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Barclay brothers in talks to sell Ritz Hotel to Saudis, FT says
[SYDNEY]The Barclay brothers are in talks to sell London's 114-year-old Ritz Hotel to Sidra Capital, an investment group of wealthy Saudi Arabian families, the Financial Times reported, citing people close to the discussions.
The brothers want at least £750 million pounds (S$1.315 billion) for the luxury hotel, the FT said, citing a person working with another potential bidder.
The process to sell the hotel has been underway for several weeks, the people said. They didn't disclose which Saudi family was funding the potential bid or how much they were offering. There's no certainty the talks will lead to a deal, they said.
The Barclays acquired the hotel, on the edge of London's St, James and Mayfair districts, for around £75 million in 1995, and proceeded to invest tens of millions of pounds to restore it to its former glory, the FT said.
Built in 1906 by Cesar Ritz, the hotel was the scene of talks between Winston Churchill, Dwight Eisenhower and Charles de Gaulle during World War 2, the paper said. It has a Michelin-starred restaurant, while a night in the two-bedroom Prince of Wales suite in February starts at £6,075 pounds.
Property brokers JLL and Spartan Advisors have been working on the sale, but the brothers have also received some offers directly, the newspaper said. The Barclay brothers and Sidra declined to comment to the FT.