GIC finalizes deal with Seibu: Japan-based Seibu Holdings has finalized a deal to sell more than a third of the 76 assets owned by its hospitality unit, Prince Hotels, to Reco Pine Pvt. Ltd., an affiliate of Government of Singapore Investment Corp. (GIC) for 150 billion yen (US$1.30 billion). A total of 31 hotels, which include 15 Prince hotels, have been sold to GIC. After the acquisition, the properties will be operated by Seibu Prince Hotels Worldwide. The profit generated from the sale is expected to be around 80 billion yen (US$694 million).
Anantara grows in China: Anantara has added to its luxury portfolio in China with the planned development of the Anantara Anji Resort in northwestern Zhejiang Province. The 162-key resort will be spread over 165 acres and will include a meeting space, an outdoor swimming pool with bar, four international restaurants, a fitness center, children’s zone and spa. The resort’s architecture is designed by Meng Fanhao of Line+ Studio. Construction will begin in March and is expected to completed by the end of 2024. This will be Anantara’s third resort in China, after the Anantara Guiyang Resort in Guizhou Province and Anantara Xishuangbanna Resort in Yunnan Province.
Half stake in Merrion available: The Hastings Hotel Group, Belfast, Northern Ireland, reportedly is seeking a buyer for its 50% stake in Dublin’s luxury 141-room Merrion Hotel. Sources suggest it could fetch close to €1 million (US$1.13 million) per key, which would equate to more than a €70 million (US$79.23 million) sale price. Businessmen Lochlann Quinn and Martin Naughton together own the other 50% of the hotel. Hastings’ other hotels include Belfast’s Europa, the Grand Central and the Culloden Estate and Spa. In October, Hasting sold the Slieve Donard Resort and Spa in Newcastle, England, to U.S.-based AJ Capital Partners for £40 million (US$54.32 million).
AvantStay secures US$500 million funding: AvantStay, the Los Angeles, California-based vacation home rental company, has closed a US$500 million PropCo funding round led by Saluda Grade, the New York-based real estate advisory and asset management firm. With this capital and new partnership with Saluda Grade, AvantStay seeks to institutionalize a new asset class and plans to manage the country’s biggest luxury home portfolio. Saluda Grade was also an investor in AvantStay’s Series B fundraise of US$160 million announced in December 2021. Saluda Grade has identified 12 securitizations worth more than US$2 billion the past year, consisting of single and multifamily housing non-traditional debt securitizations.
Sir Francis Drake Hotel rebrands: Sir Francis Drake Hotel in San Francisco, California, has been renamed as The Beacon Grand, in the attempt to rename roads and landmarks that for many years were named after the slave-trading explorer. The 416-key hotel has remained shut since the beginning of the pandemic and is set to reopen this spring after a makeover of the interiors. The hotel was acquired by the Northview Hotel Group in 2021 for around US$157 million. The hotel’s rebranding will preserve components of its past, the new owner said. Named in honor of Francis Drake, the first English sea captain to circumnavigate the globe in the 1500s, his name came under scrutiny during the Black Lives Matter movement as he also participated in slaving voyages to Africa. The movement triggered a re-examination of place and monument names across the country with ties to racism.