Incentive Newsline: Fairmont Ventures Into Europe

Fairmont Hotels & Resorts is “serious about expansion into Europe,” according to Warren Markwart, vice president of development for the Toronto-based chain.
    So far, the company has two properties across the pond. In December 2004, Fairmont entered into a joint venture with Kingdom Hotels International and the Halifax Bank of Scotland to invest in luxury hotels in key European markets; shortly afterward, the chain made its first purchase: The 619-room Monte Carlo Grand hotel in Monaco, which will be reflagged next month as the Fairmont Monte Carlo.
    In January, Fairmont took over management of the 263-room Savoy in London. The venerable hotel is the flagship of the former Savoy Group chain and has been reflagged The Savoy, a Fairmont Hotel.
    Both European properties plan to undergo renovations this year.
    Markwart said the joint- venture group is looking to acquire other resort or city hotels in Europe that would be good fits for the incentive and group market. “We have a beachhead in the north and one in the south; everything else in between is fair game,” he said.