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Versace has signed a deal with Melbourne-based Sunland Group Ltd to develop a further 15 ”seven-star” hotels under the Palazzo Versace brand. The company has yet to announce where these new properties will be, although Sunland Group executive director Sahba Abedian said: ”The new properties will be in key international destinations.”
Currently there is just one Palazzo Versace on Australia”s Gold Coast, which opened in September 2000, and another under development in Dubai. The company is due to announce marketing plans for the AU$1bn (”403m) Dubai property in December of this year, and begin the hotel”s construction in January. By 2009 the hotel should be ready to open.
Talking to ABTN, Sahba Abedian explained the strategy behind the Palazzo Versace portfolio: ”The opening of the Palazzo Versace on Australia”s Gold Coast in 2000 has provided an extremely successful platform on which to build. Moving forward we are set to open the next property on the banks of the Dubai Creek in 2009, which will again reflect the unique branding and luxury experience that are synonymous with the Versace name. From there we will go on to develop a further 15 over the next 30 years.”
When asked about how the locations have been chosen so far Abedian said: ”The Gold Coast was the natural choice for the first property as it is where the company was founded and is built on the House of Versace. Gianni lived in palaces like this himself. Dubai was also a natural choice as it is such a fast-growing city, at the cutting edge of technology and design. Dubai is now the destination for business in the Middle East, having launched the DIFX (Dubai International Financial Exchange) which is in partnership with the FTSE group, and operating offices from every global banking company. Business is only set to increase, and there is a huge appetite for the niche environment the Versace property will provide.”
Images: The Palazzo Versace on Australia's Gold Coast