Playa Completes Acquisition of Five Resorts in Jamaica

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By the Caribbean Journal staff

Fast-expanding all-inclusive company Playa Hotels and Resorts has completed its acquisition of five all-inclusive properties in Jamaica.

The deal with Sagicor Group Limited also includes two adjacent oceanfront land sites on the north coast of Jamaica.

The Jewel Runaway Bay.

The portfolio includes four existing resorts including the 495-room Hilton Rose Hall, the 268-room Jewel Runaway Bay, the 250-room Jewel Dunn’s River and the 225-room Jewel Paradise Cove.

The transaction also includes an 88-room hotel tower and spa, two land sites and a hotel management contract at the Jewel Grande Montego Bay.

The Jewel Grande Montego Bay.

Playa paid $100 million cash and 20 million shares in common stock to Sagicor, a deal that amounts to almost $320 million.

Two Sagicor nominees also joined Playa’s board of directors.

“The closing of this transaction with Sagicor elevates Playa into a strategically dominant position in Jamaica, diversifies our resorts portfolio and will allow for several years of strong profit growth as we execute our rebranding, expansion and renovation projects.  We are excited to welcome our new Jamaican team members and Sagicor as a valuable new investor and partner,” said Bruce Wardinski, Chairman & CEO of Playa Hotels & Resorts.

It’s a huge expansion for Playa, which has been rapidly increasing its presence in the Caribbean, largely under the Hyatt Ziva and Zilara brands.

Hyatt Ziva Butlers

The Hyatt Ziva Cancun.

Playa also recently debuted resorts under the Panama Jack brand name on the Caribbean coast of Mexico.

The company also manages the Sanctuary Cap Cana in the Dominican Republic.

The deal makes Playa one of the largest resort owners in Jamaica, both in the total number of rooms and the number of brands under management.

“This business combination will be a great benefit to the country of Jamaica, and represents a unique opportunity for growth and development for the people of Jamaica and the tourism sector,” said Richard Byles, Chairman of Sagicor. “Through this transaction, Playa will leverage Jamaica’s hospitality assets of tropical climate, attractive beachfronts, culture, airlift, proximity to US markets, high stabilized occupancy levels versus other Caribbean destinations, and supportive government agencies.”