TOURISM

French group invests in budget hotels

French group invests in budget hotels

French hotel investor and operator Boissee Finances is making a dynamic entry into a new tourism market in Athens that so far only short-term rentals have tapped.

In cooperation with Accor and its Ibis Budget and Ibis Styles brands, Boissee is investing 33.4 million euros in two new hotels –both three-star units – on Patission Street, opposite the National Archaeological Museum.

Its objective is to supply high-level hospitality services in modern facilities to guests visiting Greece on a low budget, aiming for archaeological, cultural and educational tourism. Students, pupils and other visitors to Athens who want to delve into what the city and its surroundings have to offer, especially in terms of history and culture, as well as young city break travelers, are among the new units’ target group; hence the choice close to Athens’ biggest museum.

That signals an expansion of investment in hotels beyond the popular city center and into the districts of Kypseli and Patissia, thereby contributing to the gradual upgrading of those areas. The two units will be under the same roof, at the Ibis Athens Museum Hotel. This is a set of buildings with a total area of 1,915 square meters, leased for the next 50 years.

“There is a great debate at an international level about more hotels in the budget category – i.e with two or three stars – such as our Ibis Budget and Ibis Styles,” a source from the French group explained to Kathimerini: “Investors often neglect that niche, while people believe that a budget hotel, being cheaper, will be of low quality. We want to prove the exact opposite with this investment: that a budget hotel, while being obviously cheaper, can and should offer very good quality both in terms of construction and aesthetics, and in terms of service,” the same source pledged.

Boasting 9,500 rooms in six European countries, Boissee Finances intends to develop a third unit in Athens later on, also as part of the Athens Ibis Museum Hotel. That third offering is set to take the sum of the investment far above 50 million euros – a particularly large amount considering it does not include the purchase of land nor much in the way of construction.