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Laguna Beach Resort sold
Thursday 24 February 2011, 05:52AM
  The Laguna Beach Resort (LBR) has become the second property in the Laguna complex to be sold as Laguna Resorts & Hotels Plc (LRH) continues to adjust its property and resort management portfolio. Reports that LBR was up for sale emerged months ago, but LRH – citing Stock Exchange of Thailand regulations – consistently declined to comment until the sale went through. Today’s announcement reveals that the buyer is Laguna Phuket Club Co (LPC), a Thai company controlled by Real Estate Equity Partners (RECAP), an Asia-focused real estate private equity fund, which has agreed to buy LRH’s share in the hotel for B723.6 million. Laguna’s joint venture partner in the hotel has agreed to sell the remaining shares to LPC, giving it full ownership of the 252-room beachfront resort. Completion of the deal is expected in May. RECAP, headed by Suchad Chiaranussati, has a high-profile presence in Thailand’s real estate market. It acquired the Jungceylon shopping complex in 2006 and has also invested in Bangkok’s prestigious four-tower Millennium Residence development. The change in Laguna Beach Resort’s ownership comes six months after Laguna sold another hotel, the Dusit Thani Laguna Phuket, to Dusit Thani Plc for B2.62 billion. A statement by LRH said, “Both transactions are in line with Laguna’s publicly disclosed strategy of divesting part of its interests in Thailand, enabling [it to] focus on emerging opportunities elsewhere in Asia.” Michael Ayling, managing director of LRH, commented: “These recent developments all reflect our commitment to developing our business in Phuket and elsewhere in the region.”