DUBAI, April 28 Dubai government-owned hotelier
Jumeirah Group, a unit of Dubai Holding, said on Wednesday it
planned to open ten hotels in the next 18 months, and launch a
new hotel brand, after strong results in the first quarter.
The luxury hotel management group said it expected to open
the new hotels in locations including Frankfurt, Kuwait, the
Maldives, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Shanghai.
Jumeirah's parent company Dubai Holding [DUBAHC.UL], the
investment conglomerate owned by the emirate's ruler, is
considering restructuring up to $20 billion in debt, the FT
reported on March 29. [ID:nLDE62S097]
The move would be another blow to indebted Dubai, one of
seven members comprising the UAE.
Dubai Holding spans financial investments, hospitality and
Earlier in April, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed al Maktoum, the
head of the emirate's main fiscal committee, said Dubai Holding
does not need assistance and is problem-free. [ID:nLDE63B20M]
Jumeirah is one of Dubai's prized assets.
The hotelier said on Wednesday it so far had a total of 32
management agreements to operate hotels globally.
"Jumeirah Group reaffirms its growth strategy of having 60
hotels signed up by 2012," the company said. "The company also
feels confident that it will have 30 hotels open in 2013."
In Dubai, the hotelier's beachfront properties saw occupancy
of 92.5 percent in April and an average of 89 percent in
February and March, it said.
In New York, Jumeirah Essex House registered average
occupancy rates of 85 percent in April, with "strong business on
the books for the late Spring and Summer seasons".
London properties saw a similar performance, it said.
The company also named VENU Hotels as its new brand, to
launch later this year, after locations of its first set of
hotels is confirmed.
"The Group is in advanced stages of negotiation with
developers interested in opening VENU branded hotels in the
Middle East, Northern Africa, Eastern Europe and Asia-Pacific,"
the firm said.
(Reporting by Tamara Walid; Editing by Jason Benham and Jon