Los Angeles: sbe Entertainment Group announced a major expansion into Mexico, agreeing to manage five resort hotels that will include residential units, sbe club membership units, and the award-winning sbe restaurants and nightclubs. These projects will be built by Armar Group, a privately held Mexican real estate development and investment company.
The first two projects will be built in Medano Beach in Cabo San Lucas and in the heart of the hotel zone in Cancun, with others to follow in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico City and Punta Mita.
The first phase of the Cabo San Lucas project will feature a 200-room SLS LUX Hotel and 250 residential/sbe club membership units. It is scheduled to open in 2017. The Cancun project will feature a 150-room SLS LUX Hotel and 150 residential/sbe club membership units. It is slated to open in 2018.
“We chose sbe from a large group of potential partners because of the company’s track record in providing exciting, high-quality and innovative experiences for its guests,” said Daniel Araf, chairman and chief executive of Armar.
The SLS Hotels in Mexico double the number of hotels that sbe plans to open in the coming years. The SLS LUX at Baha Mar in the Bahamas is opening in April 2015. Others that are opening in the next three years include SLS LUX hotels in Philadelphia, Seattle, New York City, Hollywood and a hotel and residential complex in Miami, which has already sold out.
The deal with the Armar Group follows the return of Nazarian, sbe’s founder, who rejoined the company in March as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer following a sabbatical. The company also announced changes to its board of directors.
“It’s great to be back at work doing what I love—growing the sbe brand and creating value for our partners,” Nazarian said. “sbe is an important part of my life and our family’s legacy. I’m eager to continue to build this company. We have some great projects in the pipeline and I’m eager to see them through to fruition.”
In December, Nazarian was granted a conditional license on a unanimous 4-0 vote by the Nevada Gaming Commission as part of the approval process for sbe’s largest property, the SLS Las Vegas, a 1,620-room hotel and casino that opened last summer and was just named the best hotel on the strip by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
During the first two months of 2015, sbe and its nearly 6,000 employees achieved record revenue growth. Moreover, the Nazarian family has infused sbe with additional equity and a renewed commitment to spend considerable time and resources to continue to develop sbe as a leading hospitality management company.
The sbe board of directors is now headed by Nazarian, his father Younes Nazarian and brother David Nazarian. sbe expects to name two or three additional board members in the weeks ahead.
Three principals of Cain Hoy Enterprises have stepped down from the board of directors as part of an agreement between sbe and Cain Hoy.
“We have the utmost confidence in the Nazarian family,” said Henry Silverman, head of Cain Hoy, affiliates of which retain rights to acquire up to 20 percent of sbe.
sbe presently has 11 new projects in various stages of development, construction and negotiation. Those projects include a total of 1,893 hotel rooms and 2,230 residences.
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