HVS EMEA Hospitality Newsletter – Week Ending 27 April 2012

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

Britannia Buys Two Hotels From De Vere

Britannia Hotels has exchanged contracts with De Vere Group for the purchase of two hotels in the UK for approximately £20 million. Britannia has acquired the 140-room Royal Bath which dating from June 1838 is the oldest hotel in the seaside town of Bournemouth, on England’s south coast, and the 192-room De Vere Daresbury Park in Warrington, northwest England. The deal brings Britannia’s portfolio of hotels to 41 across the UK; the group has purchased five hotels since the beginning of the year. De Vere is also in the process of selling another two properties in order to fund expansion of its Village Hotels brand: the 119-room University Arms in Cambridge is under offer to an exclusive bidder and negotiations are taking place for the 173-room Grand Harbour in Southampton.

Four Q Hotels For Sale

Q Hotels has put four of its properties in England on the market for a total of £55-£60 million: the 54-room Aldwark Manor Golf & Spa Hotel near the city of York, the 100-room Bridgewood Manor in the southeast town of Chatham, the 102-room Stratford Hotel in Shakespeare’s birthplace Stratford-upon-Avon and the historic 146-room Park Royal Hotel near the northwest town of Warrington. The deadline for bids, on either a group or individual asset basis, is midday on 11 May 2012. The sale will reduce Q Hotels’ portfolio of hotels across the UK to 17. “We are tidying up the estate with a view to refinancing the company, hopefully later this year,” said Michael Purtill, the group’s managing director. Q Hotels currently has planning permission to extend 13 of its properties with 627 extra rooms overall; the planned financial restructure will enable it to carry out this work.

Jumeirah Makes Its Debut On Majorca

Dubai-based Jumeirah Group has opened its first resort property in Europe: the Jumeirah Port Soller Hotel & Spa. Comprising 11 low-rise buildings, the 120-unit resort is in the bay of Soller on the northwest coast of the Spanish island of Majorca. Jumeirah now has a presence in five countries across Europe (Turkey, Germany, the UK, Spain and Italy).

New UK Hotel Company Roars Into Life

Earlier this month, Spanish company Barceló Group agreed to pay a penalty fee of £20.25 million after it pulled out of an agreement early to operate 20 hotels across the UK. The hotels’ owner, London-based Puma Hotels, has now resumed operation of the four-star properties, with assistance from independent hotel management firm Chardon Management, and relaunched them on the market under its new group, Puma Hotels’ Collection. “In such an exciting year for British tourism, we are delighted to have successfully launched new British hotel group Puma Hotels’ Collection, following the successful handover from Barceló UK,” said Jane Rawlinson, the group’s head of marketing and e-commerce. “The new brand will focus on the unique characteristics and location of each hotel, whether through local cuisine, the grounds (particularly in the case of the flagship countryside properties), or the nearby facilities and attractions,” she added.

Hilton Number Four For Rome

Hilton Worldwide has opened its fourth hotel in Rome, Italy, and its second Hilton Garden Inn property in the city. The former Claridge Hotel in Parioli, Rome’s financial and diplomatic district, has been rebranded as the 93-room Hilton Garden Inn Rome Claridge.

NH Hoteles Completes Debt Refinance

NH Hoteles SA this week announced the signing of an agreement with creditors to refinance €730 million of debt. The agreement was signed by the 33 banks holding 100% of the debt to be refinanced, encompassing the balance outstanding under a syndicated loan arranged in August 2007 (€455 million) as well as virtually all of the group's credit facilities (€275 million). NH also said it has agreed the terms of the refinancing of its €75 million debt in Italy, bringing the total amount of debt being refinanced to more than €800 million.

Take Shelter In Marseilles

After making its debut in Paris, chic budget brand Mama Shelter has opened hotel number two, the 127-room Mama Shelter Marseille, in the city of Marseilles on France’s southeast coast. French company Mama Shelter was created by the Trigano family (the cofounders of Club Med) and French philosopher Cyril Aouizerate. The hotels were designed by Philippe Starck. Another Mama Shelter is planned for Lyon, in southeast central France.

Hoylake Gets A Holiday Inn Express

InterContinental Hotels Group has opened its first Holiday Inn Express property on the Wirral peninsula, near the city of Liverpool, in northwest England. The 56-room Holiday Inn Express Liverpool-Hoylake was developed on the site of the former Kings Gap hotel and is part of Sanguine Hospitality’s £5.5 million mixed-use redevelopment scheme, which includes a Marco Pierre White restaurant, in the seaside town of Hoylake. Sanguine own and operate the hotel, in addition to its recently opened Indigo hotel in Liverpool.

What Are You Doing In May?

The place to be this May is the 2012 Boutique Hotel Summit, which takes place on the 21-22 May at Altitude London. An article by HVS London on the boutique hotel sector forecast that London could see the number of design-led hotels double by 2013, adding more than 2,500 rooms to the market. Come along to Europe’s only b2b boutique hotel conference to learn from the experts and discover what makes this vibrant sector tick. Speakers at this year’s event include HVS London’s managing director, Russell Kett, who will be moderating a panel called What's now? What's new? What's next? The boutique hotel of the future. Russell and his panellists Chris Boulton, chief executive of yoo, and Mark Jones, senior director of hotel development EMEA at Worldhotels, will be discussing what the next 24 months hold for the boutique hotel sector. Tim Smith, director of valuations at HVS London, will be co-presenting a talk on the results of a European boutique hotel market research paper. For more information or to purchase a ticket visit www.boutiquehotelsummit.com.

Three New Starwood Hotels For Dubai

Starwood Hotels and Resorts has signed an agreement with Dubai-based Al Habtoor Group that will see it open three new hotels in Dubai and mark the debut of its St. Regis and W brands in the emirate. The 241-room St. Regis Dubai, the 384-room W Dubai – Sheikh Zayed Road and the 1,050-room Westin Dubai – Sheikh Zayed Road will be part of the US$1.4 billion, 1 million ft² Habtoor Palace complex. The three hotels are expected to open within months of each other in 2017.

A Regency For Riyadh

Hyatt International has signed a management agreement with Mohammed A. Al-Swailem Co. for Commercial Investment for a new hotel in Saudi Arabia. The Hyatt Regency Riyadh is expected to open in the country’s capital during the last quarter of 2013. The 257-room hotel will be part of the 32-storey Al-Swailem Tower mixed-use development. Hyatt currently has one hotel in operation in Saudi Arabia and seven in development (two of which are in Riyadh).

Steigenberger To Take To The Water

Frankfurt-based Steigenberger Hotel Group has announced that it is branching out into cruise ships. As of October 2012, the German group will operate three cruise ships in Egypt with 70 to 80 cabins each. The Steigenberger Minerva and the Steigenberger Legacy will both operate on the River Nile between Luxor and Aswan and the Omar El Khayam will operate on Lake Nasser between Aswan and Abu Simbe. Steigenberger will run the ships in cooperation with Cairo-based cruise ship operator Travcotels.

Whitbread Reports A Double-Figure Rise In Revenue

Whitbread recorded a rise in total revenue of 11.2%, to £1.8 billion, for the past financial year to 1 March 2012. Underlying profit before tax rose by 11.3% to £320 million. Sales for the group’s Premier Inn brand grew by 8.3%. A total of 4,055 new-build hotel rooms opened during the past year, bringing the group’s portfolio in the UK and Ireland to 47,429 rooms, with a pipeline of 10,500 rooms. “Whitbread has delivered another good set of results with both the full year earnings and dividends growing by 15%. Our focus on building strong brands and meeting the needs of our customers has enabled us to perform well in tough market conditions giving us the confidence to continue to expand in line with our ambitious growth plans,” said the group’s chairman, Anthony Habgood.

Revenue Rises 7.4% At Rezidor

Rezidor Hotel Group has reported a rise in revenue of 7.4% to €206.9 million in the first quarter of 2012. EBITDAR was €58.4 million, an increase of approximately 11% on the same period in 2011. Like-for-like RevPAR increased by 5.6%. Eastern Europe was a strong performer in terms of RevPAR with an increase of 12.2%, predominantly driven by a higher occupancy. “As outlined in our Route 2015 strategy, we remain focused on improving profitability, both in absolute terms and relative to the industry,” said Kurt Ritter, Rezidor’s chief executive officer. “In the first quarter, we opened four hotels with close to 1,000 rooms, all located in the emerging markets of Eastern Europe and Africa. We contracted six new hotels, with over 1,400 rooms, all without financial commitments,” he added.

Starwood Nets More Income In The First Quarter Of 2012

Starwood Hotels and Resorts has reported a net income of US$128 million (US$0.65 per share) for the first quarter of 2012, a huge 357% increase on the US$28 million (US$0.14 per share) recorded for the same period in 2011. Adjusted EBITDA grew by 42.8% on 2011 to US$297 million and management fees, franchise fees and other income increased by 13.6% on 2011. For the group’s hotels in Europe, RevPAR and average rate fell by 1.9% and 3.5%, respectively, during the first three months of 2012 but occupancy for the quarter rose by 1.0%. Average rate for hotels in the Middle East and Africa fell by 2.6%, but RevPAR and occupancy in the region grew by 2.3% and 3.1%, respectively. During the first quarter of the year, Starwood signed 32 hotel management and franchise contracts (for approximately 9,000 rooms) and opened 18 hotels and resorts (approximately 4,500 rooms). “Seemingly unstoppable demographic and economic trends are fuelling global growth in demand for high-end travel,” said Frits van Paasschen, Starwood’s chief executive officer.

Gladen’s Tidings

The news from Spain by Esther Gladen, Business & Market Intelligence Analyst, Madrid. Starwood enters the Madrid market: the five-star Sheraton Madrid Mirasierra Hotel & Spa has opened in the residential area of Mirasierra, 15 minutes away from the airport, the IFEMA Expo Center and Madrid’s financial centre. This hotel has 180 rooms and 1,300 m² of meeting space. Accor incorporates two hotels in Lleida: the ibis Lleida and the ibis budget Lleida, both operating under franchise agreements, have 76 and 79 rooms, respectively. Historic building on Madrid´s Plaza Mayor might be converted into a hotel: the local government of Madrid has already taken steps to approve the conversion of a protected building on Plaza Mayor into a hotel. Evenia Hotels to open a boutique hotel in Greater Madrid: the Evena Alcalá Boutique Hotel in Alcalá de Henares is housed in a refurbished medieval building which has kept its historic façade. The property has 23 rooms and is scheduled to open in June. Former AC Diplomatic in Barcelona rebranded to Renaissance: the former AC Diplomatic by Marriott has been refurbished and rebranded as the Renaissance Barcelona. The hotel, which has 211 rooms and 500 m² of meeting space, aims to upgrade to five stars in the future.

Absolute Share Price Performance Over the Past Week – 19-26 April 2012

NH Hoteles – NH rose 2.3% on average volume for a second consecutive day, a two-day rise of 2.6%.

Accor – AlphaValue reiterated its "buy" rating for Accor and gave it a share price target of €30.

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) – JPMorgan Cazenove raised IHG's share price target to 1700p from 1585p.

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, President, EMEA – 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