With a massive refurbishment investment of R67 million over the past two years plus a further R112 million in the pipeline for completion by 2018, the First Group has shown its commitment to ensuring premium offerings for both leisure and business travellers.
This comes at a time when the luxury hospitality industry is enjoying a positive upturn and makes the Group’s total investment of R179 million a welcome boost towards its continued growth.
“We have put a great deal of effort into achieving our goals to not only enhance our portfolio but at the same time to invest in the development of the luxury hospitality industry,” said Donald Lamont, First Group spokesman. “This is an ongoing comprehensive investment programme that will ensure that our properties and service offerings are unique and exciting and that we continue to deliver on our promise of ultimate guest experiences in the country’s most desired locations”.
Eight of the Group’s flagship properties have been earmarked for refurbishment that ranges from extensive renovations to the updating of furnishings and fixtures to meet the latest modern design trends.
La Montagne in Ballito boasts an R8 million makeover with an additional R62 million budgeted for further investment over the next 4 years, giving this popular vacation destination on the KZN north coast a total R70 million upgrade by the year 2020. The recently re-launched Selborne Hotel on the KZN south coast has also been restored to its former glory after a whopping R28 million luxury refurbishment.
Looking inland, Magalies Park at the Hartbeespoort Dam has received a R12 million renovation with another staggering R28 million still to be rolled out over the next two years.
In the Cape, the Riviera Suites proudly showcases a R9 million transformation and will flaunt a total upgrade of R12.2 million by 2018.
The other four flagship properties are Midlands Saddle & Trout with a total investment of R16,7 million, The Palace in Durban with a total investment of R5 million, Bushmen’s Nek in the Underberg with a total investment of R4,6 million and Mount Sierra in Cape Town with a total investment of R6,2 million. On the international portfolio, Brockwood Hall in Scotland received a £1 million refurbishment.
Being everything to everyone comes at a huge cost, but this has not deterred the First Group who are confident that this move will proudly showcase them as the industry player with the widest diversity of property offerings and the best promotion of occupancy in over 20 different categories.
The Group’s property bouquet of over 60 resorts internationally includes hotels, golf villas, resorts, apartments, chalets and all-suite properties that together presents an extensive range of services. These range from premium leisure and business accommodation, the finest wedding venues, state-of-the-art conferencing facilities, the finest dining experiences and signature entertainment through to central reservations, property design and management, housekeeping services and holiday rentals amongst others. Furthermore, the advantageous global footprint of the First Group brings an exciting interface between global and local leisure industry trends to our doorstep.
This significant investment and commitment to providing sought-after destinations has all the ingredients to being the major drawcard that positions the First Group as every traveller’s first choice destination.
For more information visit www.firstgroup-sa.co.za