HVS EMEA Hospitality Enews - Week Ending 24 August 2007

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

Mirax Group Enters Turkey Through The Sungate

Mirax Group has completed its purchase of the Sungate Port Royal Hotel. The Russian conglomerate paid Turkish firm Cengiz Group US$340 million for the 1,095-room complex, which covers 25 hectares of the shoreline in the port of Antalya in southwestern Turkey. Renovation work will begin next month. Mirax intends its new acquisition to be the first link in a chain of luxury hotels that the company wants to establish in Europe and North Africa. Greece, Montenegro and Tunisia are the early candidates to take the properties.

Orchid Brings Czech Sheraton Into Flower

If you know where to look it is possible to find wild orchids in the Czech Republic. You can find Orchid Investment in the country too. It is not wild; on the contrary, the company is positively blissful after attracting Starwood Hotels & Resorts with a management contract. The petals of the Golden Gate Hotel & Suites curled at the beginning of July but the 160-room property will bloom again in autumn 2008, after extensive renovation, as the Sheraton Prague Charles Square: the first example of the Sheraton species in the country. A Sheraton grows in the Republic of Ireland already – take a look in Cork. Now a seed has landed in the centre of the country, where it will sprout in spring 2008 as the Sheraton Athlone. The 166-room hotel will form part of Irish property company Charleen’s €100 million redevelopment of the centre of the town of Athlone.

Hungary For Hilton A Fourth Time

Hilton Hotels Corporation (HHC) has a third hotel in Budapest and its fourth in total in Hungary. The newcomer, which will settle into a mixed-use development in the Budaörs district of the city, is the Hilton Residence Buda Hills Budapest. The property will throw open the doors to its 120 apartments in early 2010. HHC signed the management contract on the long-stay apartment property with Hungarian firm Rupphegyi.

JD Capital Sees Aman About A Job

Amanresorts has been in Amman to meet the main man – Samir Al-Rifai, the chief executive of Jordan Dubai Capital (JD Capital) – and to sign with him a memorandum of understanding. The MoU gives the Singaporean firm the opportunity to work with JD Capital, an investment vehicle affiliated to Dubai International Capital, in the development of luxury resorts and hotels in certain areas of Jordan. Amanresorts’ portfolio does not as yet embrace the Middle East.

Red Cow Fits Dublin; Fitzwilliam Fits Belfast

A sighting of a red cow on entering Dublin is entirely normal (the Red Cow Moran Hotel, that is: anything else, consult an optician). And if on subsequent sightings you see this red cow expanding before your eyes, there is no need to blame that extra pre-lunch pint of Guinness. The four-star property is getting a 310-room extension, costing a reported €120 million, that at 17 storeys will be the tallest hotel in the Republic of Ireland. No need to blame strong waters either when you do a double take on leaving Dublin to enter Belfast. ‘Ere, you might think, that five-star hotel I see rising before me looks just like the Fitzwilliam Hotel in the city I’ve recently left. And you would be correct; for the 131-room property that is to open in February 2009 on a site owned by Graffan Properties will take the Fitzwilliam name, adopt the image of its southern sister and share the same manager in Hotel Partners.

Eurotrade Rustles Up Another German Hotel For Golden Tulip

Earlier this summer Israeli firm Eurotrade Real Estate International and Golden Tulip Hospitality (GTH) entered into an agreement whereby Eurotrade would acquire hotels in Europe, the USA and Asia and GTH would operate them. The partnership is aiming to have a portfolio of around 25 hotels within the next three years. Germany has been the initial focus of the shopping spree, Eurotrade’s latest purchase, for €2.1 million, being a 64-room hotel in Barsinghausen, near the northern city of Hanover. Earlier acquisitions have included two 84-room, four-star hotels: one in Bad Reichenhall (bought for €4.25 million) and the other, bought for €4.45 million, in Rüsselsheim, near Frankfurt airport.

Rezidor In Sheffield Wednesday Last

Q: When is the Hotel Bristol in Sheffield not the Hotel Bristol? A: From this November, when the 111-room property becomes the Park Inn Sheffield. Rezidor Hotel Group took operational control of the Hotel Bristol on 15 August. Meanwhile, up in the far northwest of England, Kingmoor Park Properties has been granted permission to give its home city of Carlisle its first four-star hotel. The 130-room property will be built at the Kingmoor Park development.

Quintain Continues To Make Wembley Its Fortress

Quintain Estates and Development has control of 72 acres of land surrounding Wembley Stadium in northwest London. The latest subproject in its transformation of this land for which Quintain has secured planning permission is the construction of a ten-storey mixed-use building next to Wembley Arena. With an area of some 57,000 m² the property will house, among other facilities, a 441-room Hilton hotel. Work on the project, which has an estimated gross development value of £230 million, is set to begin later this year and is scheduled to finish in summer 2010.

Campbell's Said To Be Keen On Souped-Up Resort

And coming down the catwalk now in the Kenyan coastal resort of Malindi is Naomi Campbell. Ms Campbell, looking a million dollars and reportedly looking to spend millions more on a tourist resort, has hanging from her arm there a sumptuously rich Italian accessory – the Flavio Briatore. Supermodel Campbell and Briatore, the managing director of the Renault Formula One team, are said to be interested in building a ‘six-star’ hotel – The Billionaires Resort – in Malindi. That hotel might target only the wealthy but guests with less gold will surely find a welcome at the Orchid Gold Reef hotel, which is currently under development in the city of Johannesburg in South Africa. The 159-room property, which should be in operation by the end of 2009, will be a first hotel in the country for the Indian firm Concept Hospitality.

Have Pod, Will Travel

Living in a pod is nothing new: just ask any pea, or any guest emerging from one of those newfangled Qbic hotels, the first of which popped up in Amsterdam recently. However, the pods cultivated by Travelodge offer something new – their mobility. Travelpod is in essence a 37 m³ polycarbonate box: the kind of thing that David Blaine would be only too ready to tow into his back garden, though he might eschew the box’s features such as a flat screen television and luxury soft furnishings. Suspend yours from a crane above the Thames or simply haul it into your favourite meadow: that’s the beauty of Travelpod.

The International Hotel Conference: Drier Than Glastonbury

The International Hotel Conference (www.internationalhotelconference.com click here) promises to be a great gig. One hundred speakers: 1 million watts of knowledge. Among those taking the stage at the Rome Cavalieri Hilton will be the well-known HVS duo – president Steve Rushmore and Russell Kett, the managing director of the London office. Steve has a 15-minute solo spot on 19 October, the closing day of the three-day festival, when he will perform “Global Trends that Impact Hotel Investments”. Listen out the previous day for Russell’s rich tenor as he presides over a panel taking a comprehensive look at economic indicators and hotel trends.

Absolute Share Price Performance Over the Past Week 16-23 August 2007

Whitbread - Evolution Securities raised its rating from 'Add' to 'Buy'.

Accor - Kepler Equities upgraded its rating from 'Hold' to 'Buy'.

InterContinental Hotels Group - Rumours on the market of bid interest from Starwood Hotels stirred the share price.

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 Directorrkett@hvs.com
Charles Human, Managing Dir., HVS HWEchuman@hvshwe.com
Dominique Bourdais, Directordbourdais@hvs.com
Bernard Forster, Directorbforster@hvs.com
Karen Smith, Directorksmith@hvs.com
Marc Finney, Directormfinney@hvs.com
Christopher Mumford, Managing Dir., Executive Searchcmumford@hvs.com
Philip Bacon, Managing Dir. EMEA & Asia, HVS Shared Ownership Servicespbacon@hvs.com
Adrian Jones, EMEA Hospitality Enews Authorajones@hvs.com