Italy is among the most attractive European countries for hotel real estate investment. Rome takes the third place, behind Spain and Germany, in terms of market attractiveness.
It often happens that my Chinese friends ask me a suggestion about which kind of investment is better to do in Italy.
I have no doubts about my answer: to buy a hotel in Rome or Milan or Venice, or Florence or Pisa. Despite ongoing economic and political uncertainty in Italy, international and Chinese hospitality investors & developers and hotel brands are confident enough to invest in the country.
Why is this an opportunity for you?
The number of Chinese tourists who arrived in Italy in the first 5 months of 2019, for the first time, has been the highest inside the European Union. Considering the entire year, the forecast is around 6 million. This number will increase in the future, since, the more the Chinese know Italy, the more they fall in love with it. Chinese tourists bring back to the mainland the idea (not just photos, videos, and products) that the best fashion brands are in Italy, as the best European food and the richest architecture and historic heritage.
Italian lifestyle, with its slow pace, its attractions, its charm, attracts more Chinese whose tours abroad are changing form. From big groups visiting many countries in few days and eating just Chinese food and living in three stars local hotel, now in Italy can be seen more often couples or families spending around 10 days, just in Italy or in two countries at most, eating local food and enjoying the local habits.
In the past, among the Chinese tourists going to Italy the most common complaints were that in the room there was not the kettle, that the breakfast was not what they expected, that there was no tourist brochure translated in Chinese and that nobody at the reception could speak Chinese.
It comes not as a surprise then, why Chinese tour operators prefer to offer to their guest to stay at hotels run by Chinese people who know Italy but at the same time who, above all, know habits and requirements of their compatriots.
So, any Chinese company investing in Italy can easily contact the Chinese tour operators who work mostly with Italy as a destination and find an agreement with them. For my personal experience, I know that Chinese Tour operators are looking for hotels in Italy to establish long-term cooperation.
Furthermore, Chinese tourists going to Italy spend on average 1.200 Euro for shopping, the first person they ask where to buy, is the concierge of the hotel. The hotel owner can suggest shops he knows, and sign separate contracts with these shops owner to get extra revenue.
In the last two years, the hotel investment market in Italy is significantly more liquid and increased its appeal to buyers. Additional investors such as value add investors, hotel operators and core investors are actively looking and investing in the Italian hotel market.
The market has been growing significantly in the last years. Considering the figures for the first semester of 2019 and the current deals, we expect the total transactions to surpass 2 billion euro by the end of the year, so to increase importantly from the total of 1,3 billion euro reached at the end of 2018.
The sentiment is very positive. The hospitality market is very dynamic, and it offers many opportunities.
The price of the Italian hotels owned by private families, which represents a main slice of this market in this country, is now very competitive since privates do not have the strength to make investments or to renovate and so they prefer to sell. Price made by private families are lower than the ones applied by big companies or hotel chains, so this is the right time to buy.
Our team has closely followed two investments in this sector made by Chinese companies based in Italy, and in the last months we have been helping Chinese friends to find the right hotel for their pocket and their strategy.
According to the specific request and requirements, our experienced team can support you to find the most appropriate location and facility and to develop the best business strategy. We can also advise you and assist you throughout all the process, including checks onsite and all legal and taxation procedures.
Also, considering that the market is super-fragmented and family-run – it’s really set in the old ways! – we can guide you through the right investment and advise you in order not to encounter any surprises while having to do with local small entrepreneurs.
Because of the fact that a main slice of this market in Italy is fragmented and family-run, takes also to a general situation in which there is very little branding. And here’s another opportunity. After the acquisition of licenses and the implementation of Chinese-friendly facilities for future guests, local and Chinese marketing can play a decisive role in the success of the investment.
Furthermore, if the Chinese company who does the investment does not want to run the hotel, we can help also in finding who would run it on its behalf. We can help to find Chinese or Italian manager and Chinese or Italian staff.
If you have any interest in the best investment opportunity in Italy, contact us and we will be glad to show you some info about the hotels on sale and answer all your questions.
If you are interested in some investment opportunities abroad, you can always contact us and we will be happy to provide you with information and answer all your questions.