New look, new hotels and more for RIU in 2018


New look, new hotels and more for RIU in 2018
Of RIU (from left): Laura Malone, communications director; Senén Fornos, sales director for Spain, Latin America and Mexico; Pepe Moreno, executive director; Carlos Guindos, branding director.

Four new hotels, five major renovations and a new brand image are in store for RIU Hotels & Resorts this year, the company announced this week.

The year's openings will be kicked off with the presentation of the ClubHotel Riu Chiclana. The hotel, a favourite with families, located in Sancti Petri, Cádiz, will reopen in time for Easter after a complete renovation and new amenities, including a water park. Later, in April, the Riu Santa Fe located in Baja California, Mexico, will open, followed in June by the ClubHotel Riu Tequila, in Playa de Carmen. The Riu Palace Punta Cana will reopen in July, and the Riu Palace Tropical Bay, in Negril, Jamaica, will be presented in October.

The Riu Astoria, in Golden Sands, Bulgaria, will open in June with 530 rooms; the rest of the openings will be concentrated at the end of the year: the Riu Palace Boavista, on Boavista Island in Cape Verde, will open in early November, along with the Riu Palace Costa Mujeres, which will join the recently-opened Riu Dunamar, in Costa Mujeres, Mexico. The year will close with the December opening of the Riu Palace Baja California, located in Los Cabos, next to the Riu Santa Fe, giving RIU a total of three hotels at this Mexican destination.

RIU is currently studying opportunities in the leading cities of North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia, in keeping with its goal of expanding its Riu Plaza line of urban hotels. The brand already has two new projects in progress: the first hotel on the Spanish peninsula, located in the centre of Madrid in the Edificio España; and its second hotel in New York, a project that is underway in close proximity to Times Square.

RIU’s new image, described by the company as ‘more modern, fresher and warmer,’ will accompany the new style the hotel chain has been introducing in its hotels through major renovation projects and new openings.

The chain foresees changing the brand image in all the hotels over the next two years, introducing the new image in 50 per cent of its properties in 2018 and the remaining 50 per cent in 2019.

The updates follow a strong year for RIU, which posted €2.156bn in revenue, seven per cent more than in 2016, while investment in openings, renovations, and land and hotel acquisitions represented €200mn more than projected at the start of the year, totalling €600mn.

In 2019, the hotel chain is also looking to further expand in holiday destinations in Asia. Construction is already underway of two hotels in the Maldives that RIU will open in 2019, a pair of hotels located on two uninhabited islands linked by a bridge. The Riu Atoll will have all the services RIU All-Inclusive customers are accustomed to, while the Riu Palace Maldivas will offer a more luxurious and sophisticated option. Also underway is a first RIU hotel in Dubai, a grand 800-room hotel located on the Deira Islands, which will also open in 2019.

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