IHG to Open the Holiday Inn Express Natal in Northeast Brazil

IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) announced plans for a new Holiday Inn Express in Natal, Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil. Scheduled to open at the end of 2008-early 2009, the 13-floor, 160-guestroom hotel, will be owned by Praiamar Empreendimentos Turisticos Ltda. under a license agreement with a company in the InterContinental Hotels Group.

Natal is the capital of Rio Grande do Norte (The Grand Rio of the North) and is considered one of the most vital tourist destinations in northeast Brazil. The hotel will be located at Ave. Engenheiro Roberto Freire 2622 across from the Ponta Negra beach in the central tourist's section of Natal.

“Natal is one of Brazil's greatest tourist cities in the northeast part of the country and offers countless activities for both Brazilian and international travelers alike, an ideal location to build a Holiday Inn Express hotel,' says Alvaro Diago, area president, IHG Latin America. 'Holiday Inn Express Natal will meet the demand for travelers visiting the region looking for comfortable and affordable accommodations with a familiar and prestigious, quality brand name.'

A city built on sand, Natal is known for its fantastic beaches including the location of the soon-to-be Holiday Inn Express in Ponta Negra which is regarded as the best in the city. Natal also has great sand dunes that are hundreds of feet high and spill down into the seashore. Local sand dune activities include sand-skiing, rope-sliding, camel rides, and buggy rides. Other popular sports and activities in the city include fishing and snorkeling up the coast at nearby Maracajaú, where there are wide coral reefs that lie in shallow water. Lastly, Natal has wonderful sunsets that can be enjoyed from the top of the glorious dunes.

'We are very proud to develop one of IHG's fastest-growing brands in our magnificent city of Natal, as the brand is a renowned global brand that ideally fits the needs of many travelers' today,' said Francisco Abdon Gosson from Praiamar Empreendimentos Turisticos Ltda. 'We anticipate a successful grand opening next year and look forward to furthering our relationship with IHG.'

Upon completion, the hotel will have an outdoor swimming pool, fitness center, guest parking, gift shops and a business center.

The Holiday Inn Express brand has rapidly developed into one of the world's most preferred hotel brands. A young brand, by global hotel standards, Holiday Inn Express has been offering comfort, value and convenience to international business and leisure travelers since its inception in 1991.

In a short 16 years, Holiday Inn Express has grown to nearly 1700 hotels throughout the world, and is the fastest growing of the Holiday Inn hotel brands, of which there are 14 hotels currently found in Latin America.

Currently, IHG has a total of 16 properties in Brazil. In November 2006, IHG opened the Crowne Plaza Belem in Belem, Brazil, the location of the first InterContinental Hotel developed in 1946.

IHG has more than 160 hotels in Mexico, Central and South America as the well as the Caribbean, and has been serving Latin America for over 60 years. IHG is one of the leading hotel companies in the world, and the second largest hotel operator in Latin America. IHG has hotels situated in nearly every key market throughout the Latin America territory.