The Ronaldo hotel chain starts its international expansion in Morocco
Portuguese soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo and the country’s top hotel chain Pestana will open a new hotel as part of the Pestana CR7 joint venture in Marrakech next year and hope to double the brand in the next three to five years.
Ronaldo follows the path of other sports stars who have invested in hotels, including tennis player Andy Murray and football players Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs, but Ronaldo’s company has global ambitions.
The new project, the fifth hotel under the Pestana CR7 brand, a combination of Ronaldo’s initials and his T-shirt number, will rent the 160-room hotel for 20 years and manage it, said Pestana Hotel Group’s development director. José Roquette. The Moroccan investor M Avenue will finance it and will own it.
“It’s a brand that will grow … In the next three or five years we will quickly double the number of hotels,” Roquette told reporters, mentioning Ibiza and Milan among the possible places.
Pestana, who has a hotel in Casablanca, is also opening a 4-star hotel in Marrakesh and hopes to expand further in the North African country.
The general manager of Pestana told Reuters in December that the joint venture should help open new markets in Asia and the Middle East, where Ronaldo is extremely popular, and reinforce its expansion in Spain and the United States.
Ronaldo and Pestana will open two hotels this year in Madrid and New York, after having tested the domestic market of Portugal, which is enjoying a tourist boom, with two hotels in Madeira and Lisbon.
Pestana is a family chain of more than 90 luxury hotels. Its goal is to open 20 more, including the CR7 brand, with an investment of 200 million euros towards the end of the decade, mainly in Portugal, said Roquette.