Old concept, new Principal from Starwood Capital Group

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Global private investment firm Starwood Capital Group has announced that will launch a new urban lifestyle hotel group following a capital investment of around £150m.

The new group, which is to be called Principal, is a collection of city-centre hotels based in landmark buildings in exceptional locations across the United Kingdom. Drawing on local distinctive heritage of the properties and their surroundings is key to the new Principal brand.

Barry Sternlicht, chairman and CEO of Starwood Capital Group said: “At the heart of a great business is a unique and authentic story. Our people and our buildings have great stories to tell, and these stories differentiate you from the competition, giving your guests and your staff something to cheer about.

“Reviving these historic, grande-dame hotels is a truly great story – they are spectacular buildings in which we can create dynamic scenes. The story of each hotel, its amazing history and architecture is the opposite of the mass-produced chain hotel, and provides us with a canvas on which to curate a unique sense of place.”

Quirky details include vintage letterboxes in each lobby; a “corner shop” selling treats to stock the mini bar and essentials that guests might have

left behind; a tuck box of complimentary snacks, as well as fresh milk and mineral water in the mini bar; and a fully-fledged Concierge to guide guests to hidden gems and must-see attractions alike.

Among the new venues is the Principal Manchester on the corner of Oxford Street and Whitworth Street, occupies three adjoining buildings dating to between 1895 and 1932.

The portfolio also includes the Principal York, which dates from 1878, Principal Edinburgh on central George Street, which has been in business since 1881 and is made up of five listed Georgian townhouses.

The Principal Hotel Company, which owns over 40 landmark buildings across the UK, received over £200m of investment following the acquisition of Principal Hayley in 2013.

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Martin Fullard

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Martin Fullard

Martin Fullard is the Deputy Editor at Conference News. Formerly a web editor at a national newspaper in the Middle East and motoring journalist.

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