Posted on June 22, 2012

US hotel group Starwood Capital is to sell four key French properties, including the famed Martinez in Cannes and the Concorde Lafayette in Paris, to a Qatari investor, a union official said on Friday.

Starwood Capital's Groupe du Louvre will hold a meeting on Thursday with the sale of the Martinez, Concorde Lafayette, Hotel du Louvre and the Palais de la Mediterrannée in Nice on the agenda, union representative Claude Levy told AFP. Starwood Capital in Paris declined to comment on the sale.

"A promise to sell has been signed recently and there will be an announcement on the matter on Thursday June 28. The sale has been imminent for a while," said Levy.

Qatar Airways Network

A source close to the sale said the buyer was Katara Hospitality, formerly known as Qatar National Hotels Co., which is looking to extend its luxury hotel portfolio. Katara Hospitality notably owns Paris's luxury Peninsula hotel that is to open next year.

Industry website Hospitality On says that Katara Hospitality announced in May that it wanted to go from owning 24 hotels to owning 60 by 2030. "We know it's Qataris, but nothing more," Levy said, adding that the four hotels currently employ a total of 1,200 people.

source: AFP