Dubai’s Yassat Gloria Hotel Apartments will be rebranded Mercure Dubai Barsha Heights Hotel Suites and Apartments on May 19 – creating the world’s largest Mercure property.
Accorhotels aims to complete the renovation of all 1,015 units (408 one- and two-bedroom suites and 607 apartments) by the end of 2018, although the hotel will remain operational in the interim.
In the first phase, 120 rooms will receive contemporary upgrades and the second will see new rooms and facilities with a view to repositioning the hotel as a five-star property.
Olivier Granet, managing director and chief operating officer of AccorHotels, said it continues to pursue an “asset-light” strategy and this property will be managed under a franchise agreement.
“We operate one hotel with this owner in the UAE and some properties outside the region – and this owner made the acquisition of the Gloria hotels,” he said, in reference to owner N.A. Aliyev.
It’s a bold move from the French group which already operates 38 UAE properties, with 22 under development.
Mercure’s Dubai representation has been limited to a hotel on Al Mina Road – another deal has been signed for Jumeirah Village Triangle – but this will take the brand to a new level; internationally its presence is strong with 740 hotels.
“The classification isn’t our major driver, our commitment is to bring additional quality to the property,” said Granet. “We believe there’s a strong potential with Mercure and we can do much more.”
The renovated property will contain a new speciality restaurant and more than 400sqm meeting room space.
Accor’s takeover of FRHI Hotels & Resorts, together with Marriott’s acquisition of Starwood, makes it harder for independent operators to compete with major operators’ large distribution networks.