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1st Hilton on Bulgaria's Black Sea Coast to Open in Golden Sands

Sofa News Agency

The top-class global hotel brand Hilton will be represented for the first on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast with the opening of the “Doubletree by Hilton Varna” hotel in the Golden Sands resort.

The upcoming opening of the Doubletree by Hilton Varna was made public Friday at a news conference in the Golden Sands resort with the announcement of a franchising contract between Hilton Worldwide and Helios Hotels Jsc, a subsidiary of Tetrareal Jsc.

The famous Doubletree chocolate chip cookie, an icon of the hospitality of the brand, was introduced for the first time in Bulgaria during a special ceremony.

While top global luxury hotel brands are present in Sofia, the Doubletree by Hilton Varna will be the first facility of such class in Bulgaria outside of the capital.

“The new Doubletree by Hilton Varna is the fully renovated luxury part of the former Helios Spa & Resort Hotel. We have decided to perfect this part in order to re-brand it, so we have invested in a number of improvements such as new fire and safety installations, new TV systems, and the Suite Dreams mattresses - a trademark of the Doubletree brand, unique for Bulgaria, and found only in our hotel,” announced Dr. George Velchev, Chair of the Board of Directors of Tetrareal Jsc.

“Our company has made a considerable investment in Doubletree by Hilton Varna, especially given the fact that the hotel already had a five-star category. Our aim was to create a unique product for the Golden Sands and the Bulgarian Black Sea coast. We are glad that once again we will be pioneers in the Golden Sands resort with our world-class brand and services. Hilton has been selected many times as the most famous hotel brand in Europe and the world, and I am convinced this product will enjoy an immediate success here since, in my view, Bulgaria continues to offer the best quality at the best price among the European vacation destinations,” Velchev explained.

While not allowed by the Hilton franchising contract to disclose the exact amount of the investment in the new Doubletree hotel, Velchev told Novinite.com (Sofia News Agency) that the money invested to re-brand the hotel was about 35% of the original construction investment.

“The 2010 opening of Doubletree by Hilton Varna reaffirms the stable development of the Doubletree brand in Europe. The European presence of the world hotel brand Doubletree by Hilton has seen considerable growth in the last few years,” said Claudio Sturm, the General Manager of the new Doubletree by Hilton Varna hotel in the Golden Sands resorts.

Sturm has prior experience at management positions in leading hotel chains in Germany and Austria, and has also served as the Sales and Marketing Director of the Hilton Sofia.

Doubletree by Hilton Varna is located in a green area of the Golden Sands resort with a sea view. It features a fitness center equipped by the top American producer Precor. The hotel offers a direct access to the Aphrodite Beauty Spa & Health Clinic, a unique facility for the Bulgarian Black Sea coast which is combination of a spa and medical center located on an area of 2 300 square meters.

Among its many other amenities in the Doubletree style, the hotel grants its guests free access to its own section of the beach of the Golden Sands resort.

Doubletree is one of the ten brands in the Hilton Family which also participates in the Hilton Honors program; it encompasses facilities in 230 locations around the world.

The first Bulgarian Doubletree hotel hopes to benefit from the loyalty of Hilton clients, as well as from the upcoming opening of a number of new Doubletree hotels around Europe – 4 in Russia, 3 in Turkey, and one in each Greece, Romania, and Norway.

Velchev told Novinite.com (Sofia News Agency) he expected that the opening of the Doubletree by Hotel Varna will break the trend of reliance on tour operators to find customers now prevailing among Bulgarian Black Sea hotels and resorts.

In his words, over 90% of the foreign tourists using Bulgarian Black Sea hotels are recruited through tour operators. In contrast, he expects the specific features of the Doubletree brand will allow the new hotel to bring this number down to 20%-30%.

Velchev further announced his company plans to open another Hilton brand facility - the Hilton Varna.

It will be constructed on the spot of an existing hotel in the Golden Sands resort, which is to be demolished. The construction will start in the fall of 2010, and the Hilton Varna is expected to open in June 2011.

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