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Fairmont expands to South Africa

Fairmont, and strategic partner, IFA Hotels & Resorts will invest more than $250 million in a project, located in South Africa’s province of KwaZulu- Natal.

The development will include a luxury resort, championship golf course, spa and vacation ownership products, including Fairmont Heritage Place. The resort is expected to open in 2008 and will be branded “Fairmont Zimbali”.

The strategic alliance between Fairmont and IFA began in Dubai with the development of Fairmont Palm Island and expanded into Africa in a joint venture between Fairmont, IFA and Kingdom Hotel Investments with the recent acquisition of a Kenyan hotel portfolio.

“This development is another successful step in our effort to expand our brand globally,” commented William R. Fatt, Fairmont’s Chief Executive Officer. “We are pleased that our relationship with IFA has already produced a number of partnership opportunities and, with this development, creates an ideal platform to explore other opportunities in the growing South African leisure travel market.”

Talal Jassim Al Bahar, Chairman and Managing Director of IFA, said “Fairmont is the ideal partner for our significant development in Zimbali as it will bring the highest level of hospitality standards to South Africa. IFA remains committed to becoming one of the leading foreign tourism and property investors in Africa, ultimately expanding tourism in this burgeoning tourism market.”