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Greek hotel groups spend up big

Major Greek hotel groups undertook significant investment programmes in 1999, altering the country`s image in the area of tourism infrastructure…

Major Greek hotel groups undertook significant investment programmes in 1999, altering the country`s image in the area of tourism infrastructure, Greek firm Kantor<.> Capital AE notes its annual survey.

The country`s leading companies (205) reported combined assets of one trillion drachmas.

Apart from large-scale investment undertaken in Athens, other areas of the country such as Edipsos, Evrytania, Corfu, Halkidiki and Loutraki saw extensive upgrading in the hotel sector. Luxuriously-appointed rooms, conference facilities, restaurants, bars, pools and bungalows are among some of the new features.

More specifically, Corfu hotel group Melia Marbella cooperated for the first time with major European tour operators in Belgium, Germany and Italy with the aim of boosting its image in the eyes of travellers seeking high-quality vacations. At Edipsos, northern Evia, the operators of the Thermae Sylla Grand Hotel have created an ultra-modern thalassotherapy centre using German know-how.

The newly-formed Halkidiki-based Sani<.> Group represents a 3.4-billion investment and aims to serve the most demanding client. The company comprises Sani Beach Club, Sani Beach Hotel, Sani Villas and Porto Sani Village. Thessaloniki, in northern Greece, has established itself as an important regional business hub as a result of extensive investment. The Hyatt<.> and Capsis<.> groups were among the biggest spenders of 1999.

On Kos, a longtime favourite among British holidaymakers, Greece`s biggest conference centre opened, catering to 5,000.

The Cypriot-based Louis<.> hotel group bought out Greece`s biggest cruiseship line, Royal Olympic Cruises, which owns the fastest cruiseship in the world and moved to purchase a 68% stake in Colossos AE, owners of the Colossos Beach hotel on Rhodes.

The Cypriot-based Libra Holidays Group has indicated strong interest in Greece`s Golden Sun Cruises as well as the Columbia Hotel Resort on Rhodes. Meanwhile, the Poseidon Club hotel in the resort town of Loutraki undertook extensive renovations.

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