AccorHotels becomes first international chain to open in Iran
AccorHotels announced today that it has signed an agreement to become the first international hotel group to operate in Iran as the Islamic Republic opens up to the West following the deal on its nuclear program.
The French group signed the agreement with Iranian company Aria Ziggurat, which owns the buildings that will become its two inaugural properties in Tehran.
It is scheduled to open an Ibis hotel and a Novotel branch near Tehran's international airport on 15 October. The two hotels will have a total of nearly 500 rooms.
"We are very excited about signing this partnership with Aria Ziggurat in Iran. Our brands are looking at huge growth potential in this country, which is home to almost 80 million people and is expanding its economy," said Sebastien Bazin, AccorHotels' chairman and CEO, at a press conference in Tehran today.
The move comes two months after the historic nuclear accord, which the West says is aimed at preventing Iran from building a nuclear bomb. The deal received backing from the US Congress on Thursday.
The hotels will be aimed at both international and Iranian business travellers, and equipped with meeting rooms, conference spaces and spas, fitness suites and swimming pools.
"There is an enormous potential for development of our brands in this country of nearly 80 million inhabitants whose economy is growing fast," Bazin said in a statement.
AccorHotels is the world's sixth-largest hotel group.