Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Greece: crisis hits tourism, 1,000 hotels put on sale

(ANSAmed) - ATHENS - At one of the most difficult stages yet of the economic crisis engulfing Greece, which is now in its fifth year of recession, the country's hotel sector, once of the world's most flourishing, is weighed down by bleak forecasts, particularly amid negative expectations for next summer.

Around 10% of hoteliers have stated their intention to sell their shares through estate agencies, specialised web sites and investment channels, as Giorgios Tsakiris, the head of the Greek Chamber of Hotels, has explained to the Kathimerini newspaper. This means that around 1,000 hotels in the country, both big and small, are expected to be put up for sale in the near future. Tsakiris also says that the economic crisis and reduced liquidity on the market have aggravated the phenomenon of hoteliers choosing to close rather than to continue the fight for survival, though these factors have made it increasingly difficult to find buyers, even though the average asking price has fallen by 10% in the meantime.

In the central Greek region of Attica, the owners of at least 50 hotels have said that they are looking for a buyer. One of the country's biggest property companies, meanwhile, already has a portfolio of 22 hotels in Attica, of which Athens is the capital, with the total value reaching 290.6 million euros. Read More