PALMA DE MALLORCA, Spain, Sept. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Sol Melia, one of the world's largest hotel chains, announced today plans to operate its first hotel in the U.S. with the Melia Atlanta, a 502-room hotel formerly operated by Marriott as the Renaissance Atlanta Hotel Downtown. Marking the beginning of its strategy to develop additional properties in the continental U.S., the Spanish brand plants its flag on the Atlanta market taking over the hotel operations on October 15, 2010. The new Melia Atlanta will enjoy a $35 million dollar renovation to be completed by 2013, allowing the property to feature proprietary elements of Melia Hotels & Resorts, Sol Melia's largest brand.
Located at the edge of Atlanta's downtown business district and perfectly suited for business travelers and leisure guests, the new Melia Atlanta will set the footprint for Sol Melia's expansion within the continental U.S. It will enable the company to tap into a new market while gaining consumer and guest visibility in a major urban metropolis, helping the brand win name recognition nationally. "We are thrilled to take over such hotel operations and open the Melia Atlanta," said Gabriel Escarrer Jaume, the Co-Vice President & CEO of Sol Melia Hotels and Resorts. "I believe venturing into this particular market will help with the development of numerous projects the Sol Melia chain wants to develop in the U.S. within the next few years."
The Melia brand, known for combining the Spanish passion for service with cutting-edge design and contemporary elegance chose this Atlanta landmark to be the first Melia experience within the continental U.S. due to its privileged setting. "The unique quality of this location will ensure that the Melia Atlanta Hotel will become a great destination in its own right," stated Henk Habers, President of WingField Group, the real estate entity behind the project.
Sol Melia is implementing an intensive expansion strategy, as a result of its brand equity policy, which has allowed its portfolio to expand in the world's most dynamic markets such as Asia, where the company has been operating for the last 25 years, the Emirates and European capitals and coasts, where it is overall the third leading hotel company.
In the Americas, Sol Melia now covers destinations such as: Mexico, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica. Due to the fact that the United States is a key feeder market for the region the Melia brand has a strong desire to plant a flag in the continental U.S. Additionally, Sol Melia recently sold one of its midscale brands, TRYP, to Wyndham Hotel Group, as part of a strategic alliance including a joint development for the new "TRYP by Wyndham" brand within the main markets, including the U.S.
The Melia Atlanta will pave the way for the expansion plans of the Spanish company within the U.S.: the hotel will be a modern urban property with great accessibility to public transportation via the MARTA North Ave. Station, Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, conveniently located near the Georgia Tech campus, while boasting more than 30,000-square feet of meeting & conference facilities. Amenities which will be completed as part of the multi-million dollar renovation include the 4th floor pool deck featuring extraordinary city views and a fitness center, in addition to Melia's renowned F&B concepts, as agreed between Fundus America, the Hotel's owner, and the Sol Melia Group.
About Sol Melia
Sol Melia was founded in 1956 in Palma de Mallorca (Spain) and is one of the world's largest resort hotel chains, as well as Spain's leading hotel chain in both the business and leisure markets. It currently provides more than 300 hotels in 26 countries on 4 continents under its brands: Gran Melia, Melia, ME by Melia, Innside by Melia, Tryp, Sol, Paradisus and Sol Melia Vacation Club. www.solmelia.com
About WingField Group
WingField Group is a Real Estate development and corporate finance company with its headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, and U.S. offices in St. Paul, Minnesota. WingField was created as a result of the merger of two professional companies: Johnson Financial (financial engineering and real estate investments), Archipel (consulting, conception and development in the hotel and leisure industry).
WingField Corporation has extensive experience in hospitality driven real estate development and investments with a focus on luxury-life style projects. Its client and partner network extends to corporate entities, international institutional as well as private investors, financial institutions and industry experts.
SOURCE Sol Melia