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Orient-Express declines alliance with Indian hotel group

21 September 2007 by

Orient Express Hotels has declined proposals for a strategic alliance with the Indian Hotels Company (IHCL), reiterating its desire to continue as an "independent company".

IHCL bought a 10% stake in Orient Express on Monday for $211m (£106m) and said it was assessing the viability of combining the two brands.

But Orient Express today announced it had "not entered into strategic discussions with IHCL, the Taj hotels group or any of their affiliates" and it did "not wish to pursue the proposals for discussion".

It added that future growth plans should continue, as an independent company, to focus on the top end of the luxury travel market.

Orient-Express owns, part-owns and manages 49 hotels, restaurants, tourist-train and river-cruise properties in 25 countries, including include Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons in Oxfordshire and the Cipriani in Venice.

IHCL owns and operates the 57-strong Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces in 12 countries, including the Crowne Plaza London St James and 51 Buckingham Gate.

Indian Hotels Company buys 10% of Orient-Express >>

Orient-Express Hotels put on the market >>

Orient-Express >>

Taj Hotels >>

By Christopher Walton

E-mail your comments to Christopher Walton](mailto:Christopher.Walton@rbi.co.uk?subject=Orient-Express declines alliance with Indian hotel group) here.

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