Hines Venture Acquires Five Hotels on the Greek Island of Crete

ATHENS – (Realty News Report) – Hines, the Houston-based international real estate firm, and Henderson Park, a London-based private equity real estate manager, have acquired five hotels on the Greek island of Crete, a tourist destination.

The 1,094-room, 721,182-SF Crete portfolio comprises five seafront hotels in key resort locations across the island:

  • Hermes and Coral, two adjacent hotels with 218 and 170 rooms respectively, centrally located in the coastal city of Agios Nikolaos;
  • Santa Marina and Apollonia, with 208 and 336 rooms respectively, benefitting from prime seafront locations in Crete’s capital city, Heraklion, which is near the island’s main international airport and close to the world famous archaeological site Knossos;
  • A 162-room resort and spa hotel located in Sitia, a coastal town on the west of the island.

The Crete hotel portfolio, acquired in two separate transactions, marks the joint venture’s second foray into the Greek hotel market, following the acquisition in 2017 of the former Ledra hotel in Athens. The Ledra hotel was transformed by Hines and Henderson Park into the five-star Grand Hyatt hotel, now one of Athens’ most successful hotels.

All of the partnership’s five Crete hotels have strong track records of occupancy levels and offer significant potential to create value over the medium and long term through refurbishment, brand repositioning and proactive management.

Crete is Greece’s largest island and most established resort destination. The Mediterranean island’s appeal is driven by its longer than average holiday season, running from April through to October, as well as its accessibility with a full ferry schedule and three airports, including the new international airport at Kasteli, which will be able to accommodate all sizes of passenger aircraft.

London-based Henderson Park and Hines will bring their local and international hotel asset management expertise to these latest acquisitions in Crete, having successfully repositioned and enhanced numerous other hotel projects around the world. Y&T Daskalantonakis Knossian Group, a specialist asset manager of upscale hotels, will be the local operating partner, responsible for managing the Crete hotels.

The global expertise on the Hines/Henderson Park partnership has an advantage in the Crete market where hotel ownership is surprisingly fragmented and characterized by many local owner-operators, said Nick Weber, Founding Partner of Henderson Park. “While the leisure industry has no doubt been temporarily impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, we are firm believers that the industry will bounce back. With this transaction, we have been able to provide a solution to a distressed situation and gain control of a number of high-quality, high-potential assets in a globally leading tourist destination at an attractive entry basis. Government plans to begin reopening Greece are reaffirming our overall investment thesis, and we have strong conviction in the significant repositioning opportunities that have been identified to enhance longer term value.”

Paul Gomopoulos, Senior Managing Director and country head for Greece at Hines said: “While the headwinds from the global pandemic will clearly have a material impact on the leisure and hospitality sectors, we have confidence in the mid- to long-term prospects and as such, are committed to pursuing further opportunities in this market.”

Financing for the transaction was provided by Piraeus Bank. Hines and Henderson Park were advised by Lambadarios Law Firm.

Henderson Park has invested $10 billion in building a portfolio of real estate assets across Europe, with exposure to the gateway and capital cities of the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Germany, Ireland, Greece and Poland. The firm’s 15 million SF and is diversified across the office, logistics, multifamily, student housing, hotel and retail sectors.

Hines, founded in Houston in 1957 by Gerald D, Hines, has a presence in 219 cities in 23 countries. The firm has 148 developments currently underway around the world.

July 3, 2020 Realty News Report Copyright 2020


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