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The 32-storey Millennium Hilton Bangkok opens on 1 February 2006 , with an ambitious architectural plan that incorporates contemporary western design sensibilities with a touch of traditional Siam. Spectacularly located on the banks of Chao Phraya River in the heart of Bangkok’s original temple precinct, the hotel offers an unusual mix of vistas; up high there’s a 360-degree panorama over the ever changing skyline and snaking klongs, while closer to the river, guest rooms and reception areas offer a box office view over a rag tag of barges and canal boats that ply the waterway. The 543-room property boasts a 50-metre wide river frontage. Guests can access the hotel by road, Skytrain, or more culturally befitting for someone visiting the cradle of Bangkok’s civilization, by riverboat. The short ferry ride from Hilton’s private reception at River City to the hotel’s private pontoon offers a first impression of an Asian metropolis in transition; bustling traffic, modern transport and hulking high rises are punctuated by the spires of grand palaces and golden temples. By night, with the city’s commercial activities at rest, a timeless romance descends for the duration of the crossing. Inside, the hotel is at once cutting-edge and cozy. Chic interiors by BARstudio and lighting by the celebrated New York designer, Tony Chi creates a synergy with the river outside. The 12-storey honeycomb atrium lobby, fully encased in large panes of transparent glass, shimmers with light in a nod to the flotilla of river craft outside, while multiple layers of gleaming pools frame the lobby. Guest rooms are fresh and contemporary, with accents from Thai culture surfacing in golden lacquer and wooden panels. All rooms have postcard perfect views over the river as well as an open plan bathroom, high-speed internet access and in room safes. Executive rooms & suites have a three zone concept - Work, Sleep, Relax - allowing guests to put back a little of what life takes out. To one side of the lobby stands a two-storey spa built to resemble a contemporary Thai Sala. Centred round a huge, centuries old Banyan tree, The Spa, provides an urban retreat from the bustle outside. Each of the ten treatment rooms overlooks the venerated tree and therein captures the spiritual heart of the Thai people.
InterContinental Hotels Group Latin America Opens Crowne Plaza Asuncion; InterContinental Hotels Group announced the opening of the much anticipated Crowne Plaza Asuncion in Paraguay's capital. Under a franchise agreement with Karmar, S.A., IHG now has a hotel in new territory -- adding to its portfolio of global destinations."We are very proud to open the Crowne Plaza Asuncion in Paraguay as it marks our entry into a new country in Latin America," says Alvaro Diago, Area President, InterContinental Hotels Group Latin America. "This opening demonstrates our commitment to establishing a presence within new markets such as Asuncion, as well as our dedication to raising the bar in terms of the caliber of hotel brands available to travelers in Paraguay and throughout the region." Owned by Karmar, S.A., whose major shareholder is Osvaldo Dominguez Dibb, the Crowne Plaza Asuncion is located in the city's historic district. The two-tower hotel has a total of 74 guestrooms. The first tower, formerly the "Hotel Estella Italia" building, was fully renovated and consists of 28 guestrooms; the newly built second tower has 46 guestrooms. They are luxuriously decorated and offer the city's best views of its historical center. The Crowne Plaza Asuncion hotel amenities include two Crowne Club floors, swimming pool, fitness center, 24-hour room service, and a unique lobby bar with outdoor cafe. All guestrooms are equipped with wireless Internet access, and dual-line telephones with voice mail.Just a few blocks from the new IHG property and reflecting Asuncion's colonial past is the Palacio de Gobierno (Government Palace), which was founded in 1537 on hills along the Paraguay River. With a population of 600,000, Asuncion is the shopping, financial and business center for the Spanish-speaking nation, which lies between Brazil, Bolivia and Argentina. Cultural attractions in Asuncion include a Spanish-era cathedral and archeological museum. Visitors often enjoy sipping terrere, a local drink, and "people-watching" from the city's many outdoor cafes. Other popular activities include visiting Asuncion's botanical gardens, which feature more than 100 species of tropical plants, and enjoying a scenic cruise on the Paraguay River. Paraguay's national parks, Jesuit missions and the Chaco wilderness plain are among the most spectacular area attractions.
Sonnenblick Goldman Arranges $46.2M Acquisition Financing for the OHANA Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel Sonnenblick Goldman and Hospitality Advisors, LLC, serving as exclusive financial advisors to Rockpoint Group, LLC, and Outrigger Enterprises, Inc., has arranged both the acquisition and a non-recourse $46.2 million, fixed rate, first-mortgage financing for the acquisition and renovation of the Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel located in Honolulu, Hawaii. AIG Global Investment Group provided the loan. The new ownership has renamed the property the OHANA Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel and is now managed by Outrigger Hotels &Resorts. A $12.1 million renovation will begin in 2007 due to the current strength of the Hawaii tourism market and to capitalize on the fact that guestroom inventory has declined in Waikiki. The 490-room OHANA Waikiki Beachcomber Hotel features spacious guestrooms, an attractive lobby, a restaurant, approximately 23,000 square feet of meeting and showroom facilities in four separate rooms, an outdoor swimming pool and approximately 43,330 square feet of prime retail space anchored by a Macy’s department store. Situated in the heart of Waikiki on Kalakaua Avenue, Waikiki’s main thoroughfare, the hotel is ideally located across the street from world-renowned Waikiki Beach and in close proximity to restaurants, shops, and Outrigger's Waikiki Beach Walk retail and entertainment redevelopment project. “Due to the strength of the sponsorship, the excellent location of the hotel as well as the strong dynamics of the Waikiki lodging market, we were able to generate a highly competitive process with lenders which resulted in a very attractive interest rate for the acquisition and renovation of the property,” commented Holden Lim, vice president of Sonnenblick Goldman’s San Francisco office. “The combination of new, aggressive management by Outrigger Hotels & Resorts, the proposed capital improvement plan, a strong national economy and the recent reduction in lodging inventory of approximately 1,600 guestrooms in Waikiki will create significant upside for the hotel in the short to medium term,” said Rob Stiles, managing director and principal of Sonnenblick Goldman’s San Francisco office.
New Westin Resort and Residences to grace the Caribbean Island of St. Maarten Located on the Dutch side of the Island, The Westin St. Maarten Dawn Beach Resort & Spa And The Westin St. Maarten Dawn Beach Residences are Slated to Open Fall 2006 Starwood Hotels & Resorts’ Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) upper-upscale Westin brand continues its expansion in the Caribbean with the recent groundbreaking of The Westin St. Maarten Dawn Beach Resort & Spa and the adjacent Westin St. Maarten Dawn Beach Residences on the scenic island of St. Maarten. Slated to open Fall 2006, The Westin St. Maarten Dawn Beach Resort & Spa will offer 310 luxurious guest rooms, suites, oceanfront dining, a full-service spa, casino, a wide array of amenities and expansive meeting and event venues. The 99-unit Westin St. Maarten Dawn Beach Residences will be located on the resort grounds offering owners full access to the resort’s services and amenities. The property will fly the Westin flag under a license agreement and is owned and managed by Columbia Sussex, owner, developer and operator of more than 85 hotels around the world. “This hotel will be a welcome addition to Westin’s Caribbean resort expansion in choice destinations and we are thrilled to have a presence on St. Maarten, one of the world’s most popular tropical vacation spots,” said Sue Brush, Senior Vice President, Westin Hotels & Resorts. “St. Maarten, like Westin, carries a rich history and we’re delighted to be able to offer our guests the Westin experience on this lovely island.” “We have successfully built and operated properties in the Caribbean, as well as gaming properties in the U.S., said Columbia Sussex President, William Yung
The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, L.L.C. To Manage Tokyo Luxury Apartment Complex; Agreement Is “First of Its Kind” For Award-Winning Hotel Group Tokyo, 1 December 2005 – Parkside Tower at The Ritz-Carlton, Tokyo, a complex of 244 unfurnished luxury residential apartments, will be managed by The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company when it opens in 2007. Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels, acting as an advisor to Mitsui Fudosan, negotiated the management agreement which was entered into between the five-star hospitality group and Mitsui Fudosan. This agreement marks the first venture by the award-winning hotel company to operate a luxury rental property. Parkside Tower will be adjacent to The Ritz-Carlton, Tokyo, a 250-room hotel, also opening in 2007. The Tokyo Midtown Project is located in Roppongi on the former Defence Agency site. “Tenants living in the 29-floor Parkside Tower will enjoy not only a strategic downtown location, but all the benefits and services which are traditionally provided by Ritz-Carlton to its hotel guests,” said Mr. Tomohiko Sawayanagi, Executive Vice President, Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels. Among these special tenant amenities will be concierge, doormen, housekeeping, and catering services. In addition, Oakwood Asia Pacific, a regional arm of Los Angeles-based Oakwood Worldwide is to manage Tokyo Midtown’s serviced residence to be known as Oakwood Premier Tokyo Midtown. “The 107-unit designer residences will be the first Oakwood Premier branded property in Japan; the highest luxury brand amongst the Oakwood products,” said Mr Sawayanagi. Oakwood is the leading global serviced apartment operator, and already is present in Japan with its other brands.
Sonnenblick Goldman Arranges $114.5M Acquisition and Renovation Financing for the Le Meridien Beverly Hills Sonnenblick-Goldman Company, serving as exclusive financial advisor to SBE Hotel Group, has arranged a non-recourse $114.5 million financing for the acquisition and renovation of the Le Meridien Beverly Hills located in Los Angeles. SBE Hotel Group is a division of the SBE Entertainment Group, a privately held investment firm with rapidly expanding areas of interest in real estate development, hospitality, and film production headed by founder and CEO, Sam Nazarian. The financing was provided by Column Financial, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Credit Suisse First Boston. The 297-room Le Meridien Beverly Hills occupies an entire city block at a busy corner of South La Cienega Boulevard where it intersects Burton Way and San Vicente Boulevard. The hotel is ideally located along Los Angeles’ famed Restaurant Row, which includes many high-profile dining and club destinations. The property boasts two unique dining establishments, including Arnie Morton’s Steakhouse. Standard guestrooms at the hotel measure a generous 420 square feet and the significant suite ratio of over 18% is particularly important in this market dominated by the entertainment industry. The new ownership is currently exploring several exciting options to redesign the hotel including teaming with the world-renown designer, Philippe Starck. “There is a tremendous opportunity for SBE Hotel Group to reposition the asset above the premier boutique hotels in LA, to achieve aggressive NOI growth through premiums in average daily rate and superior utilization of F&B and banquet facilities,” commented Daniel MacDonnell, director of Sonnenblick-Goldman’s San Francisco office.
Financing for the planned $40 million Westin Beale Street Hotel -- one of the largest Downtown projects announced last year, located between Second and Third streets directly across from FedExForum -- has been secured. The 9-story hotel, which is being developed by Nashville-based Senate Hospitality Group, will feature 203 rooms, a Starbucks and a Daily Grill restaurant. The Daily Grill is a California-based chain similar to Houston's that specializes in classic American cuisine. The founding partners on the project are Glenn Malone and Dave Jones of Senate Hospitality and Greg Hnedak and Kirk Bobo of Memphis-based architecture firm Hnedak Bobo Group. "We are finished with our financing efforts and ready to move forward," said Malone, chief operating officer for Senate Hospitality Group, which is planning a press conference next week to discuss the project. "We feel like Downtown Memphis is calling out for a high-quality, upscale hotel and that's what we bring with the Westin Beale Street."
DiamondRock Hospitality Co. has agreed to buy the Orlando Airport Marriott Hotel for $70 million. The REIT, which focuses on high-end hotels, said it plans to spend between $10 million-$12 million on capital improvements.The company said the investment in the 486-room hotel is less than a 9.5 multiple of 2007 projected earnings.
Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman Sets December Opening Construction of the $500 million, 365-room Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman, which was delayed by hurricane damage last year, has set its official opening for next month. The oceanfront hotel, which is located on a 144-acre tract on Seven Mile Beach, includes a residential component called The Reserve, a full-service spa, and five dining venues, among other features.
Sage Lands New Management Contracts Sage Hospitality Resources is expanding its portfolio with four new management contracts. The hotels include the Norwalk Marriott in Norwalk, CA; the Sheraton Chicago Northwest in Arlington, IL; the Sheraton Ferncraft Resort in Danvers, MA and the Charlotte Marriott Executive Park in Charlotte, NC. The properties are “an excellent match” for Sage Hospitality’s management portfolio, according to Walter Isenberg, president/CEO. He added the hotels “compliment our strategic growth plans to establish a strong presence and explore key opportunities in markets throughout the country.” Newly renovated, the Norwalk Marriott is located 12 miles from both Los Angeles and Anaheim. The hotel has 145 guestrooms, 26 suites and 13,000 square feet of meeting and conference space. It also has a pool and fitness center, restaurant, sports lounge, concierge floor and business support services. The Sheraton Chicago Northwest is located next to the Arlington Park Racetrack and features 429 guestrooms and 60,000 square feet of conference and ballroom space. The hotel offers a range of recreational facilities including a heated indoor pool, tennis courts, volleyball and sauna, as well as a business center, car rental desk and multiple restaurants and lounges. The Sheraton Ferncroft is located on a private 250-acre estate on Boston’s North Shore and has 367 rooms and more than 30,000 square feet of meeting and reception space. There is also a business center, three restaurants, tennis, racquetball, sauna, health club and an 18-hole Robert Trent Jones designed golf course.The Charlotte Marriott Executive Park has 297 guestrooms, more than 15,000 square feet of meeting space, an indoor-outdoor pool, fitness center, and a restaurant and lounge.
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