London building sold to ABIL Group for hotel development

5 Strand, London, UK. Photo credit: Alchemi Group(Image: Alchemi Group)

Indian real estate developer ABIL Group has made its first investment in the UK–a retail and office building at 5 Strand in Central London–according to the latest report from Savills.

The developer acquired the building in a transaction with BlackRock UK Property Fund worth more than £90 million. Savills purchased the property on ABIL's behalf while Cushman & Wakefield and Tudor Toone advised BlackRock on the property sale.  

The building was marketed with plans to convert the property into a 200-room hotel designed by US-based architectural firm Adjaye Associates. The purchase comes with planning permission to construct a new 152,400 square-foot development, a 61,670 square-foot office space, 5,376 square-foot retail space and 38,941 square-foot residential housing. The Westminster City Council and UK-based pharmacy chain Boots currently rent the 72,359 square-foot building. 

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“The London hotel market continues to attract a wide range of overseas investors with the city providing attractive long-term income prospects. As the first purchase for our client, 5 Strand makes an excellent choice providing the opportunity to create a leading purpose-built hotel l in a tourist location that is recognizable to a global audience,” Gary Witham, director in the hotels team at a Savills, said in a statement.

Data from Savills shows that overseas investment into hotels in London reached £1.06 billion in 2017, increasing 17.7 percent from 2016. Institutional capital investment into hotels also grew 6.8 percent to £370.7 million in 2017, recording the highest level of investment from this buyer type for over 10 years.