Starwood Capital Group, headed by hotel king Barry Sternlicht, founder of the Starwood Hotels empire and the W Hotels, plans to expand its reach to the Mainland and Hong Kong after raising a war chest of $2 billion.
In a five-year plan, Starwood Capital plans more than 20 new properties under the ‘Baccarat’ and ‘1’ hotel and residences brands either through management agreements, equity investments or by forming joint ventures with domestic developers.
Barry Sternlicht, who created the Baccarat Hotel and Resorts brand in 2007, said his confidence in the Mainland was bolstered by the good response to the sale of Baccarat Residences Shanghai, which was managed by the group.
Fifteen units at the Baccarat Residences East Tower have been sold at between RMB 80,000 and RMB 100,000 per square meter before the official launch. Added to previous sales, 140 of the 154 units at East Tower have now been sold.
Hotels reports that so far, the group had no direct investment in the Mainland property market but Starwood Capital had bought about 3% of Jinjiang International Hotels Development, the mainland’s largest hotel operator, before it listed in 2006.