Briefs: Baccarat to Rome; Wyndham expands Meetings Collection

Baccarat to Rome: SH Hotels & Resorts, the Miami, Florida-based affiliate of Starwood Capital Group, and Luxembourg-headquartered Boscalt Hospitality have announced plans to reimagine Hotel Majestic in Rome under Baccarat, the French luxury house. Scheduled to open in late 2025 after restoration, Baccarat Hotel Rome will offer 83 rooms and suites, three grand dining rooms with the main restaurant featuring a terrace with views across Via Veneto, a cocktail bar, rooftop bar, spa and fitness facility. The property’s iconic design by architect Gaetano Koch will be retained.

IHG adds in Saudi Arabia: IHG Hotels & Resorts has expanded its luxury portfolio in Saudi Arabia with the signing of a management agreement with Al Ajlan Co. for InterContinental Hotel & Residences in the Riyadh North area. The 400-room hotel and serviced apartments will open by 2028 and will be a part of the masterplan consisting of high-end retail, entertainment and offices. Currently, IHG operates 37 hotels across five brands in Saudi Arabia with 29 more properties in the development pipeline slated to open in the next three to five years.

Dolce by Wyndham Athens Attica Riviera

Wyndham grows meetings offering: Wyndham Hotels & Resorts is globally expanding it Meetings Collection. When booking with The Meetings Collection, planners can get multi-meeting discounts, enhanced flexibility (up to 30% group attrition with no penalty), dedicated sales team support and a single point of contact for each event, exclusive destination experiences and double Wyndham Rewards points. These perks are available on bookings across U.S. properties. Similar perks are available in all other regions but in some cases, they may be available for a limited time. With a global portfolio of more than 160 properties across over a dozen brands, The Meetings Collection was first launched in the U.S. in 2021 and is a part of the Wyndham Business program.

Stamford Plaza sells for record price: The Stamford Plaza Hotel in Auckland, New Zealand, sold for NZ$170 million (US$94.93 million), making it the biggest-ever hotel sale in New Zealand. Singapore-based Stamford Land Corp. sold the 286-room hotel to Albert Street Hotel, which is owned by a consortium comprising CP Group, the U.K.’s Alvarium Investments and Singapore-based Archipelago Capital. The new owners plan to refurbish and rebrand the property under a “major international name.” JLL brokered the deal. The transaction is expected to settle in December. Stamford expects to book a gain of S$50 million (US$34.81 million) from the hotel’s sale. The 149-unit privately-owned luxury apartment block on top of the hotel is not part of the sale. The hotel was recently valued at NZ$140 million (US$78.17 million), as per a filing on the Singaporean stock exchange. Stamford Group acquired the hotel 27 years ago and had been managing it through its Stamford Hotels & Resorts subsidiary.

Hilton Hanoi to rebrand as Waldorf Astoria: Hilton has signed an agreement with BRG Group to rebrand the Hilton Hanoi Opera in Hanoi, Vietnam, into Waldorf Astoria Hanoi, the country’s first Waldorf Astoria-branded property. Extensive renovations will see the number of rooms reduced to 187 from 286 and redesigned public spaces, which are expected to be completed in 2025. The redesigned and rebranded luxury hotel will join Hilton’s pipeline of nine additional properties in Vietnam. The hotel will be the fourth property in Southeast Asia, after sister properties in Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok and Jakarta. Waldorf Astoria, which operates six hotels across China, the Maldives and Thailand, plans to more than double its footprint in the Asia Pacific region in the next five years. Other than the Hanoi hotel, properties are presently under construction in Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta and Sydney.

NIPCO acquires majority stake in Capital Hotels: 22 Hospitality Ltd., a subsidiary of Lagos, Nigeria-based NIPCO Plc, has acquired a majority stake in Capital Hotels Ltd., the owner of Abuja Sheraton Hotel. The new investor plans to reposition it as the first-choice luxury hotel in Abuja and restore the hotel to its former glory. The deal was in line with the efforts of the downstream operator to diversify into Nigeria’s hospitality sector. The hotel is managed by Starwood/Marriott under system license agreements with CHP. Starwood is believed to have acknowledged in previous reports that the hotel was in a “very degraded state and will require hard renovations” to make it brand compliant.

RADCO expands Florida presence: The RADCO Companies has added three Courtyard by Marriott hotels with more than 300 rooms in Florida. Additional terms of the deal were not disclosed. Hunter Hotels Advisors brokered a deal, including the Courtyards in Pensacola and downtown Panama City Beach, while CBRE Hotels brokered the deal for Courtyard in downtown St. Petersburg. Of the three properties, two have undergone recent renovations and RADCO will start updating the other hotel later in the year. RADCO will also make additional operational and capital improvements to the two recently renovated properties. The Courtyard by Marriott in downtown St. Petersburg will be managed by TPG Hotels, Resorts & Marinas. LBA Hospitality will continue managing the Pensacola and Panama City Beach Courtyards. LBA Hospitality also manages three other hotels which were recently acquired by RADCO in Panama City Beach. RADCO launched a new hotel division in early 2021 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic’s operational and capital market disruptions in the hospitality sector. With these acquisitions, RADCO’s hotel portfolio has rapidly grown to nine properties, including six in Florida, within the last 13 months.

Mixed-use project in NC: North Carolina-based Toxaway Park has unveiled plans for Longcliff Village, a 107-acre mixed-use district located near Lake Toxaway. The development will feature two hotels, 160-unit housing and commercial and retail space in Transylvania County, North Carolina. Planned by urban design and architecture firm Cooper Robertson along with Siteworks Studio and Rowhouse Architects, work on the project will start in mid-2023. Longcliff Village will also consist of a town center and a nature park. The hotels include a 24-key boutique lodge and spa and the 40-room Village Inn. Charleston, South Carolina-based Indigo Road Hospitality Group will be leading the hospitality development along with Lake Toxaway resident and hospitality veteran Kirk Kinsell.

Curator Collection adds 3: Curator Hotel & Resort Collection, a collection of small brands and independent lifestyle properties founded by Pebblebrook Hotel Trust and other hotel operators, has announced the addition of three hotels to its portfolio. The properties include Newport Harbor Island Hotel in Newport, Rhode Island (the former Gurney’s Newport Resort & Marina), The Source in Denver, Colorado and Hotel Per La in Los Angeles, California.

UVA breaks ground on hotel, conference center: The University of Virginia and its partners have broken ground on a new hotel and conference center in Charlottesville. The property is expected to open in spring 2025. Pyramid Global Hospitality, Boston, Massachusetts, will manage the hospitality center, whose name will be announced later. Besides a 214-room hotel, the property will include several spaces for business and academic conferences, with plans for a university welcome area. The property will also feature a full-service restaurant with indoor and outdoor terrace dining, a rooftop café, a grab-and-go eatery, 25,000 square feet of event space including a 10,000-square-foot ballroom. The meeting and event venue will be certified by the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.