US private equity and alternative assets investment firm HIG Capital Advisors LLC recently announced plans to further develop its hotel portfolio in Greece.
According to Inventio, the firm’s exclusive partner in Greece, HIG Capital is already in advanced discussions to acquire five hotels.
“Our goal for Greece is to create a portfolio of luxury hotels with a capacity of 6,000 rooms, while for Europe we aim to develop a collection of 10,000 rooms,” Inventio Managing Director Konstantinos Bitros said during a recent media briefing in Athens.
He added that three of the new hotels will be located on Crete, another on a popular Greek island and one more on a mainland destination.
The three hotels on Crete are expected to be an investment of some 200 million euros, of which 100 million will cover their acquisition and the remaining 100 million will be used for upgrade and renovation works.
HIG Capital recently acquired another hotel on Crete, the 4-star Aldiana Club Kreta located in Mochlos, Agios Nikolaos, which has a capacity of 150 rooms. According to Inventio, the hotel will see the addition of another 120 rooms, bringing the total to 370 rooms. The total amount of the project, including the price to acquire the hotel is estimated to exceed 50 million euros.
HIG already has nine hotels (3,500 rooms) in its Greek portfolio, which is known on the market as ELLA Resorts. The firm also intends to enhance the ELLA resorts portfolio with hotels from markets where it has a presence, such as Spain and Italy.
“We examine all opportunities to acquire new hotels that meet the specifications that we set,” Bitros said, adding that HIG invests in beach resorts that have or can reach a capacity of 200 rooms and focuses on acquiring properties in areas that have access to an airport.
“We are also keen on buying older properties that require a rebranding and do not shy away from creating new destinations,” he added.
HIG’s activity in the Greek hospitality sector began in 2018, when the private equity firm acquired South Tourism Enterprises S.A. (former Aldemar Rhodes, interests of the Angelopoulos family). Following a capital restructuring of the company through a shareholder buyout, HIG proceeded with the complete renovation of Aldemar’s two hotel units, with a capacity of 835 rooms and 2,500 beds. The total investment exceeded 100 million euros.
In 2019, HIG proceeded with the capital restructuring of Mayor Holdings S.A. on Corfu (interests of the Dimitriou family) and in 2022 proceeded to a shareholder buyout. Today, the complete renovation and expansion of the four hotel units (Mon Repos Palace Art Hotel, Capo Di Corfu, La Grotta Verde Grand Resort and Pelekas Monastery), with a capacity of 1,400 rooms and 2,500 beds, is underway. Estimated to exceed 120 million euros, works are expected to start next October and last two to three years.
In addition, HIG in 2022 acquired from three banks (Eurobank, Piraeus and Attica Bank) loans with a nominal value of 140 million euros of the Kypriotis hotel group. However, at the moment the firm does not include the group’s hotels in its portfolio as several legal disputes are pending.
A Florida–based private equity and alternative assets investment firm, HIG Capital was founded in 1993 and currently has $56 billion of equity capital under management. In Greece, besides having a presence in the hospitality industry, HIG capital is also active in the logistics sector.