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Bella Italia and Café Rouge owner Tragus signs deal with Center Parcs

17 July 2007 by
Bella Italia and Café Rouge owner Tragus signs deal with Center Parcs

Restaurant operator Tragus has signed a deal with Center Parcs that will see high-street brands Bella Italia and Café Rouge in the leisure village operator's UK sites.

The deal is part of a £12m investment in the holiday business's 53 UK restaurants and bars.

Tragus will initially operate the sites under their existing names until refurbishing as their more familiar high-street brands.

The deal, agreed in principle, is due to start in September with the upgrading of facilities taking place over the following 12 months.

There are a total of 53 restaurants and bars in Center Parcs in the UK.

Tragus was acquired by US private equity giant Blackstone in December 2006, while Blackstone also bought Center Parcs UK for £990m in May 2006.

Graham Turner, chief executive of Tragus, said: "There is a very close match between what we do and what Center Parcs customers are after. There are existing French and Italian operations and we are looking to add our focus to them."

While the expected revenues behind the deal are not being revealed, Turner said their was an open tendering process for the deal but having shared owners in Blackstone "helped facilitate the discussions".

"Ultimately these deals only work if they make sense to both parties. With venture capital they are more concerned with keeping their assets are separate."

Center Parcs unveils £60m refurbishment project >>

Tragus buys Strada restaurant chain for £140m >>

Cafe Rouge bought by Blackstone >>

Center Parcs leaves London Stock Exchange as part of takeover >>

Blackstone to buy Hilton for nearly £10b >>

By Christopher Walton

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