Check in! – latest hotel highlights from across EMEA

The Blue Swan Daily brings you a round up of some of the latest hotel news from across Europe, Middle East and Africa.

  • Marriott signs agreement to introduce Ritz-Carlton brand to Montenegro
  • Accor and Marriott have largest hotel supply in Africa, but Hilton is biggest individual brand
  • Hilton hits 100 hotel milestone in Africa with Hampton by Hilton Sandton Grayston property
  • Marriott outlines plans to add 40 new properties across Africa by 2023
  • Accor confirms German city of Darmstadt as first international property for new greet brand
  • Latest industry news and developments

Marriott signs agreement to introduce Ritz-Carlton brand to Montenegro

Marriott International has confirmed the signing of a milestone agreement with Northstar DOO to bring The Ritz-Carlton brand to Montenegro. Under the plan funded by Al Yasra, The Ritz-Carlton, Montenegro and The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Montenegro are scheduled to open in 2024 and design plans for the hotel include 120 elegantly appointed guestrooms and suites. Slated for a prime position on the Western tip of the chic Luštica Peninsula, the hotel and residences are expected to boast panoramic views over the glittering Adriatic Sea. The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Montenegro is expected to offer 180 apartments and 48 villas and is scheduled to complete the first phase of construction in 2023, with the final phase scheduled for completion by 2028.

Accor and Marriott have largest hotel supply in Africa, but Hilton is biggest individual brand

Accor and Marriott International represent the largest hotel supply and pipeline counts in Africa, according to data from benchmarking specialist STR. Accor’s portfolio covered 24,512 rooms as of 31-Jul-2019, while Marriott accounted for 24,508 rooms. The companies also lead the development pipeline with 19,745 and 15,219 rooms under contract, respectively. Under contract covers the in construction, final planning and planning phases of the pipeline. Protea Hotels by Marriott is the continent’s second-largest brand (8,374 rooms), but Hilton is the largest individual brand (8,617).

Hilton hits 100 hotel milestone in Africa with Hampton by Hilton Sandton Grayston property

Hilton announced at the recent African Hotel Investment Forum (AHIF) the signing of Hampton by Hilton Sandton Grayston, a deal which marks the first for the brand in Africa and a milestone of 100 hotels trading or under development on the African continent. A franchise agreement was signed with Afrirent Pty through its Indalo Hotels & Leisure subsidiary for Indaloto operate the 158 guest room Hampton by Hilton hotel in Sandton, the financial capital of South Africa. This mid-market property will join Hilton’s flagship upscale Hilton Sandton, offering additional choice for travellers to the district commonly known as ‘Africa’s richest Square Mile’. Construction is scheduled to begin at the site on Grayston Drive in early 2020 with first guests set to be welcomed by mid-2021. Hilton has enjoyed a rapid period of expansion in the focused service segment through the Hilton Garden Inn brand which has operational hotels in six African markets and a further ten under development. Hampton by Hilton is expected to compliment this growth and provide owners and customers with greater choice. 2019 is a standout year for Hilton in Africa where it has already opened four properties, entered three new markets whilst also further strengthening its multi-brand pipeline.

Marriott outlines plans to add 40 new properties across Africa by 2023

Marriott International has reinforced its commitment to Africa by announcing it expects to add 40 properties and over 8,000 rooms across the continent by the end of 2023. The company has announced it has signed agreements to open its first property in Cape Verde and further expand its presence in Ethiopia, Kenya and Nigeria. Marriott’s development pipeline through 2023 is estimated to drive investment of over USD2 billion from property owners and is expected to generate over 12,000 new jobs in Africa. Marriott International’s current portfolio in Africa encompasses close to 140 properties with more than 24,000 rooms across 14 brands and 20 countries and territories. Marriott’s expected growth through 2023 is driven by a strong demand and steady growth for its premium and select-service brands– led by Marriott Hotels with eight anticipated openings and six slated openings under Protea Hotels by Marriott. The company is also expected to introduce the Courtyard by Marriott, Residence Inn by Marriott and Element Hotels brands. Key markets fuelling Marriott’s growth in Africa include Morocco, South Africa, Algeria and Egypt. Marriott’s recent deal signings in Africa are the Four Points by Sheraton São Vincente, Laginha Beach (Cape Verde), a 128 room property scheduled to open in 2022; the Four Points by Sheraton Mekelle (Ethiopia), a 241 room property also due to open in 2022; the Protea Hotel by Marriott Kisumu (Kenya), a 125 room property with views of Lake Victoria; and the Residence Inn by Marriott Lagos Victoria Island (Nigeria), a 130 room property situated in Lagos Lagoon opening in 2023.

Accor confirms German city of Darmstadt as first international property for new greet brand

French hotel group Accor launched its first property under its new sustainability-oriented brand with the 52-room Greet Hotel Beaune in Burgundy. It confirms that many further locations will open their doors in the near future, notably in Marseille (St Charles et Aéroport), Lyon Perrache, Paris, St-Witz, Rennes, Bourges and St-Germain-en-Laye. Accor Group hopes to open 300 greet hotels throughout Europe by 2030 and the network will quickly extend to various European destinations, with the German city of Darmstadt confirmed to become the very first greet hotel outside France in the coming months.

News Briefs

  • Blackstone Real Estate Partners Europe has reached an agreement to acquire five Greek hotel businesses from the Louis Group, one of the leading hotel groups in the Mediterranean, at a total enterprise value of EUR178.6 million. The five hotel businesses are located in the Greek Islands with two in Corfu (Corcyra Beach and Grand Hotel), two in Zante (Zante Beach and Plagos Beach) and one in Crete (Creta Princess). They have a total of 1,464 hotel rooms.
  • French hotel management company NEHO Group is adopting technology from guest acquisition platform SiteMinder to deliver more guests to its 17 managed properties and 1,800 rooms across France and Belgium. The move forms part of the group’s growth strategy, as it looks to expand its portfolio across Europe. NEHO Group is capitalising on France’s growing USD266 million travel and tourism industry to rebuild, modernise and open both new and existing properties.
  • Polish Hotel Holdings has introduced part of the refurbished Hotel Courtyard by Marriott at Warsaw’s Frederic Chopin airport after four months of renovations. Works included a new restaurant area and conference facilities, with 13 conference rooms available with a total area of over 750 square metres. The next stage of renovation of public areas will be the preparation of a completely new lobby bar and reception area, as well as renovation of hotel rooms.
  • LAK Real Estate has signed a lease to construct a new 700 room hotel complex at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, representing an investment of EUR120 million. The hotel will feature meeting and conference facilities with internal access to the terminal and the train station. Construction is slated to begin in 2020 with opening scheduled in 2023.
  • Frasers Hospitality has announced the grand opening of its 154-unit Fraser Suites Hamburg. Formerly the Oberfinanzdirektion; a tax authority building in the 1900s, the historical building has been restored and refurbished to deliver a luxurious and alluring 5 Star superior hotel located in the prime area of Rodingsmarkt.
  • The Drisco Hotel Tel Aviv has been awarded the highly prestigious “5-Star Plus” classification by The Israel Ministry of Tourism making it the first independent hotel in Tel Aviv to receive the rating. The Drisco joins a distinguished group of Tel Aviv hotels to receive the Ministry of Tourism’s top rating, including The Carlton Tel Aviv, Sheraton Tel Aviv, Royal Beach Tel Aviv and Dan Panorama Tel Aviv.
  • The Radisson Blu Hotel, Bremen has implemented the Knowcross service quality and optimisation solutions platform to automate its daily back of the house operations, improve staff productivity, increase guest satisfaction, achieve a reduction in the hotel’s carbon footprint and provide enhanced personalised experiences to guests. The upscale property is located on Bremen’s historic Bottcherstrasse shopping street.
  • InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has entered into an exclusive loyalty partnership with Mr & Mrs Smith, the world-renowned travel club and boutique hotel specialists. From early next year, IHG Rewards Club members will be able to earn and redeem points at over 500 handpicked Mr & Mrs Smith hotels through IHG’s direct channels (including and IHG mobile app) more than doubling the number of luxury and boutique hotels which members can select from.
  • Accor Hotels plans to open six Mercure properties in the UK, following a deal with Danish based real estate property group Proark. The refurbished Park Inn hotels in Bedford, Birmingham, Cardiff, Harlow, Nottingham and Telford will all open in their new form by the end of this year.