Melia Hotels signs deal to open hotels in Qatar & Indonesia

Spanish hotel company Melia Hotels International has inked agreements for two new hotel in Qatar and Indonesia.

The future Meliá Doha is scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2015, and the Gran Meliá Bintan will open in 2017.

The 280-room five-star Meliá Doha hotel will be located in West Bay and will be the operator’s third in the GCC. It will be housed in the 41-floor Bin Samikh Tower.

IHG debuts Holiday Inn Express hotel brand in Russia

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) in collaboration with Regional Hotel Chain (RHC) is to launch its Holiday Inn Express brand in Russia, the CIS and Georgia.

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Slated to open in coming weeks, Holiday Inn Express Voronezh – Kirova, which marks the debut of the brand in the region, is located in Voronezh city centre at Kirova Street 9/1, Voronezh.

The 145-room hotel is in close proximity to various attractions as Voronezh State Opera and Ballet Theatre, the Local Museum, Annunciation Cathedral and Koltsov Square with its musical fountain.

Hilton Worldwide debuts new hotel brand Canopy

canopy-1Hilton Worldwide announced that it is starting a new hotel brand, Canopy, aimed at travellers who value design, social common areas and advanced technology.

The new Canopy by Hilton brand will debut in 2015.

Hilton has already signed 11 letters of intent for properties.

London hotel introduces Harry Potter-theme rooms

The Georgian House Hotel in central London has introduced Harry Potter-style gothic rooms based on the film franchise.

The hotel has converted two of its rooms into ‘Wizard Chambers’ housing ‘Muggle-size’ four-poster wooden beds with velvet canopies, trunks, cauldrons, spell books, potion bottles and other ‘wizardly details’.

The whole package includes a tour of London around the various filming locations of the Harry Potter series. Guests can also get to the nearby Victoria Coach Station for the special Harry Potter tour bus going to the Warner Brothers Studio in Leavesden, on the fringes of Watford, where the film series was filmed. Visitors can also get to see actual costumes, props, and sets such as The Ministry of Magic, Diagon Alley and The Burrow.

Hilton signs deal to sell Waldorf Astoria New York for $1.95bn

Astoria-1Hilton Worldwide Holdings has entered an agreement with Anbang Insurance Group, with Anbang agreeing to purchase the Waldorf Astoria New York for $1.95bn, making it the world’s most expensive hotel ever sold.

The Waldorf Astoria New York is a luxury hotel located at 301 Park Avenue in Manhattan, and is the flagship hotel of Hilton Worldwide’s rapidly-expanding luxury brand, Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts.

The Waldorf opened in 1931 and is a 47-storey Art Deco landmark designed by architects Schultze and Weaver.

Hyatt Hotels opens Puerto Rico’s first extended stay hotel

Hyatt Hotels and PRISA Group and McConnell Valdés Consulting announced the opening of Hyatt House San Juan, Puerto Rico’s first extended stay hotel, as well as the brand’s first hotel outside the US.

Located in Miramar neighborhood, the 126-room Hyatt House San Juan is in proximity to Puerto Rico Convention Center, Financial District in Hato Rey, Isla Grande Airport, and the Port of San Juan.

Hyatt House San Juan offers residentially inspired studio and one-bedroom suites, with views of the Atlantic Ocean and San Juan Bay.

Marriott International to open 30 new properties in Africa

Marriott-1Marriott International has outlined plans to open 30 new properties across the continent by 2020, in a move to expand globally.

Africa’s largest hotel company, following its strategic acquisition of Protea Hotel Group, plans to open nine of the 30 properties by the end of 2015.

Marriott International Middle East and Africa president and managing director Alex Kyriakidis said: "The potential of the African market is awe-inspiring and only really matched by the extraordinary people and places we encounter every day as our brands puts down roots across the continent.

Wyndham signs deal to open first Ramada property in Ethiopia

Wyndham Hotel Group has signed a management agreement to open Ramada Addis, its first property in Ethiopia, Africa.

Due to open in the first half of 2015, the Ramada Addis will have 128 guest rooms and eight suite rooms, and will be located near the major road connecting the city centre with the Addis Ababa Bole International Airport.

The company currently owns five hotels under the Ramada and Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham brand in Ghana, Morocoo, Nigeria and Tunisia. The addition of Ramada Addis expands Wyndham Hotel Group into its seventh market on the African continent.