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 Raffles International Signs Management Contract for the 150 room
Swissôtel Ankara; Michel Van der Elst Appointed GM
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SINGAPORE, 14 December 2005 – Raffles International has today signed a management contract with Gulsan Insaat, Sanayi, Turizm, Nakliyat ve Ticaret A.S., to manage a new hotel development in Ankara under the Swissôtel brand. The 150-room deluxe hotel will be named Swissôtel Ankara and is scheduled to open in April 2006. 

The new Swissôtel Ankara marks Raffles International’s further expansion into Turkey. The group already operates Swissôtel The Bosphorus in Istanbul and Swissôtel Göcek Marina & Spa Resort, with two additional projects currently under development in Bursa and Izmir. With the signing of Swissôtel Ankara, Raffles International’s worldwide portfolio grows to 40 hotels and resorts in 35 destinations. 

Mr Meinhard Huck, Managing Director of Swissôtel Hotels & Resorts, commented: “Turkey’s phenomenal growth in the tourism sector has greatly contributed to the success of our two existing Swissôtel properties in Istanbul and Göcek. Riding on this success, we are indeed delighted and look forward to the opening of Swissôtel Ankara in the Turkish Capital. Swissôtel Ankara will deliver the finest in Swiss hospitality with its exquisite hotel facilities, and warm, efficient service. It will no doubt complement the expected increase in tourist arrivals to Turkey, given the growing demands for more exotic vacations and event venues. We are also honoured that Gulsan Insaat, Sanayi, Turizm, Nakliyat ve Ticaret A.S. has entrusted us to manage its new development in Ankara.” 

Mr Sefik Gül, Chairman of Gulsan Insaat, Sanayi, Turizm, Nakliyat ve Ticaret A.S., added: “The Swissôtel brand name has gained a reputation in Turkey for offering exceptional standards of hospitality and service. We are confident that Swissôtel Ankara, managed by Raffles International under the Swissôtel brand, will be a popular accommodation of choice for business and leisure travelers alike. It will also be a very attractive facility which will enhance the hotel landscape of Ankara.” 

Swissôtel Ankara is located in Cankaya, a prime city location within the vicinity of the presidential palace and international embassies. The hotel offers easy access to the city centre, with all major shopping streets, cafes and restaurants within walking distance. Swissôtel Ankara is approximately 45 minutes from Esenboga airport. 

The hotel will have 150 elegantly appointed guest rooms and suites equipped with the latest state-of-the-art technology and featuring an extensive range of amenities and services. An exclusive Executive Lounge will also be available for the business traveller. 

Hotel facilities include three food and beverage outlets, offering a wide range of international and local specialities. For the growing MICE (meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions) market, the property features a meeting and conference area, with a 900sqm grand ballroom, seven meeting rooms and a spacious foyer with a capacity of up to 1500 persons. The conference and meeting areas will be equipped with the latest audiovisual systems, including simultaneous translation booths, 24-hour technical support on site, and a business centre with full secretarial services.  

For total relaxation and recreation, the Amrita Spa offers a range of rejuvenating spa treatments and the traditional Turkish bath. There is also a wellness centre featuring an Olympic sized indoor swimming pool as well as a well-equipped gym. 

The hotel will also offer an underground parking garage, accommodating up to 200 cars, with a valet parking service available. 

Mr Michel Van der Elst has been appointed as the General Manager of Swissôtel Ankara. Mr Van der Elst has been with Swissôtel Hotels & Resorts for many years now and was formerly the Resident Manager of Swissôtel The Bosphorus in Istanbul and the Area Controller in the Middle East. 

About Gulsan Insaat, Sanayi, Turizm, Nakliyat ve Ticaret A.S. 

Dating back to 1970, Gulsan Construction, the flagship company of Gulsan Group, has become one of the most prominent firms operating in Turkey. Initially specialising in civil projects, the company’s experienced staff, distinguished machinery park and robust economic structure has enabled it to diversify its operations into the construction of bridges, motorways and viaducts as well as the production of ready mix concrete and precast beams across the country over the past three decades. 

In order to meet ready mix concrete and pre-cast beam demands, various plants have been established in the Bursa and Gebze-Izmir sites. The total turnover of the company, including finished highway and viaduct projects for the last five years, was approximately US$500 Million. The construction and improvement of Bursa Peripheral, Gebze-Sile and Gebze Izmit Motorways are among the major domestic works that have been executed by the company. 

Encouraged by its domestic success, Gulsan has ventured into foreign markets such as Libya, Kazakhstan, Iraq, Ukraine, Afghanistan and a number of Gulf countries. Furthermore, the company has been awarded five highway projects in Afghanistan, two of which are still under construction. In Ukraine, Gulsan has been carrying out a number of high-class residential and business complex projects as a direct investor. 

Taking into account Turkey’s developing profile, the Group has decided to redirect its investment towards tourism, particularly in Antalya and Ankara with three 5-star-hotels. 

As part of its restructuring efforts, the Group founded Gulsan Real Estate Development & Investment for the execution of domestic and foreign residential projects. 

Throughout the company’s history, and across all levels of the corporation, Gulsan has remained value-driven. Embracing professional quality awareness, Gulsan has been certified with ISO 9001. Investing in the future, Gulsan acts in compliance with all environmental standards and illustrates an excellent example of environmental sensitivity.  

Swissôtel Hotels & Resorts (www.swissotel.com ) is a distinctive group of deluxe hotels for today’s discerning modern business and leisure traveler. It combines individual, modern and functional design with local character and renowned standards of Swiss hospitality, service efficiency and product quality. Located in gateway destinations and city centers, the hotels offer convenient access to business and shopping districts and local attractions. Many of the 26 hotels in Swissôtel's worldwide portfolio have won prestigious awards and accolades.  

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Contact:

Ms Philomena Ang 
Tel (65) 6430 1155 
Email: philomena.ang@raffles.com

Swissôtel Ankara 
Mr Michel Van der Elst 
General Manager 
Pre Opening Office; 
Yildizevler Mahallesi 
21 Sokak No 2 
06550 Cankaya Ankara, Turkey 
Tel: + 90 312 442 5175/76 
Fax: + 90 312 442 51 82 
Email: michel.vanderelst@swissotel.com 

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Also See: Radisson SAS Opens Second Hotel in Turkey, the 153 room Radisson SAS Hotel, Ankara / July 2004


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