Which Hotels Are Most Sought After By The Socimis?

22 June 2016 – Hosteltur.com

Javier Arús, Head of Investments at Hispania, spoke at a conference last week entitled “Spain: Hotspot for international hotel investment”, organised by the Real Estate Alumni Club of Instituto de Empresa at the IE Business School.

There, he highlighted that the number of operations involving asset repositionings are on the rise, such Hispania’s acquisition of the Ibizan hotel chain San Miguel last week for €32 million. That deal involved the purchase of three mid-range hotels in Ibiza, where significant investments will be made to reposition the properties and convert them into premium assets. This type of operation, “with hotels in very attractive destinations and excellent locations, allows us to develop new products, almost from scratch, and obtain very significant resturns on our investments”, said Arús.

The Head of Investments at Hispania also spoke about the contractual relationships that exist between the Socimi and the operators of the hotels it has acquired to date. He stressed his firm’s preference for mixed lease contracts, which guarantee a minimum level of rental income and offer a variable rental income component to complement the fixed revenue stream. (…).

Meliá’s commitment

Meanwhile, Ángel Luis Rodríguez, Vice-President of Portfolio Management at Meliá Hotels International confirmed that the hotel chain is not currently entertaining the possibility of structuring its assets under a Socimi framework. Rather, the firm has committed itself to the creation of a very specialised real estate manager within the existing company structure, without any need to legally separate the hotel manager’s assets. Moreover, it is focusing its efforts on investing in technology and in core assets. 80% of the hotels in its portfolio operate under management frameworks.

Rodríguez agrees with Javier Arús that there are excellent opportunities to be had from “measured” repositioning of vacation hotel assets. By way of example, he described Meliá’s Calviá Beach project and highlighted the increase in value and quality that it has represented for a tourist destination such as Magaluf. There, the chain, which operates 3,200 rooms, has adopted a deliberate strategy that has allowed it to increase RevPar (revenues per available room) in the area by between 70-80% in a short period of time and with a very limited Capex investment.

Its brand-focused strategy is allowing the company to “enjoy a ‘virtuous circle’: brand strategy + investment in repositioning = increase in ARR (average room rate) and RevPar – Greater client satisfaction and loyalty – Increase in asset value – Better segmentation of customers – Higher direct sales – Higher Returns”.

The three speakers (Javier Faus, President of Meridia Capital also spoke), all experts in the hotel sector, agree that Spain may be able to maintain the level of growth in the hotel sector, if its supply is renewed and updated to reflect the expectations of international tourists, who are genuinely very fond of our country. They also highlight the importance of professionalising the operation of assets and investing in technology to deepen client knowledge and loyalty.

Original story: Hosteltur.com

Translation: Carmel Drake

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