Meliá Hotels International
|Traded as||BMAD: MEL|
|Founder(s)||Gabriel Escarrer Juliá|
|Headquarters||Palma de Mallorca, Spain|
|Key people||Gabriel Escarrer Juliá (Chairman), Gabriel Juan Escarrer Jaume (CEO)|
|Products||Hotels and resorts|
|Revenue||€1.251 billion (2010)|
|Operating income||€141.8 million (2010)|
|Profit||€50.1 million (2010)|
|Total assets||€3.390 billion (end 2010)|
|Total equity||€1.116 billion (end 2010)|
|Employees||16,820 (average, 2010)|
Meliá Hotels International, S.A. (formerly Sol Meliá) is a Spanish hotel chain which was founded by Don Gabriel Escarrer Juliá in 1956 in Palma de Mallorca. It is also known as and referred to by its former name of Sol Meliá. The company is one of Spain's largest domestic operators of holiday resorts and the 17th biggest hotel chain worldwide. Domestically in Spain the company is the market leader in both resort and urban hotels. Currently the hotel chain operates 350 hotels in 35 countries on 4 continents under the brands Meliá, Gran Meliá, ME by Meliá, Paradisus, Innside by Meliá, TRYP by Wyndham, Sol Hotels and Club Meliá.
The origins of the company reach back to 1956, when the then-21-year-old Gabriel Escarrer Juliá leased the Altair Hotel in Palma, Majorca. Over the subsequent years Escarrer took advantage of the island's increasing popularity as a tourist destination for package holidaymakers, adding further properties to the portfolio of his company, Hoteles Mallorquines. The company expanded geographically in the 1960s and 70s, acquiring hotels in the Canaries as well as the other Balearic Islands. After the decline of General Franco's dictatorship, tourism in Spain developed more rapidly and Hoteles Mallorquines aggressively moved onto the Spanish mainland, establishing a presence in much of the country by the early 1980s.
In 1984 the company renamed itself Hoteles Sol (English: Sun Hotels), before establishing itself as the largest hotel chain in the country with the acquisition of the 32 location-strong Hotasa group. Another merger followed three years later as the company combined with the upmarket Meliá chain to form Sol Meliá. The deal increased the geographical scope of the company into the Caribbean, Americas and other parts of Europe.
A 1996 split of the company into two separate businesses, one for hotel ownership (Inmotel) and another for management (Sol Meliá, which listed on the Bolsa de Madrid), was reversed three years later amid major consolidation in the industry. Gabriel Escarrer Sr. subsequently stepped down from the chief executive role, replaced by his sons Gabriel Jr. and Sebastian, who became deputy CEO. The following year brief takeover talks were held with Hilton International, but Sol Meliá instead chose to make an acquisition of its own, paying €360 million for smaller peer Tryp Hotels. Tryp had come close to being purchased by rival chain NH Hoteles a year earlier. Tryp continued to exist as a separate brand within the Sol Meliá group. Rights to the Tryp brand were sold to Wyndham Worldwide in 2010, but Sol Meliá continues to own and operate the hotels under a licensing agreement.
On 3 June 2011 the company changed its name to Meliá Hotels International.
The company has recently sought to forge partnerships with other companies in the leisure industry, opening hotels based on the Hard Rock Cafe concept in conjunction with then-parent The Rank Group, and Flintstones-themed hotels with Warner Bros.
The company employs various commercial brands to offer their product, including Gran Meliá, Meliá Hotels & Resorts, ME by Meliá, Innside, Sol Hotels, Paradisus Resorts and Club Meliá (formerly known as Sol Meliá Vacation Club). In 2010, they divested themselves of their Tryp Hotels brand when it was sold to Wyndham Hotels.
The firm operates more than 300 hotels as of April 2013, of which over 150 are in Spain. Of the other 230 countries in which Meliá Hotels International operates, the largest numbers of hotels are located in Cuba, Germany, Croatia, Brazil and Portugal.
In late 2008, Hotel Meliá Inc. (HMI), a century-old family-owned hotel in Ponce, Puerto Rico, filed a complaint against Sol Meliá in the Court of First Instance after Sol Meliá attempted to register the name "Meliá" with the Puerto Rico Department of State aserting that Hotel Meliá Inc. "had the sole right to use the Meliá mark in connection with hotel and restaurant services throughout Puerto Rico." As a result Sol Meliá withdrew its application. But S.L. Dorpan, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sol Meliá, subsequently filed a complaint against HMI in the United States District Court for the District of Puerto Rico, "seeking a declaration that under the Lanham Act, Dorpan had the right to use the mark Meliá throughout Puerto Rico" and that HMI had the right to use the name Meliá only in the city of Ponce. The District Court issued an opinion on 31 March 2012 ruling in favor of Sol Meliá. HMI then appealed the decision of the US District Court for the District of Puerto Rico to the First Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston. On 28 August 2013, the Court of Appeals issued its opinion vacating the lower district court's decision and ruling in favor of Ponce's local Hotel Meliá.
In 2013 Melia acquired the Sheraton Hotel in Nassau, The Bahamas.
- "Annual Report 2010". Sol Meliá. Retrieved 8 May 2011.
- Brandt, Nadja (4 June 2007). "Deutsche Telekom, Ryanair, Sol Melia: European Equity Preview". Bloomberg. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
- Harding, Ben; Hetz, Robert (11 November 2008). "Spain's Sol Melia cuts capex, gloomy on 2009". Reuters. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
- Harding, Ben (7 August 2008). "Sol Melia's H1 profit drops 41 pct, to miss target". Reuters. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
- "Melia Hotels International targets Asia for growth". Investvine.com. 2013-02-21. Retrieved 2013-02-22.
- Cohen, M.L. (2006). "Sol Meliá S.A.". International Directory of Company Histories. The Gale Group. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
- "Annual Report 2004". Sol Meliá. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
- "Sol Melia Will Pay $326.8 Million For Spanish Hotel Group Tryp". The Wall Street Journal. 22 August 2000. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
- "Sol Meliá sella un acuerdo para la compra de Hoteles Tryp". El Mundo (in Spanish). 1 August 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
- Chang, Michelle (7 June 2010). "Wyndham Buys Tryp Brand". Toronto Star. Retrieved 8 May 2011.
- "Rank Group Plans Hard Rock's Growth". The New York Times. Associated Press. 19 June 2003. Retrieved 21 October 2010.
- "Hotel directory". Meliá Hotels International. Retrieved 7 Mar 2013.
- Civil No. 09-1188, Docket No. 1-1. Superior Court of Puerto Rico. Court of First Instance. Ponce, Puerto Rico.
- Dorpan, S.L. v. Hotel Melia, Inc. Civil Nos. 09-1138 (GAG), 09-1188(GAG). 851 F.Supp.2d 398 (2012). Dorpan, S.L., Plaintiff, v. Hotel Melia, Inc. et al., Defendants. United States District Court, District of Puerto Rico. 31 March 2012. Retrieved 9 September 2013.
- United States Court of Appeals For the First Circuit (No. 12-1679): Dorpan, S.L. v. Hotel Melia, Inc. Retrieved 9 September 2013.