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The Mitchell Companies Appoint Sol Meliá to
Take Over Management of the Royal Palm
a Crown Plaza Resort in Miami Beach
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Property to be Repositioned and Rebranded to Meliá Royal Palm 

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Miami, FL June 27, 2005 – Sol Meliá will be managing the Royal Palm Hotel in South Beach announced Guy Mitchell, president of The Mitchell Companies - principal investor in the property.  The hotel, currently known as the Royal Palm a Crown Plaza Resort, will undergo a multi million-dollar refurbishment to be completed by the end of 2005 and branded as Meliá Royal Palm.  Sol Meliá will take over management of the hotel on July 1, 2005 and will operate it as the Royal Palm hotel until the renovations are complete. 

This oceanfront resort is located in Miami Beach on 1545 Collins Avenue in the heart of South Beach. It is steps away from Lincoln Road and Ocean Drive, renowned restaurants, outdoor cafés, designer specialty shops and Miami’s hottest nightclubs.

“We are extremely excited about bringing the Meliá brand to South Beach,” stated Andre P Gerondeau, executive vice president North America and the Caribbean for Sol Melia Hotels and Resorts.  “Meliá Hotels have been extremely successful in major cities and this will bring the success and the high level of energy of the brand into the states.  The new look will give the Meliá Royal Palm this dynamic feel combined with the eclectic mix of Sol Meliá’s lifestyles and infuse it with a new, fresh contemporary concept that will envelop the passion by design of the Meliá brand.” 

“The Meliá Royal Palm joins Sol Meliá’s portfolio as our fourth market in the U.S., Chicago, New York and Puerto Rico being the others,“ Gerondeau added.  “As part of our strategic plan for growth into the American market, we plan to have 10 properties in the next five years through partnerships and/or management agreements. “

Sol Meliá currently ranks as the third largest hotel company in Europe and the largest resort company in the world, with success in major cities such as Madrid, London, Sao Paulo and Mexico City.  Sol Meliá will be key in the repositioning of the Royal Palm, offering a worldwide network of sales and marketing through regional offices in 15 countries around the globe.  Its strong relationships and preferred agreements with both offline and online intermediaries will bring the Royal Palm access to thousands of distribution channels.   Its loyalty programs for clients (MaS) and travel agents (Club Amigos) offer a strong database and alliances with numerous airlines and other redemption partners.

The hotel, which consists of two towers totaling 417 rooms, will undergo a considerable investment to create a totally new design, including a new signature restaurant and bar.  Located right on the ocean, the Meliá Royal Palm will feature all the amenities and services expected by both the luxury leisure and business traveler, including meeting and banquet space, a first-class, full-service spa with 10 treatment rooms as well as outdoor treatment areas and a first rate workout facility.

“There will be a complete repositioning of the property,” stated Graham Downes, CEO of Graham Downes Architecture, San Diego, CA. “The property is a historic hotel therefore the changes will not be done to the exterior, but rather through the furnishings and atmosphere of the hotel.  We want to make this a place that people will put on the top of their list when looking to stay in South Florida by modernizing current lifestyle trends and giving them all the amenities and services they are looking for.”

The lobby of the hotel will move to a larger area in the heart of the hotel, while the current check-in area will be converted into a martini bar at night and a water bar during the day. 

“The atmosphere of the hotel will be totally different by day than by night,” added Downes.  “For example, guests will be coming to the property to be recharged by the pool or in the spa during the day and then experience a high-energy scene at night.”

The outdoor area will have a wading pool with steps leading into the main pool and will be surrounded with cabanas for the guests.  An outdoor bar will create a vibrant space and a great evening bar scene.  A second pool will be built on the second floor, connected to a private lounging area with incredible views of the beach. The meetings facilities will be located on the second floor and will have state of the art equipment.

The rooms will receive new furnishings with cleaner lines and will have saturated and intense colors. All rooms will be equipped with the latest technologies such as flat screen TVs, DVD/CD players and free high-speed LAN Internet connections and wireless. 

Of the 417 rooms, 167 will be converted into condo-hotel units, with the remaining 250 to be used as traditional hotel rooms and suites. 

Sol Meliá Hotels & Resorts is one of the world’s most successful hotel companies, managing five distinctive brands – Meliá Hotels, Tryp Hotels, Sol Hotels, Paradisus Resorts and Hard Rock Hotel – totaling more than 350 hotels in 30 countries.

Contact:

Sol Meliá Hotels & Resorts
www.solmelia.com

Also See: R. Donahue Peebles Poised to Sell the Royal Palm Crowne Plaza Resort to The Falor Companies; Sale Would Mark End of a High-profile Venture / December 2004
R. Donahue Peebles Sells The Royal Palm Hotel for $127.5 million; The Falor Companies Sixth Hotel Acquisition in South Florida / December 2004
Donahue Peeble's Royal Palm Crowne Plaza Hotel Not Making Rent and Sales Tax Payments to Miami Beach / October 2002
Donahue Peebles Rose to Prominence in South Florida as the Country's First Black Developer of a Major Convention Hotel; Peebles Says He's Tired of that Distinction / July 2004
The Falor Companies Positions Itself Quickly as a Leader in the Condo-hotel Industry; Will Close $1.2 billion in Hotel Acquisitions by the End of 2005 / October 2004


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