• Menzies shows private equity still has teeth

Menzies Hotels has bought eight Thistle Hotels for £54m from Curzon Hotel Properties. The hotels, placed on the market in April, were part of the 28 bought by Curzon for around £400m.

This purchase by Menzies, which is owned by the Tchenguiz Family Trust, the investment vehicle of Robert Tchenguiz, demonstrates that private deals are still being crunched where debt raising is more manageable.

Menzies was bought by Tchenguiz in October last year and, with its latest buy, it has 23 hotels, all in the UK. It plans to spend £12m uprating the hotels.

“Our existing hotels continue to enjoy buoyant trading and we are confident that these new hotels will provide the company with a significant return on investment,” said Menzies’ chief executive Tim Penter.

Meanwhile, Thistle said sales were up 26.5% to £196.1m for the year to June 30. Occupancy in London was up from 77.2% to 79.6% and rate was £95.60 against £81.90 last year. Figures for the provinces were more subdued, with occupancy up from 69.8% to 71.1% and rate was £60.30 against £58.10 previously.

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