Briefs: Hilton, Mercan partnership; St. Regis to debut in Australia

Hilton, Mercan partner in Portugal: Hilton has signed an agreement with Porto, Portugal-based Mercan Properties Group to operate two new hotels in Lagos, Portugal — Lagos Marina Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton and the Hilton Garden Inn Lagos — which will open in summer 2024. Lagos Marina Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton will offer 180 rooms across four floors, while the Hilton Garden Inn Lagos will have 90 rooms of which 27 will be converted into suites. Spanning 250,000 square feet, the site of the two hotels will come up on an urban redevelopment project. This is Hilton’s third agreement with Mercan, following the opening of the 77-key Sé Catedral Hotel Porto (which opened in March), Tapestry Collection by Hilton, and the 130-room Hilton Garden Inn Évora set to open later this year or early 2023.

Rendering of the St. Regis Gold Coast

St. Regis to debut in Australia: Marriott International has signed a management agreement with Australia-based Gurner to launch the St. Regis brand in Australia. The St. Regis Gold Coast is expected to open in 2027 and will be a part of the first tower in the US$1.7 billion La Pelago project at Gold Coast, a lifestyle resort and destination. The new-build resort will feature 185 rooms and suites with plans to add a specialty restaurant, sky bar, pool bar, lounge and spa. La Pelago will include 12,000 square meters of lifestyle amenities like luxury residences, the St. Regis hotel and more than 5,500 square meters of retail and hospitality. When it opens, St. Regis Gold Coast will be the fourth Marriott property in the Gold Coast. Currently, Marriott operates 39 hotels in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific, with 26 hotels in Australia.

NewcrestImage acquires 45-hotel portfolio: NewcrestImage, Dallas, Texas, has completed the acquisition of a 45-hotel portfolio, which includes 35 Marriott-branded, seven Hilton-branded and three Choice-branded properties totaling 3,300 rooms across 11 states. The transaction was announced in early September. NewcrestImage has retained the management companies — Aimbridge Hospitality and HHM Hospitality — which were earlier in place for the hotels. Since March, NewcrestImage has added 77 hotels totaling 8,000 rooms, after selling a 27-hotel portfolio to Summit Hotel Properties in January.

First Hospitality adds 2: Chicago, Illinois-based First Hospitality has added two hotels to its management portfolio — the Inn on Sheridan, an 84-key independent, boutique hotel in Zion, Illinois, and the 117-key newly renovated Holiday Inn Express Cincinnati West in Cincinnati, Ohio. The addition of the hotels marks First Hospitality’s first properties in both markets. The company has signed eight third-party management contracts in eight weeks, including a new property under development in Louisville, Kentucky, which will open in late 2024. First Hospitality plans to add an additional 800 rooms to its portfolio by the end of the year.

Pullman grows China presence: Pullman Hotels & Resorts, a premium hospitality brand under Accor, has announced the opening of the 322-key Pullman Jinhua in Jinhua City in China’s Zhejiang Province. The hotel, now open, is also undergoing upgrades which will see the addition of the brand’s Junction space, a social hub, two restaurants, a ballroom and additional multi-function rooms. This is Pullman’s 48th hotel in Greater China, with eight Pullman hotels opened through the year. Pullman plans to open 20 more hotels in China by 2026, with developments underway across the region. The opening comes less than two weeks after the opening of Pullman Shenzhen North. Accor will also open the 368-key Pullman Huai’an Falcon by the end of the year, and has recently signed a new Pullman hotel development at Tianfu International Health Town.