed in the role of Accor’s new chief executive.

Zleep Dreams Of 2007 Return to Headlines
Zleep Hotels, the Danish budget hotel chain, will stir the citizens of Copenhagen from slumber next year by opening its third hotel in the capital – the 130-room Zleep Ballerup Hotel – on 1 April. Danes in the city of Aalborg or living close to Billund airport who sleep, perchance to dream of Zleep Hotels, will awake to find their dreams reality in the shape of the 80-room Zleep Hotel Aalborg (opening on 1 November 2007) and the Zleep Hotel Billund.

Travelodge Headlines At Wembley Return to Headlines
Fans of Travelodge are celebrating the company’s appearance at Wembley. Travelodge’s colours have replaced those of Express by Holiday Inn at a 168-bed hotel owned by Quintain Estates and Development. Having established its thirteenth hotel in London, Travelodge boarded the team bus for a trip north to the city of Peterborough. The local press saw them cheered through the streets by the construction workers who are to build a 79-room Travelodge costing a reported £4 million. The hotel is due to open in November.

Absolute Share Price Performance Over the Past Week 05/01/06-12/01/06

Accor - Citigroup raised its target price from €50 to €60 and kept its 'Buy' rating.

Whitbread - Numis Securities has a 'Buy' rating on the stock and a target price of 1,200p.

NH Hoteles - The share price of many Spanish hotel companies fell on reports that shareholders in Occidental Hoteles had decided against a proposed sale of their company to the Carlyle Group.