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Month: July 2015

Dusit International, a leading Asian hospitality group, has entered into an agreement with South African-based eLan Property Group to manage several hotels and resorts in southern Africa and the Indian Ocean region. The agreement was signed in Franschhoek on July 26.

The agreement will see Dusit managing five hotels and resorts: two in South Africa, two in Mozambique and one in Mauritius. Dusit will also work closely with eLan Property Group on a regional hospitality education project.

Thai Minister of Commerce, General Chatchai Sarikalya, Dusit International CEO and MD, Chanin Donavanik; and CEO of eLan Property Group, Mark Taylor, were all present at the signing.

Dusit International has over 65 years’ experience in the hotel and hospitality field and comprises four hotel brands: Dusit Thani, dusitD2, Dusit Princess and Dusit Devarana. It also operates its own signature Devarana Spa.

Article Source: Tourism Update

Hilton Worldwide has signed a franchise agreement with Reliance Hotels to open Hilton Garden Inn Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi.  The hotel joins 11 Hilton Garden Inn properties already under development in Africa, including Hilton Garden Inn Abuja Airport, and is expected to open early in 2016.

The 171-guest room and suites hotel will be just two kilometres from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, just off Mombasa Road, the main road link between Nairobi and Mombasa, making it an ideal base for local, regional and international visitors.

“Agreeing our first Hilton Garden Inn for Kenya and adding a second airport location to our African portfolio, demonstrates how we are growing and evolving our presence across the continent with leading brands in convenient locations,” says Patrick Fitzgibbon, Senior VP of Development, Europe and Africa for Hilton Worldwide.

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Article Source:  Tourism Update
Interstate on the block? The Wall Street Journal reports that Thayer Lodging Group and Jin Jiang International Hotels Group Company are exploring a sale of Interstate Hotels & Resorts. According to the story, the owners hired investment bank Moelis & Company to market Interstate, which manages more than 460 hotels worldwide. The Wall Street Journal cited sources “familiar with the matter,” saying the company is “expected to fetch a price of more than $600 million.”
“We have no comment to media reports at this time. It remains business as usual for us and we are committed to continue driving the best results for our owners by the most experienced and talented individuals in the industry,” according to an emailed statement to HNN from Interstate.
This news comes on the heels of Travelodge (U.K.) mulling a $1-billion sale last week and a report that Strategic Hotels & Resorts is looking to sell.
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Article Source: Hotel News Now

The promotion and protection of the investment bill tabled on Tuesday “says nothing new and adds uncertainty”, according to the DA.

DA shadow minister of trade and industry, Geordin Hill-Lewis, criticised the bill which, in his view, is broad and generic and leaves important issues open to interpretation.

“The bill also gives the minister wide discretion over important areas of legal protection, like investor/State disputes. There are many crucial legal issues left out completely,” Hill-Lewis said in a statement, adding that the bill is silent on intellectual property.

“This bill simply will not assuage the many valid concerns that international investors have about the direction of Government policy in South Africa. It is poorly drafted and ambiguous, and it needs to be extensively ‘beefed up’ in the parliamentary process,” he said.

Hill-Lewis lauded the removal of a “custodianship” clause that was in the first version, and also the constitutional guarantee for the security of property.

The bill was tabled in Parliament by Minister of Trade and Industry Rob Davies following a public consultation process.

“Provides clarity”

According to Davies the bill seeks to promote investments and clarify the level of protection that an investor may expect in South Africa and ensure that the country remains open to foreign investment.

“The bill also aims to confirm Government’s right to pursue constitutionally-driven national development objectives and recognises the right of governments to regulate in the public interest,” Davies said in a statement.

“In addition, it promotes a balance between the rights and obligations of investors, ensures the equal treatment between foreign investors and domestic investors. It also provides clarity for the standards of protection applied to investment,” said Davies.

Davies also highlighted that the draft bill defines international investment law concepts such as national treatment, protection and security, and the transfer of funds in line with constitutional principles and applicable norms. It further confirms the right to property.

Hill-Lewis raised the concern that the bill introduces a limited form of international arbitration which is “only possible after the investor has ‘exhausted’ all other means of dispute resolution. This is not defined or specified”.

“International arbitration is only at a State-to-State level, which means the investor itself is not able to be involved in the dispute resolution. This is very unlikely to be adequate security for investors,” according to Hill-Lewis.

The parliamentary committee will conduct a public process during which interested stakeholders may submit comments on the promotion and protection of investment bill.

Article Source: Fin 24

Turkish Airlines will become the third major global hub carrier to introduce flights to the South African city of Durban, host of this year’s World Routes, after it revealed this week that it will introduce a continuation link to the coastal city on its already established Istanbul – Johannesburg route, likely from late October 2015. KwaZulu-Natal’s largest air gateway, King Shaka International Airport in Durban, is already served by Emirates Airline with direct flights to Dubai, while Qatar Airways has also announced the introduction of services to Doha, via Johannesburg.

Durban will be Turkish Airlines’ third destination in South Africa after Johannesburg and Cape Town. The airline first introduced flights into the country with a three times weekly joint operation to Johannesburg and onward to Cape Town from its Istanbul Ataturk International Airport hub in September 2007 but has grown to offer a daily service on the route, currently flown using an Airbus A330.

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Article & Image Source: Routes Online