4 January 2017 – Última Hora
The French business group Sermeta, led by Joseph Le Mer, has just acquired the centrally located and iconic Gran Hotel Sóller (on the island of Mallorca) for €10 million from the Sóller-based businessman Andreu Gelabert.
Gelabert confirmed that the completion of this operation will ensure the continuity of this luxury establishment, located just a stone’s throw from Plaza Constitució and the municipal market. He also reported that he will continue to be involved with the property as advisor to the new owner. According to Gelabert, “the good news is that all of the staff at the hotel will continue at the establishment, working for the new owner”.
It has long been rumoured in Sóller that the Gran Hotel may be sold and Andreu Gelabaert himself said just a few days ago that “offers had been received and were being considered”. On Monday, he confirmed that a deal had been reached, along with its price. “The new owners intend to acquire three more hotels on the island (of Mallorca)”, said the Sóller-based businessman “and expansion plans are in the pipeline for the Gran Hotel, but I cannot reveal any more details for the time being”. Even so, Gelabert reported that the property “will open for business on 10 February 2017, like it does every year”.
The Gran Hotel Sóller occupies a single historicist-style building – known as Can Cremat – whose façade was designed by the architect Joaquim María Pavía Birmingham. Built at the end of the 19th century, the property was originally a residential building and then used for industrial purposes until Josep Maria Vicens Casasnovas turned it into a B&B in the 1960s and then into Hotel Sóller.
Andreu Gelabert acquired the property in 2002 after it had been closed down for years. He undertook a comprehensive renovation to turn the building into the first five-star rated property in the area; it re-opened in 2004 with 38 rooms. Gelabert is a highly valued businessman in Sóller. In 2007, the Town Hall awarded him the Escut d’Or for his entrepreneurship and support for tourism and sport.
Original story: Última Hora (by Lluc García)
Translation: Carmel Drake