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Dubai investor buys five-star hotel in Budapest

The Al Habtoor Group of Dubai has purchased Budapest's Hotel Le Meridien; the sale and purchase agreement was signed in Budapest on Monday. Speaking at the press conference, Chairman of the Group Khalaf Ahmed Al Habtoor would not rule out the possibility of further investments. Al Habtoor would neither confirm, nor deny the press report that the five-star hotel was sold for $80 million. He said that the Group has long-term plans concerning Hungary. Erste Bank and CIB Bank were involved in the transaction. Nimrod Rinot, CEO of the Hungarian subsidiary of the earlier owner, the Israeli CEE Group said the Dubai company could be followed by other investments in the region. Rinot told MTI that the hotel was purchased from the Hungarian state in 1998 by the Israeli Ofer Brothers Group, then, in 2009, a member of the group, the CEE Group purchased 95% of the ownership rights and the remaining 5% was owned by Israeli private investor Ari Yom-Tov until now. The Dubai investors acquired 100% of the hotel. Hotel Le Meridien Budapest has 218 rooms and 7 conference rooms. It is operated by Starwood Hotels and Resorts.