The new Mega Resorts: Positive Signs for the Holiday Industry?

A recent feature in RCI Ventures Magazine highlights the fact that a number of new “mega” holiday resorts currently being developed could be very positive signs for the hotel and holiday industries.

The feature spotlights four of the world’s biggest multi-billion dollar destination resorts which are being developed in Spain, in Mallorca, Macau and the Caribbean.
One of them, developed by Las Vegas Sands Corporation will be built in Spain and the company is spending a cool $35 billion on developing gaming resorts in other destinations, including Macau.

Sheldon Adelson, CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corporation, said his company is planning twelve integrated resorts with 3,000 rooms each and he told Reuters that the massive Spanish development will be like a mini Las Vegas, “about half the size of the Las Vegas Strip”.

With a ten year schedule for completing the project, Adelson says it will give the Eurozone time to make an economic recovery.

Meanwhile, top hotelier and timeshare specialist Meliá Hotels International is refurbishing its hotels in the popular resort of Magaluf in Mallorca, a popular resort many Britons will know well.

The project, referenced as Calviá Beach Resort by Sol Hotels, will inject the area with Meliá’s luxury brand appeal and the international hotel group hopes the newly branded properties will help to extend the typical six month holiday season in Mallorca further, ideally to nine months of the year or more.

Mark Hoddinott, Meliá Hotels International’s executive VP of leisure real estate, said the ‘repositioning’ of Sol Melia’s hotel mix in Magaluf (which lies on the southwestern coast of the island of Mallorca) was important as the aim is to encourage guests with ‘a higher purchasing power’ to visit the area.

The RCI Ventures report says the Mallorcan authorities are keen to see the Magaluf area renewed, too. Calviá Beach Resort will include four, 4-star hotels: the 329-room Sol Antillas, the 428-room Sol Barbados (both aimed at families), an adult-orientated hotel, Beach House by Sol, which will have 210 rooms, and finally, a surf-themed, 182-room property, aptly named Sol Wave House. Beach House by Sol and Sol Wave House are owned by a joint venture between Meliá and real estate investor Evertaas.

Magaluf will even get its own Nikki Beach, the legendary beach club created by the Florida brand which operates its chill out beach clubs all over the world. Nikki Beach in Marbella is one of the Costa del Sol’s most sought-after beach destinations during the summer, and one of the places for celebrity spotting.

Gabriel Escarrer, CEO of Meliá Hotels International explained to RCI Ventures that: "As partners in this project, Wave House and Nikki Beach ensure the high quality that we want for Magaluf as well as for our Sol Hotels brand and will be a decisive boost to the revaluation and the image of this important area of Mallorca."

Commenting in the RCI Ventures Magazine feature, industry expert and MD of hospitality consulstancy HVS Philip Bacon noted that mega resort projects can have “a massive impact on the market in a relatively short period of time”.

He added, “These projects are relevant both in terms of the regeneration of tourism assets that have effectively reached the end of their useful economic lives, as well as for the building of new integrated resorts that have a “gravitational pull” on business and leisure tourism, bringing in high levels of newly-induced demand from an area much wider than the immediate surroundings of the project. The bigger the project, the greater the pull.”

The Meliá branded Magaluf hotels are due to open in June. The Mallorca-based hotel group is a global leader in the hotel and timeshare industry and operates 300 properties in 30 countries and has recently been expanding in South America as well as London. One of its latest properties, ME London, also opens next month.

The leading Spanish hotel brand also runs a successful timeshare division, Club Meliá by Meliá Hotels International, which offers members a diverse portfolio of luxury resorts around the world. Meliá’s Options Membership is a points-based programme and members can choose a flexible Option plan tailored to their holiday lifestyle.

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