MBW puts the Howard hotel on the market for £75m

17 September 2004
MBW puts the Howard hotel on the market for £75m

Property firm Marylebone Warwick Balfour (MWB), which owns the Malmaison hotel chain, has put its five-star London hotel the Howard on the market for around £75m.

It bought the trophy hotel for around £45m in April 2000 from Raffles International, whose Swissôtel division has managed the property since.

"The market for hotels has improved and more and more people are interested in hotels," explained MWB chief executive Richard Balfour-Lynn.

The value of the hotel has benefited from an 18-month refurbishment programme, estimated to have cost £20m, which included the addition of two extra floors.

"We have transformed the Howard, trade is good, and we have probably done as much as we can do with the hotel," Balfour-Lynn said.

He said there had already been a lot of interest from hotel investors - but not, as reported in the newspapers, from venture capitalists.

Balfour-Lynn expected a sale to take between six to nine months to complete.

by Angela Frewin

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