Singapore's Ascott REIT bags first business hotel in Australia

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Singapore-listed Ascott REIT has purchased the 150-room Felix hotel near Sydney’s airport for A$60.6m (US$42.9m), marking the trust’s first business hotel in Australia.

The property will be rebranded to Citadines Connect Sydney Airport once the deal is completed in May this year, as part of its new Citadines Connect brand, the CapitLand-owned REIT said in an announcement.

The deal takes Ascott’s Australian assets to more than 900 units across six properties in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth.

The proposed Citadines Connect Sydney Airport (image: Ascott REIT)

Opened in February 2018, the new acquisition is adjacent to Ascott’s 91-room Quest Mascot hotel and is within walking distance to both the Mascot train station and Sydney airport.

“With this enhanced presence in the vicinity of Sydney Airport, Ascott Reit is not only well positioned to benefit from the growing transient traveller traffic, but more importantly gain access to a significant number of transport and logistics-related national corporate accounts, as well as to capture demand from the growing industries in its neighbouring suburbs,” said Ascott Residence Trust Management Limited CEO Beh Siew Kim.

The Citadines Connect brand will cater to frequent travellers needing shorter stays, with self-check-in, a 24-hour ‘Grab & Go’ food and beverage bar, and round-the-clock gym facilities.

Ascott REIT also owns Quest Campbelltown and Quest Sydney Olympic Park hotels in Sydney, plus the Citadines St Georges Terrace Perth and the Citadines on Bourke Melbourne.

“Well supported by a range of industries, and a transparent and well-regulated business environment, Australia has consistently ranked as one of Ascott Reit’s top contributing markets in terms of gross profit,” said ARTML chairman Bob Tan.

The REIT will continue to look for investments in Australia, Japan, Europe and the US, the chairman added.

The deal follows AXA Investment Managers – Real Assets’ acquisition of three Sydney hotels and a Canberra asset for A$330.4m last month.

Ascott REIT, which has S$5.3bn of assets under management, owns 73 properties in 14 countries across Asia Pacific, Europe and the US.