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Yes Aparthotel in St. Petersburg, Russia

Russian apart-hotels brand eyes ME opportunities

DUBAI, September 12, 2017

Leading Japanese architectural and urban design firm Nikken Sekkei, in partnership with Russia's Pioneer Group, is looking to bring the unique Yes apart-hotels brand to the UAE.

Showcasing developments in Moscow and St Petersburg to potential new partners, investors, developers and operators, at Cityscape Global this week, both Nikken and Pioneer expressed confidence that a new brand from Russia will peak the interest of potential ME investors, in a regional hotel and apartment market that is already dominated by major international hospitality brands.

In the first 11 months of 2016, Russian visitors to the UAE totaled 215,000 a 10 per cent increase over the previous year. With visas on arrival introduced in January this year, travel professionals expect those numbers to increase substantially by the end of 2017, especially if the Ruble continues to strengthen against the US dollar - over the past 12 months, it has gained almost 13 per cent against the greenback.

Nikken Sekkei was the architectural firm behind the Yes mixed-use complex, Botanica, a 28-hectare TOD project in north eastern Moscow, Russia, which started almost five years ago and has involved the conversion of an abandoned brownfield site into a vibrant, friendly, sustainable and easily connected residential area.

Fadi Jabri, executive officer, Principal responsible for MENA, CIS and India regions, said: “The design of the Yes apart-hotel chain is such that it has a positive impact on the adjoining urban areas, through site improvement and landscaping, creating new working places and social infrastructure for residents.

“This has proven to be such a huge success in Russia that we are bringing our partnership with Pioneer Group to the Middle East where we are actively supporting their search for development opportunities.”

Pioneer Group specialises in the implementation of urban planning projects with multi-functional and complex residential developments and subsequent management services. Since 2001, the company has attracted funds from institutional investors and private individuals at the construction stage.

The Yes apart-hotels boasts high quality finishes, which come fully equipped with European furniture and household appliances. The developer also offers professional property management support.

Andrey Grudin, managing director, Pioneer Group, said: “The unique characteristics of the Yes apart-hotel brand guarantee a high occupancy rate in the first year of operation. The financial model of the project provides for an annual yield of 10 per cent, which is approximately 1.5-2 times more profitable than independently investing in any one-room apartment.

“The Yes apart-hotels is a unique product for the Russian market, combining the format of apartments and a reliable investment tool that bring a guaranteed income for each Ruble invested. We believe this model is perfectly suited for the regional market here, especially in the UAE, with a healthy investor appetite spurred by a strong real estate sector.”

Yes apart-hotels offer various size units and appeals to both corporate and leisure visitors. It is perfect for long staying corporate guests as well as short stay family getaways. During the recent Eid al-Adha holiday, hotels in the region were expected to see a 10 per cent increase in occupancy rates – with a large number of GCC families traveling to spend the break in Dubai.

Indeed, the recovery of the Russian Ruble and regulatory changes granting citizens free visa-on-arrival access to the UAE, have combined to boost visitor numbers to the country. Russia and China topped the list for growth as source markets, delivering 97 per cent and 55 per cent respectively in the first six months of 2017. - TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Russia | pioneer | group | Middle | East | Nikken | Aparthotel |

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