Mumbai: Indian Hotels Co. Ltd, which runs the Taj chain of hotels, has won the bid for The Connaught hotel, a 85-room, four-star hotel property on Janpath lane in central Delhi.
Hospitality chains Sarovar Group and Byke Hotels and Resorts were also in the race to acquire the property.
IHCL has won a 33-year lease contract with New Delhi Municipality Council (NDMC), the current owner of the property. It emerged as the highest bidder offering to share 31.6% of the annual revenue earned from the property with the civic body, said one person involved with the bidding process.
“We are extremely delighted to win the bid for The Connaught, New Delhi. The hotel is located strategically in Lutyens Delhi, the city’s most coveted address in the heart of the capital. It will aptly fit into our new SeleQtions brand, which is a collection of “named hotels" that are unique and one of a kind," said an IHCL spokesperson in an email response.
In May 2016, NDMC had sealed the hotel, after the investigations into the controversial murder of an estate officer revealed the involvement of Ramesh Kakkar, the then promoter of the hotel. Kakkar had owed around ₹ 140 crore as licence fee to the civic body.
“IHCL will give a new lease of life to the Connaught Hotel, which has an excellent location but had been completely run down and became inconsequential as a hotel despite its grade A location," said Mandeep Lamba, managing director (hotels and hospitality) at property consultancy firm JLL.
The acquisition will give IHCL a significant presence in the heart of Delhi.