Hilton enters Russian market

Hilton Hotels Corporation has signed a franchise agreement for a major landmark hotel in Moscow, Russia, representing the company’s first hotel in Europe’s largest country. The 275-room Hilton Moscow Leningradskaya is currently closed and undergoing a major refurbishment and will re-open in mid-2007. Hilton has signed a long-term franchise agreement with JSC Sadko Hotel as Franchisee and with Interstate Management Services, Inc, as the hotel operator.

The Hilton Moscow Leningradskaya is a landmark building in Moscow. The hotel is one of seven famous ‘Stalin’ towers that define the Moscow skyline. Originally constructed in 1954, the Hilton Moscow Leningradskaya will retain many of its historic features as part of the current refurbishment.

The operator of the Hilton Moscow Leningradskaya is Interstate Management Services, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Interstate Hotels & Resorts Inc (“Interstate”). Interstate is the largest independent U.S. hotel management company not affiliated with a hotel brand.  It operates over 260 hotels in North America and Europe, including approximately 80 hotels under the Hilton Family of Brands.

Wolfgang Neumann, Hilton’s Area President for Europe and Africa, explained the significance of the company’s first Russian property:
“The signing of the Hilton Moscow Leningradskaya marks an important step in the continuing growth of the Hilton’s Family of Brands into emerging international markets like Russia. Russia is a strategic growth market for Hilton and I am delighted that our strong relationship with Interstate has now been expanded for the first time outside of North America.”

Hilton recently appointed Rob Stoddard as Director of Development for Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States and is about to open its first development office in Moscow.