M&C bringing iconic Biltmore to Mena region

Lakhraim…filling a luxury gap

MILLENNIUM & Copthorne hotels has added Biltmore to its portfolio of brands and the first management agreement for a Biltmore Hotel in Mena has been signed for the Al Bateen area of Abu Dhabi, UAE, with the property expected to open in 2013.

Ali Lakhraim, president and CEO of Millennium & Copthorne Hotels and Resorts, said: 'The Millennium & Copthorne hotels today constitute several brands and we feel that, with the Biltmore brand, we can fill the gap of unique, luxury offering that this market needs.'

The original Biltmore Hotel in Hollywood is an Art Deco design icon and has been the setting of many of Hollywood’s most memorable scenes.

As the brand is brought to the Middle East, it will stay true to its glamorous past and draw on its rich heritage.

Lakhraim believes the region is still underdeveloped when it comes to luxury offerings.

'Don’t look at Dubai alone when you talk about the region. The region is vast and guests are looking for different brands and different hospitality themes,' he said.

'The Biltmore Abu Dhabi will also be the first Biltmore hotel outside of Los Angeles, US. It will be glamorous and will attract not only the Arab guests from across the region but also the niche international visitors, who know the Biltmore brand.

'The Biltmore comes with history like no other luxury hotel anywhere in the world. It is unique in its positioning and quite popular on the West Coast (of America). The name Biltmore is synonymous with luxury and will be limited to a very few gateway cities across the world, not exceeding 30-35 hotels globally.'

The next announcement will be that of the Biltmore London and the company expects to also bring the brand to key Asian cities including Singapore, which is the home of Millennium & Copthorne.

The magnificent Biltmore in Los Angeles

The addition of the Biltmore brand to the company’s portfolio is a significant move for the rapidly-growing Millennium & Copthore, which is due to add 12 new properties to its portfolio of 12 operating hotels this year, with 52 signed management agreements in the pipeline. The hotel group expects to triple its size in the Middle East and North Africa in less than three years.

'Across our brands, we continue to see strong growth in the Mena region and the addition of a new brand adds another string to our bow as we build momentum for further expansion and increase in market share,' said Lakhraim.