Madrid-based European private equity real estate manager Azora has acquired Bluserena SPA, the second largest resort operator in Italy, from the Maresca family.
The acquisition has been completed on behalf of Azora’s latest panEuropean hospitality fund, Azora European Hotel & Lodging, F.C.R.
Founded in 1985 by Carlo Maresca SPA, Bluserena manages a portfolio of 13 hotels, eight of which it owns. The hotels are spread across the main Italian tourist coastal destinations including Sardinia, Sicily, Apulia, Abruzzo, Piedmont and Calabria.
The portfolio totals over 4,200 keys and consists of eleven 4* category hotels (villaggi) and two 5* category resorts with full board and all-inclusive offerings, attractive beaches and a wide range of entertainment amenities, including swimming pools, sports facilities and clubs for children and youngsters.
The transaction includes the acquisition of the Bluserena operating platform, which will continue to be located in Pescara (Abruzzo).
Azora aims to further strengthen the “Bluserena” brand by implementing a c. €30 million investment programme across the owned hotels and by continuing to grow the company through new hotel acquisitions as well as new leasing and management contracts in the Italian market, consolidating its position as a leading player in the country.
Concha Osácar, co-founding partner of Azora, commented: “This transaction reconfirms Azora’s conviction in the long terms prospects for the European leisure market and our belief that there is also significant pent-up demand for leisure travel due to COVID which will lead to a strong recovery in the market as vaccination programmes continue to progress across Europe. The acquisition of this major Italian operator is part of our commitment to the European hotel sector and particularly to the Italian market, as one of the most popular holiday destinations in the Mediterranean, backed both by strong domestic demand and growing international tourism in regions such as Puglia, Sicily and Sardinia.”
Silvio Maresca, CEO of Bluserena, commented: “We believe that Bluserena is ready to take a new qualitative leap at the hands of a European fund like Azora. Azora seemed to us the most suitable partner to continue Bluserena’s story and to boost its growth. They have seen in Bluserena a leading hotel management platform in Italy and, as such, a tool for future development. Bluserena is now beginning a growth phase in the Italian market, which will create opportunities for the team and for the city of Pescara, where Bluserena’s headquarters will remain.”