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APA confirms purchase of Coast Hotels

Deal worth $210 million continues string of B.C. hotel acquisitions
 Coast Coal Harbour Hotel, Vancouver | Photo: Coast Hotels

APA Group of Japan has purchased Vancouver-based Coast Hotels for $210 million through a share purchase agreement with Okabe Co. Ltd. of Tokyo, the former owner of Coast Hotels.

APA is Japan’s largest hospitality firm with 373 hotels, Toshio Motoya, founder of APA, told a September 6 Vancouver press conference. Vancouver-based Coast Hotels has 36 properties including the Coast Coal Harbour Hotel in Vancouver and the Coast Harbourside in Victoria among its 19 B.C. properties. The firm also owns hotels in Alberta and the Northwest Territories and 10 properties in the Western United States.

APA Group made an unsolicited offer to purchase the Coast Hotels, which was accepted by the Canadian firm’s parent company, according to a Coast Hotels spokesman.

“We are delighted that an organization as entrepreneurial and respected as APA Hotel Group has chosen Coast Hotels as its route into the North American market,” said Victor Komoda, president of Coast Hotels.

Motoya said APA will make Vancouver its head office and base of operations for an aggressive North American expansion.

In 2015, APA made its first acquisition in North America with the purchase of a property in New Jersey. With more than 60,000 rooms currently under the APA brand, the company aims to reach 100,000 rooms by 2020, Motoya said.

The first B.C. steps will be the transforming key Coast Hotels into APA’s “new urban style hotel concept,” Motoya said through a translator. The upgrades will begin shortly at Vancouver’s Coast Coal Harbour and Victoria’s Coast Harbourside, according to an APA presentation.

The APA purchase continues a series of rapid-fire hotel acquisition in B.C. over the past year.

In 2015, B.C. posted a total hotel property sales volume of $759 million, up 31% from a year earlier. In the first six months of this year, 16 B.C. hotel sold for a total of $201.3 million. This included the $62 million sale of Victoria’s Oak Bay Beach Hotel in May and the June sale of the Hyatt Regency in Vancouver, which was acquired by Hong Kong-backed BlueSky Hotels and Resorts Ltd. as part of its $2.1 billion takeover of Innvest Real Estate Investment Trust.

Vancouver hotel transactions last year included the $180 million purchase of the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver and the $290 million sale of the Westin Bayshore. The latter penciled out to $567,500 for each of its 511 rooms, considered a per-room price record for a Canadian hotel property, according to Colliers International.