"The franchise, known for its restaurants and hotels throughout the world, will officially open in October, but it has already begun to offer half of its rooms in a soft or partial opening before the official inauguration to showcase its range of restaurants and bars to the local market ", reports Prensa.com.
The start of operations of the first Hard Rock Hotel in Latin America represents a significant increase in competition in the hotel industry, especially when the 1,500 rooms become available.
When officially opened, the hotel will be the largest in terms of number of rooms in Panama. It will own about 7.5% of the 20,000 hotel rooms which will be available in 2014.
Hotel occupancy rate is down. At the same time, tourist arrivals have also declined: down 6% in January 2012 compared to January 2011. The drop represents a decline of six percentage points in relation to the interannual rate of 12% between January 2011 and January 2010.
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Starwood Hotels & Resorts has announced the opening of its second establishment in the Westin brand in Panama, the 218-room Westin Panama.
With the opening of The Westin Panama, the third property in the hotel chain developed and operated by Bern Hotels & Resorts, Starwood now has seven hotels in the Latin American country.
Eleven new hotels will open this year and the next, adding 1,550 rooms to the current 44,752.
Of the eleven openings, eight are located in the greater metropolitan area and the rest are in the province of Guanacaste.
With an investment of $15 million, the opening of the 128 room Courtyard by Marriott is planned for next month in Alajuela.
The Sheraton Hotel in Escazu which will be inaugurated on June 13, is valued at $40 million and has 172 rooms, 3 bars, 2 restaurants and a 1,500 square meter casino.
The hotel, since two weeks ago, now operates 24 hours a day and is located adjacent to Multiplaza. "Although it was initially announced that it would operate under the brand Sonesta, the hosting center decided to market its offering with the distinctive Sheraton brand, owned by the Starwood Hotels Company", reported Elfinancierocr.com.
With an investment of $6 million, Hotel Express, will open its doors on July 1st in Managua.
Located near the Las Americas Mall, it has 106 rooms in a five storey building.
Mario Saenz, general manager of Las Americas, told the press that the new three-star hotel is targeting middle class executives.