Marriott expected to sell for $100M plus


As published in the Cayman Compass: 5 FEBRUARY, 2015

A buyer is being sought for the Marriott Hotel on Seven Mile Beach. – PHOTO: TANEOS RAMSAY

One of Grand Cayman’s biggest hotels, the 295-room Marriott Beach Resort on Seven Mile Beach, is expected to sell for upwards of US$100 million after going on the market last week.

More than $15 million has been spent on the hotel over the last two years, including extensive renovations to the guest rooms and, most recently, a complete refit of the lobby and restaurants.

Marriott Hotels has a long-term contract to market and manage the property and the resort will remain part of the Marriott brand.

Christian Charre, of CBRE Hotels, the Los Angeles-based commercial real estate firm engaged to sell the property, said there had already been significant interest from potential buyers.

The U.S.-based GenCom group bought the hotel in 2006. Florida-based Private Equity Group injected a substantial amount of capital into the property in 2011.

Both companies are selling their holdings, according to CBRE, which is a Fortune 500 company.

Mr. Charre said, “It is a highly desired property. It has been very recently renovated and comes with an established brand. Basically, you are buying into a brand new Marriott.

“The Cayman Islands is set apart from the other islands in the region as a desirable location.

“The market will decide the price, but we expect it to be higher than $100 million.”

A spokeswoman for the Marriott property team said the resort had broken all-time records for occupancy, average daily rates and revenues, despite being in the midst of renovations in 2013 and 2014.

“The outlook for the hotel is better than ever and we are poised to have the best high season in its history,” she said.

She confirmed that the Marriott would continue to manage the hotel following the sale.

In a press statement to market the property, Paul Weimer, vice president of CBRE Hotels, said, “This a fantastic opportunity for a value-add investor to capitalize on strong market fundamentals and acquire the most desirable resort in Grand Cayman at a significant discount to replacement cost. There are also no more developable tracts of land on Seven Mile beach, making this a truly irreplaceable property.”

The marketing statement indicated the hotel was built in 1990 and highlights renovations over the past two years, including improvements to guest rooms, lobby, restaurants, indoor and outdoor function spaces, fitness center, and beach bar.