IFA Hotels & Resorts expands its IFA Yacht Ownership Club

Published March 13th, 2006 - 07:59 GMT

IFA Hotels & Resorts, a leading developer of premier integrated and mixed-use hotel and tourism resort projects throughout Europe, the Middle East, the Indian Ocean and Africa, has expanded its exclusive yacht lifestyle concept to include the Mediterranean and Red Sea cruising zones in addition to that of the existing Arabian Gulf.

This move is aimed at tapping the growing market for yachts and luxury boats in the region, as the company gears up to promote the attractive benefits and offerings of the IFA Yacht Ownership Club.

Werner Burger, President and COO IFA Hotels & Resorts, said “The idea of owning a yacht is a dream of many people, but may not be immediately attainable because of the costs involved. The IFA Yacht Ownership Club caters to those who want to indulge their passion for luxury cruising, in a variety of international destinations, without the stress and costs inherent to multiple yacht ownership.”

“By extending our yacht lifestyle concept to the Mediterranean and Red Sea cruising zones we are in a position to provide an opportunity for boating enthusiasts in this region to experience the very best of year round luxury cruising.” he added.

The IFA Yacht Ownership Club works just like a golf or country club – members pay an annual fee which grants them access to the club’s services and facilities, in this case a fleet of professionally crewed and maintained, luxury yachts in four international cruising zones. Depending on their requirements, members purchase either Gold or Platinum memberships that are allocated a number of credits to be exchanged for a combination of peak, shoulder and off-peak, luxury cruising days.

The Club’s fleet  currently consists of three luxury Maiora motor yachts, ranging   from 23 metres to 27 metres in length, that are based in Dubai, Beirut and Cannes. Each yacht can travel to a number of exotic destinations, but it is up to the individual members to design their own cruising calendar using a real-time, online scheduler or through the Club’s concierge service.

Once aboard any of the yachts, members of the IFA Yacht Ownership Club will be attended by a fully qualified, professional Captain, Deckhand and Steward. Each yacht comfortably sleeps up to 8 guests in four exclusively appointed on-suite cabins. Equipment on board is what is expected from yachts costing in excess of AED 15 million (Euro 3.3 million) that include the latest in smart technology. Down below twin Caterpillar engines allow for cruising speeds of up to 28 knots.

Piaras Moriarty, Vice President Vacation Ownership IFA Hotels & Resorts, said: “If you already own a yacht or are considering buying one you will understand the challenging logistics involved in having your yacht professionally crewed, managed and ready where you want it, when you want it. Imagine you are cruising the Arabian Gulf and would like to have your yacht waiting for you at the Monaco Grand Prix the following weekend; with the IFA Yacht Ownership Club it has never been easier. With just one telephone call to the Club’s concierge service a fully crewed, provisioned and ready to cruise IFA yacht will meet you at your choice of ports and marinas throughout any of the extensive IFA Cruising Zones”

“IFA Cannes takes you to the most desired Mediterranean cruising destinations that stretch from St Tropez to Monte Carlo, from Majorca to Malta, and more. IFA Beirut covers the Greek Islands to Sharm el Sheikh and IFA Dubai cruises the Arabian Gulf and the coast of Oman. Whether one is looking for that special family break, a business lunch or a trip with a difference, the concept of having a fleet of luxury yachts, at ones disposal, just as if you owned it, is now possible. This level of convenience and access would be hard to achieve without the IFA Yacht Ownership Club. Of course this is what you would expect as a member of one of the most innovative and exclusive Lifestyle Membership Clubs in the world” he added.

IFA HOTELS & RESORTS – www.ifahotelsresorts.com

IFA Hotels & Resorts (IFA HR) is a leader in the development of premier integrated and mixed-use hotel and tourism resort projects throughout Europe, the Middle East, the Indian Ocean region and Africa

Listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange, with a market capitalization of US$ 1.3 billion, IFA HR’s main shareholder is Kuwaiti based International Financial Advisors (IFA). IFA Hotels & Resorts South Africa is also listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange as of February 27, 2006.

IFA HR projects and investments in Dubai include The Fairmont Palm Hotel & Resort, the Fairmont Palm Residence (www.fairmontpalmresidence.com), the Crescent Resort on the Palm Island (to be managed by Fairmont Hotels & Resort), The Palm Residence (Al Nabat and Al Haseer), the Palm Golden Mile (www.thepalmgoldenmile.com) and the Movenpick Hotel & Residence Laguna Tower Dubai (www.lagunatower.com).  IFA HR’s other projects are the Kempinski Alabadiyah Hills in Beirut (www.abadiyahhills.com), a shareholder in the Four Seasons Hotel in Beirut, the Zanzibar Beach Hotel & Resort (www.zanzibarbeachresort.com), the Zimbali Coastal  Resort & Zimbali Lakes  (www.zimbali.co.za), the Zimbali Lodge (www.zimbalilodge.co.za), the Fairmont Zimbali (www.fairmontzimbali.com), shareholder in 5 Lonrho Hotels in Kenya (www.lonrhohotels.com) and in YOTEL (www.yotel.com), which owns two YOTEL hotels in Heathrow and Gatwick, United Kingdom.  IFA HR is also the force behind the super-premium Sheraton Algarve Hotel (www.luxurycollection.com) and Pine Cliffs Resort (Portugal) (www.pinecliffs.com), part of Starwood’s Luxury Collection.

Globally, IFA HR have entered into strategic alliances and Joint Venture partnerships with leading companies such as Kingdom Hotel Investment Group (Saudi Arabia), Nakheel (UAE), United Investments Portugal, Savills (United Kingdom), a strategic alliance with RCI (part of the Cendant’s Group) and Moreland Developments (Pty) Ltd (South Africa).

IFA HR aims to link its resorts to new parts of the globe, such as the US, the UK, Mauritius, Eastern Europe and the Far East. This will offer investors and tourists access to world class facilities through a network of hotels, residential resorts, vacation and residence club destinations.

IFA HR programme of brand acquisition and developer partnerships will continue into the future and is evidenced by the ever growing strength of its product range:

• IFA - Hotels & Resorts
• IFA - Lifestyle Membership Clubs
• IFA - Vacation Ownership
• IFA - Fractional Ownership
• IFA - Hotel Ownership
• IFA – Residences
• IFA – Travel & Tourism

This unique product range enables IFA HR to continuously anticipate and deliver to the varying property investment and leisure requirements across the globe.



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