Orient-Express upbeat about luxury market's prospects

27 February 2008 by
Orient-Express upbeat about luxury market's prospects

Le Manoir Quat' Saisons owner Orient-Express believes the luxury end of the hospitality market is holding up well despite fears over consumer spending.

After a turbulent year that saw the company the subject of takeover speculation and involved in a public spat with the owner of Indian hotel group Taj, the company said it saw plenty of opportunity for growth this year.

Orient-Express chief executive Paul White, who returned to the company in July 2007 after quitting his role as chief financial officer months before in May, said: "We are extremely pleased to see that the luxury market continues to show strength."

The company incurred more than £3m of restructuring costs in the year with chief executive Simon Sherwood resigning from his role in February last year after 13 years in the job.

White said the arrival of Martin O'Grady as chief financial officer completed the restructure of the operator's senior management team.

The company, which has 51 hotels, restaurants, tourist rains and river cruises around the world has put its Bora Bora Lagoon Resort property up for sale.

Turnover for the year to 31 December 2007 increased 21% from $497.1m (£250m) to $599.6m (£302m). Pre-tax profit was $70.7m (£35.6m) compared with $53.1m (£26.7m) a year ago.

Indian Hotels offers olive branch to Orient Express >>

Taj Hotels owner calls for public apology from Orient Express >>

Orient-Express Hotels appoints chief financial officer >>

Former Orient-Express executive returns to company to take top role >>

Simon Sherwood quits role as CEO of Orient Express Hotels >>

UK hotels will cope with consumer slowdown >>

By Chris Druce

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