Spanish hotel brand Meliá Hotels International, placed as the third largest hotel group in Europe, has announced that one in three hotel openings between 2023 and 2026 will be within its luxury portfolio…
The luxury brand rooted in Mediterranean heritage and born in Palma de Mallorca in 1956, has announced an ambitious pipeline along with a commitment to expand its luxury portfolio by 40 per cent over the next three years. This year’s new sustainable leader and first carbon-neutral prototype, Villa Le Blanc Gran Meliá in Menorca, strengthened the brand’s position, which is elevated further with key upcoming luxury hotel openings: Palazzo Cordusio, a Gran Meliá Hotel in Milan, Ngorongoro Lodge, a Meliá Collection Hotel in Tanzania, ME Malta, ME Lisbon, ME Guadalajara in Mexico, Paradisus Gran Canaria, Paradisus Salinas in Lanzarote, and Gran Meliá Nha Trang in Vietnam.
“In today’s market, luxury and exclusivity can no longer be defined from one perspective, therefore our luxury brands (Gran Meliá, The Meliá Collection, ME by Meliá, and Paradisus by Meliá) seek to address the world of luxury in different ways. Our mission is to provide conscious travel for an enriching lifestyle,” said Gabriel Escarrer, CEO of Meliá Hotels International. “We have an impressive pipeline and our prime luxury hotels will spearhead our continued upwards trajectory, not just in destinations of Meliá’s roots of the Mediterranean, but further afield to Africa and Asia too.”
Palazzo Cordusio, a Gran Meliá Hotel in Milan will be housed in Palazzo Venezia, one of the most iconic Renaissance buildings in the city. Opening in Q3 2023, the emblematic Palazzo Cordusio sets a major milestone in being Gran Meliá’s first Milanese property and reaffirms Meliá’s strengthening footprint in Italy. The hotel will preserve the building’s cultural prestige with the hotel’s historic façade whilst renovating the 84 guestrooms, restaurants and rooftop bar. In-house architect Álvaro Sans will create elegant spaces and sophisticated interiors to entice gourmand-lovers and cultured travellers.
The most recent brand addition to the hotel group, The Meliá Collection, is also opening a new property next year. Further afield to the Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania, Meliá will launch its fourth luxury hotel in the African country and its first within the Crater itself – Ngorongoro Lodge, a Meliá Collection Hotel. Opening in June 2023, this five-star lodge will complete the brand’s safari circuit, boast the largest – yet still modest – hotel room offering in the Crater, and heighten Meliá’s commitment to sustainability and respectful exploration of the destination with Ngorongoro Conservation Area being a protected area and a UNESCO World Heritage Site; a rare site where wildlife coexists with semi-nomadic Maasai pastoralists.
The newly renovated 56-key hotel will display local artwork and feature neutral tones and traditional designs, coupled with remarkable views across the surrounding untouched landscape and the Crater, and subtle nods to Meliá’s Spanish heritage via guest experiences and culinary concepts. With considered environmental initiatives such as producing the hotel’s own electricity, solar energy and drinking water, employing local Maasai tribe members and collaborating with the Moshi-based NGO Born to Learn, Ngorongoro Lodge will introduce a cultural and eco-conscious hotel for discerning travellers.
Across the Mediterranean, ME Malta will launch on the island’s eastern coast in St Julians in the second half of 2023, presenting a new social and cultural epicentre for cosmopolitan travellers to discover the latest art, culture, music and fashion in the vibrant city. Designed by world-famous architect Zaha Hadid, it will become a new and profound destination to elevate Malta’s urban landscape – and the second ME by Meliá hotel created solely by the late Dame Hadid, following ME Dubai. The hotel’s 140 rooms and suites, spa and meeting spaces will boast bold yet elegant interiors, accompanied by innovative culinary offerings and ME by Meliá’s signature Radio Rooftop Bar where expert mixologists, professional DJs and exciting events will attract local and international guests. With culture at the core of ME by Meliá thanks to its programme ‘The Culture Collective’, and Malta being the official host of EuroPride 2023, this synergy will bring a momentous drive for the destination.
Another ME by Meliá hotel will launch as the brand’s first in the country, with ME Lisbon opening in Q2 2024. Perched up near Parque Eduardo VII, the hotel arrives as the city’s first luxury lifestyle hotel joining the high-end hospitality scene and marks a further milestone for Meliá’s European expansion.
Further afield, ME Guadalajara will open in Q4 2023 as the second ME by Meliá hotel in Mexico as well as the brand’s first urban hotel in Mexico. The brand will bring its unique style, personality and luxury lifestyle approach to one of the most cosmopolitan and cultural cities in the country. ME Guadalajara will comprise 152 rooms and suites, as well as a sky pool and signature rooftop area. In line with other global ME hotels, it will also offer a wide range of outstanding dining experiences.
Paradisus by Meliá, Meliá Hotels International’s fourth luxury brand, and currently solely located in Mexico and the Dominican Republic, marks significant news in 2023 with its inaugural European openings: Paradisus Gran Canaria, Las Palmas, in January and Paradisus Salinas, Lanzarote, in March. These resorts will be a blend of the brand’s signature family-friendly luxury approach with Paradisus’ new concept, ‘Destination Inclusive’. A concept that elevates the ‘all-inclusive’ notion to a new level, ensuring that the destination is now an essential part of the holiday experience. Each guest will be able to have a fully unique, immersive and authentic taste of the locality and embrace natural experiences through each resort’s sustainable design and philosophy. Paradisus Salinas will be housed in a building designed by Spanish architect Fernando Higueras, which is part of Lanzarote’s artistic and cultural heritage. The luxury resort will enable guests to discover the island’s culture, explore its natural beauty and delve into a holistic experience.
Heightening the hotel brand’s presence in Asia has been of equal calibre this year, and Meliá is already set to become one of the largest international hotel brands in Vietnam. The forthcoming opening of Gran Meliá Nha Trang in Vega City, Vietnam, in Q2 2023, will reaffirm Meliá’s position in the region and luxury market. Designed to become a symbol of modern architecture, the ultra-luxury hotel’s 99 exclusive beachfront private villas offer elevated space and privacy, with guest experiences pivoting around gastronomy and wellbeing. Meliá’s signature Mediterranean roots are seen through the culinary offering blending Spanish cuisine with local ingredients, accompanied by swimming pools, a Beach Club, a spa and fitness centre for undisturbed escapism.
Across the existing and upcoming portfolio, sustainability is a key component with corporate responsibility and sustainability embedded across Meliá’s social, economic and environmental pillars. Having led the S&P’s Global sustainability ranking in 2019 and 2020, Meliá was named the most sustainable hotel company in Spain and Europe for the third consecutive year in 2021, and Villa Le Blanc Gran Meliá set new standards for the group’s ongoing eco-commitment. Since its launch this summer, the hotel has received several awards such as the Rethink Award for the best hotel sustainability and rehabilitation project from the Habitat Futura Group, and has been acknowledged as the Best Sustainability initiative in the Balearic Islands, setting a benchmark for hotel-efficiency and decarbonisation in the Biosphere Reserve destination.
Main image credit: Meliá Hotels International