Ashford acquires stake in Highland Hospitality portfolio for $1.7bn


US-based Ashford Hospitality Trust has completed the acquisition of the remaining 28.26% ownership interest in the Highland Hospitality portfolio from its joint venture partner Prudential Real Estate Investors (PREI) for around $1.7bn.

Ashford already has a 71.74% ownership interest in the 28-hotel Highland Hospitality portfolio.

The deal was first announced towards the end of 2014.

"We continue to see further upside potential in this portfolio given the value-creating initiatives we have implemented, as well as the favourable conditions that persist in the lodging industry."

Ashford Hospitality Trust chairman and CEO Monty Bennett said: "Since acquiring a majority interest in the Highland Portfolio almost four years ago, these high-quality assets have significantly exceeded our original expectations.

"Going forward, we continue to see further upside potential in this portfolio given the value-creating initiatives we have implemented, as well as the favourable conditions that persist in the lodging industry."

The Highland Hospitality portfolio includes 19 full-service hotels and nine select-service hotels, covering major brands such as Hilton, Marriott, Hyatt and Starwood.

At the time of acquisition, PREI managing director Soultana Reigle said: "The sale of our fund's ownership interest in the Highland Hospitality portfolio represents an excellent outcome for our investors.

"We are extremely pleased with the value that PREI and Ashford Trust have been able to add to the portfolio throughout our joint venture ownership."

Ashford Hospitality Trust is a real estate investment trust (REIT) that invests in the hospitality industry across all segments, while PREI is the global real estate investment business of Prudential Financial.