Swiss Life Buys a Hotel in Valencia from Grupo Senator for €24.5M

13 June 2019 – Expansión

The Swiss fund Swiss Life has purchased the Hotel Senator Parque Central in Valencia from Grupo Senator for €24.5 million in a sale and leaseback operation.

The 4-star hotel, which has 192 rooms, spans 12,851 m2 and is located in a central area of the Mediterranean city where a large urban park is planned once the nearby railway tracks have been moved underground.

Grupo Senator acquired the property from Sareb in 2017, which itself took ownership after the Valencian property developer that constructed it filed for bankruptcy in 2010.

Original story: Expansión (by Rebeca Arroyo)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Thomas Cook Buys a 252-Room Hotel in Gran Canaria

16 May 2019 – Hosteltur

Thomas Cook has purchased the Sunwing Arguineguin Hotel in Gran Canaria through its hotel investment vehicle, Thomas Cook Hotel Investments (TCHI). The 4-star establishment, which has 252 rooms, is located around 15km from Maspalomas on the south of the island.

TCHI was created in March 2018 to help Thomas Cook accelerate its aims of managing more of its own brand hotels and investing in opportunities arising in Greece, Spain and the Mediterranean. The fund now owns 9 properties, with plans to grow its portfolio to between 10 and 15 by 2021.

Original story: Hosteltur

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Ybarra y Compañía to Invest €7M in the Construction of a 105-Room Hotel in Sevilla

5 April 2019 – ABC Sevilla

Ybarra y Compañía is going to invest €7 million in the construction of a 4-star hotel in Sevilla, which will have a total surface area of 5,000 m2, comprising 4 storeys and 105 rooms.

The company has already submitted a request for the building permits for the establishment, which is going to be built on the corner of Avenida de la Palmera and Calle Cardenal Bueno Monreal, on the city’s golden mile.

The property developer plans to inaugurate the hotel in the Spring of 2021, ahead of the Easter and Feria celebrations, which attract thousands of tourists to the city each year.

Original story: ABC Sevilla (by María Jesús Pereira)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

RIU Will Open its Hotel in Edificio España in June with a 65% Occupancy Rate

21 February 2019 – Cinco Días

The work to renovate Edificio España is progressing towards its imminent completion after years of drama involving the historical skyscraper in Madrid’s Plaza de España, constructed between 1948 and 1953. The hotel chain Riu expects to conclude the renovation work in the spring and will inaugurate its hotel Riu Plaza España at the beginning of the summer, most likely in June. The Mallorcan chain expects to open with an occupancy rate of 65% for the first few months of operation, according to explanations provided by sources at the company.

The hotelier expects that half of the guests at Riu Plaza España will be business travellers and the rest tourists. The company chose the 4-star format for this establishment precisely to strengthen its business market, since many companies expressly prohibit their employees from staying in 5-star hotels.

Riu Plaza España is one of the company’s largest hotels, with 585 rooms and the first to operate under the Plaza brand in the city, focused on the urban market. Regarding the provenance of its guests, Riu expects 60% to come from overseas (…).

Original story: Cinco Días (by Alfonso Simón Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Bankinter’s Socimi Negotiates the Purchase of Hotel Meliá Valencia

18 February 2019 – Expansión

Atom wants to strengthen its portfolio with the acquisition of one of the main hotels in Valencia for €50 million.

Bankinter’s hotel Socimi, Atom, wants to strengthen its portfolio and add the Meliá Valencia (formerly the Hilton Valencia) to its list of assets. The property is one of the main hotels in the city, located on Avenida de las Cortes Valencianas, close to the Palacio de Congresos.

Atom, which made its debut on the Alternative Investment Market (MAB) in November, is holding negotiations with the fund Colony to purchase the 4-star hotel for around €50 million, according to explanations provided by market sources speaking to Expansión. Those same sources state that, although the negotiations are in an advanced stage, no agreement has yet been reached between the parties.

History

The hotel, located in a tower standing more than 110m tall, was officially inaugurated in February 2008 and has had several owners since then. The establishment, which has around 300 rooms and 21 meeting rooms, with the capacity to host up to 875 people, is managed by Meliá.

Colony purchased this asset along with some other Spanish hotels just a year ago from the investor group Continental Property Investment, controlled by the Lebanese businessman Boutros El-Khouri (…).

With this operation, Atom would increase its portfolio, which currently comprises 21 hotels and 5,232 rooms, with a gross value of €485 million. 82% of the hotels in its portfolio are 4-star properties and 60% are holiday establishments (…).

Original story: Expansión (by R. Arroyo, R. Sampedro & A.C. Álvarez)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Arum Group Invests Another €80M to Expand La Manga Club

20 November 2018 – Eje Prime

Arum Group is getting its wallet out to expand its resort in Murcia. The Spanish property developer, chaired by the magnate Jordi Robinat, is planning to invest more than €80 million in the upcoming expansion of La Manga Club, its residential complex located in the municipality of Cartagena, according to explanations provided by sources at the group speaking to Eje Prime.

The company is already processing a new partial plan to expand the resort by more than 48,000 m2, with the aim of developing new homes. Moreover, if the operation goes ahead, the group forecasts that the building work will begin between the end of next year and the beginning of 2020. The scheduled execution period is between three and four years.

Currently, La Manga Club has a surface area of 1.3 million m2, contains 2,300 homes, two 5- and 4-star hotels, three golf courses (one of which has 18 holes), thirty clay tennis courts, eight soccer fields and a cricket pitch.

With the majority of the residential assets now sold, Arum Group is developing the last one hundred homes, which will be primarily dedicated to international buyers. “English investors are the most common, although increasingly, we are closing more operations with Norwegian clients, as well as Belgians and people from other countries in the north of Europe”, explain sources at the company.

La Manga Club is the only project that the Arum Group has underway in the Region of Murcia. In fact, the property developer owned by Robinat purchased the complex from the Anglo-American cruise company, The Peninsular&Oriental Steam Navigation (P&O), in 2004 for €146 million.

Since then, the Spanish company, headquartered in Barcelona, has undertaken several expansions of the resort, which is one of the largest in southern Europe. The company owns three other residential projects currently underway in Spain, two in Cataluña and one in Tenerife.

The transformation of the Arum Group

The origins of the Arum Group date back to the 1990s, when Jordi Robinat, one of the people responsible for the launch and subsequent sale of the iconic Palace and Ritz hotels in Madrid, decided to set up on his own. He did so initially by creating the firm Med Resort before then formalising the expansion of the company in the Spanish real estate sector, under the brand Medgroup.

With that company, which at the time included George Soros and the former Goldman Sachs banker, Richard Perry, amongst its largest shareholders, Robinat introduced the tourist resort complex to the Spanish coast by integrating homes, hotels, golf courses, spa centres and commercial premises into the same complex.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Berta Seijo)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Port Aventura to Invest €40M in New 4-Star Hotel & Fairground Ride

23 May 2018 – Expansión

The Port Aventura theme park, owned by Investindustrial and KKR, is going to invest €40 million next year in the construction of a new themed four-star hotel in the Far West area and a new fairground ride – the first dark ride – in the Sésamo Aventura children’s area.

The hotel will absorb a budget of €25 million and will join the five other hotel establishments already in operation in the resort. The aim of Port Aventura is to exceed 5 million visitors this year thanks to the boost from Ferrari Land, which opened five new children’s rides yesterday, according to Efe.

Original story: Expansión

Translation: Carmel Drake

PSN Gestión Socimi Buys Hotel Soho Boutique in Salamanca for €3M

7 May 2018 – Tribuna Salamanca

PSN Gestión Socimi S.A, the listed real estate investment company tasked with managing the properties owned by the PSN Group that are destined to leasing, has acquired the Hotel Soho Boutique Salamanca for €2.9 million.

This establishment, which has a four-star rating and is located in a central building next to the Plaza Mayor and the central market of Salamanca capital, has a constructed surface area of almost 1,200 m2, spread over seven storeys and a patio area of 25 m2.

According to information provided by the PSN Group, the property has more than 20 bedrooms, as well as lounges, a bar, a dining room and an indoor car park, leased in the building opposite.

In this way, PSN Gestión Socimi S.A. has incorporated the hotel into its real estate portfolio, which already contained another complete building that is used as a hotel in the centre of Madrid, as well as several offices, commercial premises and parking spaces spread over 27 buildings located in 21 cities in Spain and Portugal, with a constructed surface area of more than 15,600 m2, according to the entity.

These properties owned by “the largest company of its kind promoted by an insurance company in the Spanish real estate market” are located in several cities such as Madrid, Sevilla, Valencia, Barcelona, Lisbon, Coimbra and Oporto, amongst others.

PSN Gestión Socimi S.A. started trading on the Alternative Investment Market (MAB) on 22 December 2017 with a global capitalisation of more than €28 million.

Its shares debuted with a reference price of €14.20 and are currently trading at €14.50, according to the company that has purchased the hotel in the centre of Salamanca.

Original story: Tribuna Salamanca

Translation: Carmel Drake

Balearic Government Doubles its Tourist Eco-Tax from 1 May 2018

3 May 2018 – Expansión

Tourists enjoying their holidays on the Balearic Islands awoke on Tuesday to news that isn’t going to completely ruin their fun, but which is certainly going to affect their wallets. The tax that tourists have to pay for each overnight stay on the islands, also known as the eco-tax, had doubled overnight. That was the result of the entry into force of the new tariffs for the Balearic Island Government’s Sustainable Tourism Tax. The increase has been criticised by hoteliers on the islands, which regard it “as frankly wrong, given that any kind of extraordinary tax reduces our competitiveness”, explains María José Aguiló, Executive Vice-President of the Hotel Business Federation of Mallorca (FEHM) in statements to this newspaper.

The government team led by Francina Armengol (PSOE) announced that this new tariff would enter into force from 1 May onwards. Specifically, during the high season, which runs from 1 May until 31 October, any tourist staying in a hotel ranked 4-stars or above will have to pay an eco-tax of €4 per night, which is twice as much as they had to pay during the same period last year (€2) and €3 more than the amount charged during the low season – from 1 November until 30 April.

One of the risks related to the rise is that, with the recovery of other markets in the Mediterranean Arc, such as Egypt and Turkey, the increase in the final cost of each stay will cause tourists to flee to other more competitive destinations.

Although the news is not new – the rise was announced in September last year – it has still surprised many tourists and critics alike, including hoteliers. By mid-morning yesterday, one tourist staying in a hotel in Palma had refused to pay the tax, claiming that he had not been informed about the doubling of the tariff and expressing his doubts over the use that would be made of the funds raised. Although the problem did not go any further – the hotel decided to bear the cost of the tax on this occasion – the situation clearly raises an important issue, relating to the information that is being offered.

Sources close to the Vice-President of the Balearic Government explain that communication efforts have been carried out in the media, as well as through tour operators and trade associations. Nevertheless, hoteliers are asking for a greater push. “Some customers book their trips directly and are unaware of the news”, explains Aguiló, who said that “more specific material” needs to be provided to inform people.

On the other hand, “customers are asking us what this money is being used for”, added Aguiló, which may lead to a reluctance to pay it. For now, they propose that the Government intensifies its communication effort in source markets.

Armengol’s Government expects to raise around €120 million this year through this tax, which will also be applied to tourists who arrive on cruise ships, regardless of how long they stay for – previously, it was only applied to visitors who stayed for more than 12 hours -. The aim, explain Government sources is “to offset tourist pressure and to conserve the eco-system and heritage, so that we can all still enjoy the islands in 10 years time” (…).

Original story: Expansión (by Inma Benedito)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Fergus Incorporates Hotel Club Bahamas (Ibiza) Into Its Portfolio

17 October 2017 – Hosteltur

Fergus Hotels has incorporated the 3-star Hotel Club Bahamas into its portfolio, which will operate from 2019 as a 4-star property under the name: Fergus Style Bahamas. With this agreement, the Mallorca-based chain has made its debut in Playa d’en Bossa, Ibiza, with a project to reposition and increase the star rating of the hotel.

The hotel chain is committed to expansion in the Balearic Islands and will start to manage the latest hotel from November 2018 onwards. The establishment has 528 rooms, an extensive range of restaurants, several swimming pools, a gym, spa and garden areas. It represents the first hotel to be operated by Fergus in Ibiza under its Style brand. The establishment had been managed by Nordotel until now.

The repositioning of the property as the Fergus Style Bahamas will involve the renovation of a large number of the features offered at the hotel. Its location, on the beachfront of Playa d’en Bossa and its proximity to the island’s main leisure, shopping and restaurant areas will allow the hotel’s clients to enjoy a wide variety of activities during their holidays on Ibiza.

Fergus is currently undergoing an expansion phase, incorporating new hotels to join those already in its portfolio. The firm is committed to offering better services and facilities through the repositioning of its hotels and the creation of tailor-made products for its clients. Its short- and medium-term plans include incorporating its first assets outside of the Balearic Islands, within Spain, as well as undertaking its first transactions on the international stage. The chain has focused on the Balearic Islands, in particular, said Bernat Vicens, Director General of the chain, speaking to Hosteltur recently, but Fergus Hotels wants to establish a solid and stable presence beyond the Balearic Islands, he added.

Original story: Hosteltur

Translation: Carmel Drake