ALG, AMResorts Puts Major Focus On European Expansion
Bruce Parkinson, Open Jaw
AMResorts' Secrets Akumal.
Apple Leisure Group (ALG) has announced that it plans to grow its European portfolio to 35 hotels and 10,000 rooms across the continent by 2021, while continuing to expand operations in the Caribbean and Mexico with its AMResorts subsidiary.
Speaking at the Spanish tourism fair FITUR, executives shared that the company’s expansion into Europe was a natural next step in its aggressive growth strategy and allowed ALG to capitalize on its existing relationships with hotel companies and tour operators it already partners with to sell its resorts in Mexico and the Caribbean.
ALG also announced that it closed 2018 with more than 22,000 rooms in its open resort portfolio and an additional 12,000 in development, following another year of double-digit growth.
The vertically-integrated company now boasts 63 open resorts, and 25 in its development pipeline, in 11 countries across eight brands. The company’s aggressive expansion will continue in 2019 as it enters new markets across Europe, as well as in popular destinations throughout Mexico, the Caribbean and Central America.
“2018 marked another year of tremendous growth for ALG as investor appetite for international hotel development only continues to increase,” said Javier Coll, Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer of Apple Leisure Group, who is responsible for the company’s business operations in Europe.
In DEC 2018, ALG announced the signing of an agreement to purchase a majority share in Alua Hotels & Resorts, a major Spanish hotel chain. With this transaction, ALG will now manage more than 4,000 rooms in Spain and have the structure and capacity to manage hotel properties throughout Europe.
As part of the agreement, Javier Águila, founder and CEO of Alua Hotels & Resorts, assumed the role of President of Apple Leisure Group Europe, and will work to adapt the AMResorts brands to the European market with the goal of growing with a unique offering for the market.
“Due to our partnership with Alua, we have been able to enter the European market quickly and strategically,” said Alex Zozaya, CEO of ALG. The group has started the year managing 16 hotels, 12 of which are in operation under the Alua Hotels & Resorts brand. Through ALG’s partnership with GIHSA, the company will open Secrets Mallorca Villamil Resort & Spa in March 2019, followed by an event in June in Palma de Mallorca to officially launch the four hotels under AMResorts’ brands.
“The addition of Alua Hotels & Resorts as the newest brand in our ever-growing AMResorts collection is the strategic next step in ALG’s European expansion,” said Jordi de las Moras, Managing Director of Apple Leisure Group, Europe. “This acquisition gives us a robust platform with more hotel rooms, an expanded team, solid marketing structure, and the ability to negotiate future hotel deals across Europe.”
While ALG has its eyes on key European markets, the company is also reinforcing its presence in popular beachfront destinations where it already has a strong foothold. ALG recently announced development of Breathless Tulum Resort & Spa, in partnership with Grupo Hotelero Santa Fe. Scheduled to open in 2021, the 300-suite resort will mark the fifth property for the Breathless Resorts & Spas brand.
Bruce Parkinson Editor-in-Chief
An observer and analyst of the Canadian and international travel industries for over 25 years, Bruce uses the pre-dawn hours to prepare a daily news and information package to keep industry members up to date.