Major investments in the hospitality supergroup Aman are letting it expand more quickly. Look for its spin-off brand Janu to add 11 properties, from Turks and Caicos to Dubai, over the next four years.
Luxury hospitality juggernaut Aman is entering an unprecedented period of growth. After amassing 34 luxury hotels in 35 years, it now plans to open 11 hotels and resorts for its off-shoot brand Janu over the next four years, Skift has learned.
The move comes in the wake of last week’s announcement that it would receive $360 million from United Arab Emirates (UAE) royals and their investment corps. The investors include a unit of Abu Dhabi wealth fund Mubadala Investment Co. and Alpha Wave Ventures, a private equity fund co-managed by U.S. firm Alpha Wave Global and Chimera Capital.
Janu’s Growth Spree
The Janu brand is Aman’s engine for development. While Aman is more about ultra-luxurious seclusion, Janu will be a bit more affordable and more social — with also the potentially favorable economics of higher room counts.
After its maiden property in Tokyo opens later this year, Janu will spread to Thailand, South Korea, Maldives, Turkey, Portugal, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Turks & Caicos, and Montenegro — which was the brand’s planned debut location before the pandemic.
The Saudi hotels will be in Diriyah Gate and AlUla, two of the Kingdom’s premier projects in driving tourism and changing the country’s image. The Dubai iteration opens in 2027.
Also in Saudi Arabia, ‘flagship’ Aman properties are set for Diriyah and AlUla.
Big Bet on Ultra-Luxury
Owned by real estate billionaire Vladislav Doronin, Aman announced Janu in 2020, crediting Doronin as the mastermind.
Over the last 12 months, Aman has cozied up to the Middle East, receiving $900 million in funding from Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) and Cain International, the London-based privately-held real estate investment firm before last week’s $360 million from other investors.
“The validation of Aman’s strategy by prominent investors in regions where we have considerable expansion planned enables us to leverage the extraordinary potential of the Aman brand and accelerate the pipeline to deliver sustainable growth,” Doronin said in a statement.
Middle East Growth
It’s not only hotels where Aman is teaming with the UAE and Saudi. In April of last year, the group partnered with PIF to announce ‘Aman at Sea,’ a new mega-yacht running the Aman flag setting sail in 2027.
One of the group’s brand pillars and great selling points has been its locations. Since its inception, the celebrity-favored brand has mostly tucked itself into remote locations, but with the acceleration of Janu, Aman appears to be going more conventional.
In Dubai – home to more than 800 hotels and counting – few hotels are truly secluded. Unless they are built on their own island (take the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah) or out in the desert where few residents drive to (take Marriott’s Al Maha resort), hotels will likely be shoulder to shoulder with a competitor, a mall, or a super-tall residential building.
In Diriyah Gate, Aman loyalists may again be disappointed with the proximity to other properties and people. Both the Aman and Janu in Diriyah slot into a 36-hotel masterplan for the site, putting the pair in walking distance to more mainstream luxury brands such as Waldorf Astoria, Four Seasons, and Park Hyatt.
The development space for Diriyah is around the same size as Los Angeles International Airport.
In desertscape AlUla, Aman and Janu will have competitors such as Banyan Tree and Habitas in the same project.
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Photo credit: Illustration of a Janu luxury hospitality property. Aman