BlackRock Real Assets acquires pan-European Amistat International hostel portfolio
BlackRock Real Assets has acquired a pan-European hostel portfolio as part of a 100 million euro joint-venture with Amistat International, a market-leading hostel operator. The off-market acquisition comprises a seed portfolio of Amsitat’s three assets, with an active pipeline of another six assets. The transaction is consistent with BlackRock’s value-added strategy, focusing on value creation with an allocation to low-beta alternative sectors, such as student housing and hostels.
Thomas Mueller, European Head of Value-Added Real Estate, BlackRock, comments: “this transaction presents an opportunity to gain early-mover access into an increasingly institutional but undersupplied asset class. The demand profile for hostels is particularly appealing given the lack of quality, modern stock in the market, which is characterized by fragmented ownership and very low brand penetration.”
While the presence of institutional capital in the hostel market has historically been limited due largely to the disjointed market and difficulty in accessing stock and achieving scale, interest is growing from institutional investors who have invested or expanded in recent years and for whom the acquisition of a portfolio of operational assets should be attractive.
Frank Orenstein, CIO and Partner at Amistat adds: “We see Amistat as a pioneering lifestyle brand that offers stylishly-designed, safe and tech-infused social hubs aimed at experience-hungry youth travellers of the 21st century. In our hostels we are offering shared – and private rooms, both with ensuite bathrooms, bars, dining/cooking areas, work-spaces, chill-out zones, high-tech connectivity and engaging activity programmes. For the young travellers the ‘living like a local’ experience is gaining more and more importance”.
Amistat International S.L. is a Barcelona-based Hostel management company with existing locations in Barcelona and Ibiza, focused on offering a high-end lifestyle vibe at an affordable price in preferred destination locations.
Amistat Leadership Team
Santi Prat, CEO and Partner, is from a family of retail entrepreneurs who pioneered the supermarket and later retail chains in Spain. He passionately transfers his in-depth retail expertise into the Hostel Segment and is responsible for the business development of Amistat. He opened the first Amistat hostel in Barcelona in 2013.
Frank Orenstein, CIO and Partner, is responsible for directing all activities from both a development and operating perspective. He was one of the original founders of Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts and throughout his 45 years of hospitality activity, has developed over 100 hotels and resorts worldwide.
Ingo Fröhlich, CFO and Partner, applies 20 years of experience in business expansion and team performance working as a CEO in 4 countries for a global automotive leader. His key responsibility is the establishment of business partnerships and strategic alliances, the creation of an efficient and productive Company culture, and the development of teams to excel at customer satisfaction.