JV will develop conference and business facilities on adjacent site
CITY Developments Ltd (CDL) has teamed up with a company owned by Sudhir Gupta of Amtel Group for a US $125 million joint venture in Moscow that involves investing in a hotel that will be repositioned as a Copthorne (under CDL’s Millennium & Copthorne Hotels chain). The tie-up will also develop conference and business facilities, among other things on a vacant site next door.
‘CDL is also looking at more residential developments and hotel investments in the Russian cities of Moscow and St Petersburg,’ a CDL spokesman said.
Under the agreement inked yesterday, CDL will take a 50 per cent stake in Soft Proekt, which owns the Iris Congress Hotel and a nine-storey serviced apartment building in Moscow. The remaining 50 per cent in Soft Proekt is held by Golden Orchard Hotels Pte Ltd, which is linked to Dr Gupta, who is founder and chairman of the Amtel Group of Companies.
The eight-storey Iris Congress Hotel has over 200 rooms and facilities, including 13 conference rooms. The joint venture also plans to build a mixed-use development complex on a vacant plot adjoining the existing hotel. The complex will include conference and business facilities, food and beverage areas, and a car park. Details are being finalised.
The combined land area of the site of the joint venture is 287,547 sq ft. It is located along Korovinskoye Chaussee, about 15 km north of Moscow city centre and 16 km south-east of Sheremetyevo Airport.
CDL said that Moscow is experiencing an acute shortage of hotel rooms due to its economic boom, and recorded among the highest revenue per available room growth in Europe last year.
Yesterday’s agreement is CDL’s maiden investment in Russia, although the group has been marketing some of its upmarket Singapore condos in the country for a while.
‘We look forward in great anticipation to exploring further opportunities in our investments and developments in Russia and Eastern Europe,’ CDL executive chairman Kwek Leng Beng said in a release yesterday.
India-born Dr Gupta, who was educated in Russia and is now a Singapore citizen, is no stranger to CityDev. He bought three floors and a penthouse at The Sail @ Marina Bay in 2005.
CityDev also indicated in its release yesterday that M&C, its London-listed hotel arm, will soon be launching the Grand Millennium brand as its most prestigious brand in key cities.
First off will be the former Regent Hotel in Kuala Lumpur, which has just been reflagged as a Grand Millennium.
Ongoing refurbishments at the property are expected to be completed soon.
M&C’s three other brands are Millennium, Copthorne and Kingsgate.
Dr Gupta’s Amtel Properties Development also has a joint venture with The Ascott Group, a subsidiary of CapitaLand, to acquire and develop international-class serviced residences in strategic business districts in Moscow and St Petersburg.
Source: Business Times 18 Oct 07