Virgin Hotels plans to make a push into resort destinations, eyeing markets in the Caribbean and Europe, which could create stay-and-sail synergies with Virgin Voyages.
“Part of our strategic focus on resorts, in particular, is to complement what Virgin Voyages is doing,” Virgin Hotels CEO James Bermingham told Travel Weekly. “So, Ibiza is a big project for us in Spain because Virgin Voyages stops there, and in the Caribbean, same thing.”
In addition to Spain and the Caribbean, Virgin Hotels is eyeing Portugal, Italy and Greece.
A move into resort markets would be made in partnership with another Virgin Group arm, Virgin Limited Edition.
Virgin Limited Edition specializes in luxury properties and retreats. Its properties include Richard Branson’s 74-acre private retreat Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands.
“We will collaborate on opportunities,” said Bermingham. “If it’s ultra-luxury, smaller in scale and extraordinarily special, that fits into the Virgin Limited Edition portfolio, and if they’re larger developments in the luxury lifestyle space, that fits into Virgin Hotels.”
Bermingham added that Virgin resorts will have a “larger emphasis on wellness” than their urban properties.
Virgin Hotels currently has properties in New Orleans, Las Vegas, Nashville, Dallas, Chicago and, most recently, Edinburgh, Scotland, where Virgin Hotels had a soft opening for its first international location earlier this month.
Later this year, the brand plans to open hotels in New York City and Glasgow, Scotland. A Miami hotel is scheduled to open in 2025.
Virgin Voyages, meanwhile, debuted its first ship, the Scarlet Lady, last summer. Since then, the Valiant Lady has entered service, and the Resilient Lady is due this August. A fourth ship, the Brilliant Lady, was unveiled in April.
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