(BUSINESS WIRE) Hilton Hotels Corporation, announced it has exchanged contracts to sell two major UK hotels - the 1054 room Hilton London Metropole and the 794 room Hilton Birmingham Metropole - to Dr. Edward Wojakovski's family owned Tonstate for the cash sum of GBP 417 million. The transaction is expected to complete before year end 2006.
Hilton will retain long-term management contracts on both hotels. These contracts will ensure the representation of the Hilton brand in two of the largest and most impressive hotels in Europe. As part of the deal negotiated by Dr. Wojakovski and the Hilton International real estate team, it was agreed that Tonstate would dedicate the resources necessary to continue renovation programs at each of the properties.
Robert M. La Forgia, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Hilton Hotels Corporation, commented on the sale: "We are very pleased to have reached an agreement to sell these key meeting and convention properties to Tonstate, an outstanding owner and partner. We are also pleased that Hilton will continue to manage these properties and be associated with the hotels' dedicated team members, who deliver superior service to our guests.
"With the expected completion of the sale of the two Metropole properties, our very successful asset sale program will have delivered more than $2 billion in proceeds since early 2005. The hotel transaction market continues to be vibrant, with a high level of market interest and enthusiasm being shown for quality hotel assets. Consistent with our strategy to grow the managed and franchised business and reduce hotel ownership, we intend to place further hotels on the market; for example, we have recently listed 11 properties across Europe and also announced that we are evaluating alternatives for the Scandic brand", La Forgia added.
Hilton will use the proceeds from the sale of these hotels to pay down debt.
Hilton was advised by Christie & Co and SJ Berwin. Tonstate was advised by CBRE Hotels and DLA Piper.
1. Hilton London Metropole is the largest business hotel in the UK and the second largest in Europe, with 1054 rooms and 46,000 sqft (4300 sqm) of purpose-built, state- of-the-art conference and convention space.
2. Hilton Birmingham Metropole is the largest UK hotel outside London with 794 rooms and 63,000 sqft (5900 sqm) of purpose-built, conference and convention space.
About Hilton Hotels Corporation:
Hilton Hotels Corporation (NYSE:HLT) is the leading global hospitality company, with more than 2,800 hotels and 490,000 rooms in more than 80 countries, including 150,000 team members worldwide. Hilton UK & Ireland currently operates 73 hotels with over 15,300 bedrooms and 15,200 staff throughout the country.
The company owns, manages or franchises a hotel portfolio of some of the best known and highly regarded brands, including Hilton(R), Conrad(R), Coral by Hilton(R), Doubletree(R), Embassy Suites Hotels(R), Hampton Inn(R), Hampton Inn & Suites(R), Hilton Garden Inn(R), Hilton Grand Vacations(TM), Homewood Suites by Hilton(R), Scandic and The Waldorf=Astoria Collection(TM).
The Hilton Family of Hotels adheres to founder Conrad Hilton's philosophy that, "It has been, and continues to be, our responsibility to fill the earth with the light and warmth of hospitality." The company put a name to its unique brand of service that has made it the best known and most highly regarded hotel company: be hospitable(R). The philosophy is shared by all 10 brands in the Hilton Family of Hotels, and is the inspiration for its overarching message of kindness and generosity.
For more information about our company, please visit www.hiltonworldwide.com, and to learn more about our be hospitable philosophy, please visit www.behospitable.com.