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5 things to know: 3 April 2013
April 3 2013

• Hotel lenders show interest in Germany
• Trepp: US CMBS delinquencies edge higher in March
• Lawless: 2013 will be defining year for Jumeirah
• Singapore posts 2012 growth in tourism spend, visitors
• Pestana marks first entry into US market

The stable performance of Germany’s hotel sector is making it a prime target for hotel lending, financing experts report.

The country has been an island of relative safety in Europe, which has lenders feeling more comfortable about lending. Year-to-date through February, Germany’s occupancy increased 0.3% to 59.3%; average daily rate grew by 1.3% to €93.34 ($119.81); and revenue per available room was up 1.7% to €55.40 ($71.11), according to STR Global, sister company of

“Surveys show that there is still appetite for hotel investments, especially as the country is seen as … ‘real estate heaven,’” Oliver Gruss, senior director of Deutsche Pfandbriefbank, said in an email.

The delinquency rate for U.S. commercial mortgage-backed securities crept higher by 8 basis points to 9.5% during March, according to research company Trepp LLC.

Despite the increase, the rate overall has dropped by 84 basis points since it reached an all-time high of 10.34% in July 2012.

“A close examination of the data reveals that the weakening experienced in March is not nearly as worrisome as it seems,” Manus Clancy, senior managing director of Trepp, said in a news release. “The jump in the rate was caused primarily by a reversal of status of a number of floating rate hotel loans.”

Gerald Lawless, president and CEO of Jumeirah Hotels & Resorts, views 2013 as a defining year for the luxury hotel operator—a year in which the group will establish itself as a formidable player outside of its home base in Dubai, according to a report from’s Patrick Mayock.

When the Great Recession ground hotel development to a halt, Jumeirah had approximately 10 hotels in its portfolio. But with the recovery churning, that footprint has nearly doubled to 17.

“There’s a lot of interest in the brand. We’re receiving quite a number of enquiries. Certainly activity has really jumped in the last six to 12 months,” he said.

Tourism spending inched higher in Singapore during 2012, according to preliminary estimates by the Singapore Tourism Board.

A total 23 billion Singapore dollars ($18.6 billion) is estimated to have been spent last year, up 3.1% year over year. Of the 2012 total, hotels captured SG$5 billion ($4 billion), or 22% of the total spend. Hotel spending during 2011 accounted for 14% of tourism receipts.

Also, global visitor arrivals to Singapore increased as well. Singapore welcomed 14.4 million global visitors a year ago, up 9.1% from 2011. Year to date through the third quarter of 2012, the biggest percentage increase in visitors were arrivals from China, which increased by 23% to 1.5 million.

Driving its first stake in the U.S. hotel market is the Lisbon, Portugal-based Grupo Pestana, according to a report in the South Florida Business Journal.

The company has combined two art deco hotels to create the 97-room Pestana South Beach Art Deco Hotel in Miami. Pestana bought the properties for $9.5 million in 2009 and invested approximately $21 million in the renovations.

Pestana has 47 hotels in its global portfolio.

Compiled by Shawn A. Turner.

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