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Qatari former PM explores sale of US$869m London, Paris hotels

London/New York

THE family office of former Qatari Prime Minister Hamad bin Jassim Al Thani is considering the sale of luxury hotels in London and Paris valued at a total of about US$869 million, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Eastdil Secured has been appointed to advise on the potential sale of the Hyatt Regency Paris Etoile hotel in Paris, which is owned by a company linked to the sheikh and valued at about 500 million euros (S$761.9 million), said two of the people, who asked not to be identified because the plans are private.

Broker Jones Lang LaSalle has been hired to evaluate the potential sale of the Sanderson and St Martins Lane hotels in London, valued at a combined £250 million (S$425.2 million) and owned by another company under the sheikh's control.

A handful of investors have been approached by JLL regarding the London hotels, but there is no certainty at this point that a deal will eventually take place.

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Sheikh Hamad, often referred to as HBJ, served as Qatar's prime minister from 2007 to 2013 and was head of the Qatar Investment Authority, the country's sovereign wealth fund.

Both the fund and the Qatari royal family have been among the most prolific investors in luxury property in the world, snapping up trophy hotels, office buildings and stores in cities including London, Paris and New York.

The Sanderson and St Martins Lane hotels in London's Soho and Covent Garden districts were last traded in 2011 for about £192 million, according to a filing from QInvest, the Qatari bank that advised on and helped finance the deal.

The Hyatt Regency Paris Etoile is one of the tallest buildings in central Paris and boasts almost 1,000 rooms. BLOOMBERG

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