13 November 2017
Reporter: Theo Andrew

JV makes penultimate exit from Prime Europe Hotels portfolio

A joint venture (JV) between UK-based Benson Elliot, US-based Walton Street and Algonquin has sold a hotel in Venice and a hotel in Milan, as it continues its exit from its Prime Europe Hotels (PEH) portfolio.

The partnership disposed of the Westin Europa & Regina hotel in Venice and the Westin Palace in Milan, for an undisclosed fee, marking the seventh exit out of the eight properties in the portfolio.

The JV purchased the portfolio in October 2015 for €420 million, and has raised a total of €550 million through the sale of the seven properties.

The assets have been prepared for “major refurbishments” which will be completed by the new owner and Algonquin, which will act as asset manager.

In addition, the JV implemented a bespoke asset management plan in order to optimise revenue management.

According to Benson Elliot, the firm entered the PEH portfolio on behalf of its €700 million Benson Elliot Real Estate Partners IV fund. The firm expected to capitalise on forecast strong operational growth.

Trish Barrigan, senior partner at Benson Elliot, said: “We’ve been pleased with the early performance improvements and consequent quick realisations and strong returns achieved on the PEHs portfolio.”

“The Venice and Milan properties are two desirable hotels, located in cities which attract a high and growing volume of visitor demand. The JV has added significant value to these properties, and set out a plan for further value enhancement, making them highly attractive investment propositions.”

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