SBG releases new USA Upscale Hotel Fund and plans for first hotel conversion in Washington DC

SBG has released a new Hotel Fund – the SBG (USA) Upscale Hotel Fund. Established to gain exposure to $USD assets and meet strong client demand, the objective is to develop a USD 1bn hotel portfolio over 3-5 years.

The new Fund builds on the expertise and success of the SBG Hotel Group in Australia and further strengthens the Group’s partnership with IHG.

The SBG (USA) Upscale HotelFund will invest in existing hotels across the USA and refurbish and rebrand them to Crowne Plaza Hotels, supporting long-term partner, InterContinental Hotel Group’s (IHG) vision for Crowne Plaza to become the leading hotel brand in the US for business travellers through its US$200 Million Accelerate Program.

The SBG (USA) Upscale Hotel Fund has already raised the initial USD$36.5M funding needed tosecure its first investment, acquiring the Washington DC-Greenbelt Marriott Hotel in July. The hotel will be refurbished and fully converted to Crowne Plaza by early 2019.

Managing Director of SBG Group, Mr. Paul Salter said,“The strategy for the new SBG (USA) Upscale Hotel Fund is to leverage IHG’s focus on improving the Crowne Plaza brand in the USA. As the biggest Crowne Plaza owner in Australia and a successful track record of Crowne Plaza refurbishments including the recent AUD$25 Million upgrade of Crowne Plaza Melbourne’s 402 guest rooms, it’s a clear and natural progression for the Group to build on this in the USA.”


IHG’s Crowne Plaza Brand & Accelerate Program:

The Crowne Plaza brand is very well regarded across Europe and Asia, where it is considered a 4.5 and 5-star offering, however its image and hotel quality has been inconsistent in the USA. Over two years, IHG will invest USD $200M through its Accelerate Program to raise both the quality of product and brand reputation in the US, and as part of this program, are committed to working collaboratively with SBG and its Upscale Fund.


Key Partners:

Investors in the SBG Upscale Fund will partner with a strong team, led by SBG, and including IHG and Valor Hospitality Partners, who together have a proven track record in the refurbishment, reinvigoration and operation of Crowne Plaza Hotels, both in the USA and Australia.


Crowne Plaza Washington DC-Greenbelt Conversion Plans:

The SBG (USA) Upscale Hotel Fund completed its first investment in late July, with the USD$22M acquisition of the 284 room Greenbelt Marriott Hotel, which will be renovated and repositioned as Crowne Plaza Greenbelt.

Strategically located within 13 miles from Washington DC and close to major Government agencies, the hotel benefits from the demand generated by the IRS, FDA, NASA, The Pentagon and the Goddard Space Flight Centre.

Guests of the hotel have easy access to a wide variety of leisure and entertainment activities including Washington DC’s famed National Mall to see the Smithsonian Museums, the newly opened MGM Grand Casino at National Harbor with their nine world-class restaurants, the NFL’s Washington Redskins’ home at FedEx Field in nearby Landover, Maryland; the NHL’s Washington Capitals at Capital One Arena in Downtown D.C. and the Tanger Outlets at National Harbor which offers over 160 brand-name and designer retail stores.

The hotel is also close walking distance from the Greenbelt Metro and is serviced by three Washington metro area airports – one national and two international.

The current Hotel has 10,000 square feet and 14 different rooms of meetings and event space and two food & beverage outlets, providing an ideal platform for refurbishments that will create a significant value uplift. These include an enhanced and consolidated food & beverage offering in the ground floor lobby area with bar, restaurant and function space,and a focussed Meetings, Incentives, Conferences & Exhibitions (MICE) offering with advanced Audio Visual facilities, targeting business travellers in the highly competitive Washington DC market.

The US$14.5 million renovation of the Hotel and conversion to Crowne Plaza Washington DC-Greenbelt is due to commence in early 2019. The hotel will remain fully operational.

If you are interested in finding out more about investing in SB&G’s (USA) Upscale Hotel Fund, please contact us.