BUS-JUM-GROUP-ARCHIVE
Jumeirah Group, the Dubai-based luxury hotel company and member of Dubai Holding Image Credit: Gulf News archives

Dubai: The state-owned hotel brand Jumeirah is set announce major investments in key European cities in the coming months totalling upwards of $1 billion, as the company continues its agenda of rapid international expansion.

In the past year, the company has opened a hotel in Nanjing, China, with plans to open properties in Bali and Guangzhou this year, and in Hangzhou next year.

The company’s attention will shortly turn to Europe, according to CEO Jose Silva, as Jumeirah ramps up its plans to establish a presence in major cities across the continent.

£100m

renovation for Jumeirah’s flagship London hotel

“We have not made announcements in Europe, but we will be able, in the upcoming months, to show major investments in Europe, primary cities,” Silva told Gulf News in an interview on Monday.

“Investments [will be] in the billion dollar figure,” he added.

Jumeirah is said to be targeting cities such as Paris and Rome. Silva said he expected the company to make an announcement on its European expansion plans soon.

This September, the company will begin a six month, £100 million renovation of its flagship London hotel, Jumeirah Carlton. Silva said the renovation would help bolster its daily rate from around £350 per night, to upwards of £550 per night.

“It’s a bit commitment,” he said.

The company’s chief executive confirmed that Jumeirah was still hoping to open its first US hotel, but had yet to find the right asset.

London, Paris among cities targeted

“We’re still missing the US…and we’re looking at New York, Miami, and Los Angeles, with active discussions in those cities,” Silva added.

£550

a night from £350, rate upgrade after 6-month closure

Meanwhile, Zabeel House - the midscale Jumeirah subsidiary brand that first opened in Al Seef, down by the creek, and has since expanded to the Greens - will open in London’s trendy Shoreditch neighbourhood this year, with a further two properties in the pipeline.

One of these would like be located in Saudi Arabia, Silva said. He declined to state where the other would be.

The brand, which has been active since last year, is currently in the process of being spun off to sit under state-owned holding company Meraas, he added.

Since taking the reins as the head of Dubai’s flagship hotel brand last summer, Silva has also made dining a priority.

He hired Michael Ellis, the international director of restaurant rating guide Michelin, as the chief culinary officer, and has since scooped up Francky Semblat, Kim Joinie-Maurin and Kasper Kurdahl, who have a combined seven Michlin stars between them, to begin working at the Burj Al Arab’s restaurants.