HVS EMEA Hospitality Newsletter – Week Ending 6 January 2011

The latest hospitality news from Europe, the Middle East and Africa

Meliá Sells A Little Bit Of Sunshine In Tenerife

Meliá Hotels International has reportedly sold the Sol Tenerife, in the Canary Islands, for €49 million to a company in which it holds a 50% share. The sale of the 522-room hotel will reap capital gains of €16 million for the group, which it will use to reduce its debt. Meliá will continue to manage the hotel. In a statement to the Spanish National Securities Commission, the group said that the deal reflects a shift in its business model away from capital-intensive projects toward a greater focus on management contracts and joint ventures in order to diversify risk.

A New Rezidor Hotel For Lucky Lübeck

Rezidor Hotel Group has opened its third hotel in the north German city of Lübeck: the 197-room Park Inn by Radisson Lübeck, which previously operated as the Mövenpick Hotel Lübeck. Rezidor has a presence in 36 cities across Germany.

Could It Be Turkish Delight For Jumeirah?

It is rumoured that Dubai-based Jumeirah Group is close to signing a management agreement with Turkish business woman and entrepreneur Demet Sabanci Çetindogan for its first hotel in Turkey: the Pera Palace Hotel in Istanbul, which was acquired by Ms Çetindogan at the end of last year. The 115-room property is Turkey’s oldest hotel; it opened in 1895 to provide luxury accommodation to travellers after the city became the last stop on the legendary Orient Express. In April 2008, the hotel closed for a US$30 million restoration project and reopened in September 2010.

Apex Number Three For London

Apex Hotels plans to open its third hotel in London on 1 April 2012: the 184-room Apex Temple Court, on the city’s famous Fleet Street. The Edinburgh-based group currently operates seven hotels across the UK. A total of £60 million is being invested in the new property, which will be housed in a building dating from the 12th century that Apex purchased from professional law association the Honourable Society of the Inner Temple.

Birmingham’s Grand To Be Returned To Glory

In Birmingham, in the UK, independent property company Hortons plans to bring back to life one of the city’s most iconic hotels. After opening it doors to the public in 1875, the Grand Hotel, on Colmore Row, has closed and reopened several times. It has been shut now for almost a decade, but Hortons, the building’s owner, has submitted plans to Birmingham City Council to restore the Grade II-listed property and transform it into a 152-room five-star hotel. If planning permission is received, it is reported that the hotel could be up and running by Christmas 2013.

Another Holiday In The UAE For IHG

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has signed a management agreement with Mohamed Omar Bin Haider Group (MOBH Group) for its fourth Holiday Inn property in the UAE (three in Dubai and one in Sharjah). The 210-room Excelsior Creek Hotel has been rebranded as the Holiday Inn Bur Dubai – Embassy District. MOBH Group also owns two other Holiday Inn hotels in the UAE. “We believe in the strength of the Holiday Inn brand so IHG was a natural choice as a management company when we made the decision to rebrand this hotel,” said MOBH Group’s deputy chairman, Omar Mohamed Bin Haider.

Rotana’s New Year’s Resolution

Hotel management firm Rotana has announced that it will invest US$750 million in opening seven new hotels in 2012. This year will see the group make its debut in Bahrain and Jordan (with the 128-unit Majestic Arjaan by Rotana – Bahrain and the 400-suite Boulevard Arjaan by Rotana) and open its second hotel in Qatar. Four new properties are planned for the UAE. “Despite the generally gloomy global outlook, Rotana is proud to be growing and expanding. We believe our growth is supported by our commitment to keep evolving our products in line with travel trends and guest preferences, and one of the key areas for growth that we are currently addressing is the mid-tier market, for which we developed the Centro Hotels by Rotana brand,” said Selim El Zyr, Rotana’s president and chief executive officer.

The First Island In The World

The global credit crisis resulted in most of the work on Dubai’s offshore development The World coming to a standstill. However, one man, Indian entrepreneur Wakil Admed Azmi, took advantage of the drop in construction costs during the downturn and ploughed ahead with his World Island Beach Club, based on The World’s island of Lebanon. This week, his determination paid off as the club became the first island on the The World to open to the public. Work on Mr Azmi’s project is reported to have reached AED60 million (US$16.3 million).

The Middle East’s First Millennium Plaza

Millennium and Copthorne recently opened its first Millennium Plaza property in the Middle East: the 413-room Millennium Plaza Hotel Dubai, which is housed in a 65-storey tower opposite the Dubai International Finance Centre on Sheikh Zayed Road. This is the group’s fourth hotel in Dubai.

Gladen’s Tidings

The news from Spain by Esther Gladen, Business & Market Intelligence Analyst, HVS Madrid. Catalonia takes a lease on the Reina Victoria in Ronda (Málaga): the refurbishment of the former Husa property will cost around €6 million and the hotel is scheduled to reopen next summer.

Absolute Share Price Performance Over the Past Week – 30 December 2011-5 January 2012

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) – IHG strengthened above its Average Moving Price.

Meliá Hotels International – Meliá remained unchanged on firm volume.

NH Hoteles – NH dropped 1.5% on high volatility.

For the latest in the hospitality industry, please visit: http://www.hvs.com. You are also welcome to contact the following personnel.

Russell Kett, Managing Director – HVS London (@russellkett)rkett@hvs.com
Charles Human, Managing Director – HVS Hodges Ward Elliottchuman@hvshwe.com
Tim Smith, Director – HVS Londontsmith@hvs.com
Chris Martin, Director – HVS Hodges Ward Elliottcmartin@hvshwe.com
Demetris Spanos, Managing Director – HVS Athensdspanos@hvs.com
Hala Matar Choufany, Managing Director – HVS Dubaihchoufany@hvs.com
Christopher Mumford, Managing Director – HVS Executive Search (@ChrisMumford)cmumford@hvs.com
Philip Bacon, Managing Director – HVS Madrid and Managing Director, EMEA & Asia – HVS Shared Ownership Servicespbacon@hvs.com
Saurabh Chawla, Director – HVS Asset Management and Strategic Advisoryschawla@hvs.com
Louise Fury, Senior Editor and EMEA Hospitality Newsletter Author – HVS Londonlfury@hvs.com