Fairmont Hotels and Resorts

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Fairmont Hotel and Resorts
Industry Luxury hotels
Founded 1907
Founder Tessie and Virginia Fair
Headquarters Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Area served
Parent AccorHotels
Website www.fairmont.com

Fairmont Hotels & Resorts is a chain of luxury hotels owned by AccorHotels since 2016. Fairmont Hotels & Resorts was created in 2001 following the merger of Canadian Pacific Hotels (founded in the late 1880s) and Fairmont Hotels (founded in 1907). Fairmont operates 75 properties in 24 countries, with a strong presence in the United States, and Canada.


Fairmont Hotels & Resorts was created following the merger of Canadian Pacific Hotels and Fairmont Hotels between 1999 and 2001.

Fairmont Hotels, 1st generation

During the 1890s, James Graham Fair bought the land where the Fairmont San Francisco now stands, the first hotel to bear the Fairmont namesake. The nearly completed structure survived the earthquake of 1906. Although heavily damaged by the subsequent fires, the hotel was renovated under the eye of architect Julia Morgan and finally opened in 1907. In 1926, the Penthouse Suite was created with three secret passageways to access it. The hotel was acquired by Benjamin Swig.[1]

Starting in the 1960s, Fairmont began developing a small chain of luxury hotels in major cities across the United States. The Fairmont chain consisted of seven properties in San Francisco, New Orleans (The Roosevelt), Boston (Copley Plaza), New York (Plaza Hotel), Chicago, Dallas, San Jose (Fairmont San Jose).

Canadian Pacific Hotels

In the late 1800’s, the Canadian Pacific Hotels (CP Hotels) was a division of the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) that operated a series of resort hotels across Canada. Most of these hotels were originally built and operated by the railway's hotel department, while a few were acquired from Canadian National Hotels. Over the years, a collection of unique hotels was put together in Canada’s cities and attractive rural areas. By the 1980s, CP Hotels' collection included the Chateau Lake Louise, the Banff Springs Hotel, the Château Frontenac, the Empress Hotel, the Palliser Hotel, the Fairmont Royal York, and others.

CPR's rival Grand Trunk Railway and later Canadian National Railway copied Van Horne's approach by building hotels such as the Jasper Park Lodge in Jasper, Alberta, and the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa. CPR purchased CN's hotel chain in 1988, making CP Hotels the nation's largest hotel owner. In the 1990s, CP Hotels began to expand and purchased the Canadian Delta Hotels chain and the international Princess Hotels chain in 1998, which became wholly owned subsidiaries of CP Hotels. In 1999, the CP Hotels purchased the San Francisco-based Fairmont Hotels and Resorts chain.

2001: Fairmont Hotels & Resorts

In April 1999, Canadian Pacific Hotels, Kingdom Hotels and Maritz Wolff & Co. bought Fairmont Hotel Management L.P., with Canadian Pacific Hotels holding the majority of the shares (67%).[2]

After purchasing Fairmont in 1999, Canadian Pacific Limited split into five companies in a 2001 "starburst" move designed to increase the valuations of its individual divisions. The former Canadian Pacific Hotels division took on the name of the much smaller Fairmont chain to reflect the new global focus of the new company.[3]

In the early 2000s, Fairmont multiplied its openings in the United States.[4] In 2001, Fairmont introduced the Willow Stream Spa prototype, a $7 million 2-floor 8,000-square-foot spa located inside the Fairmont Empress Hotel. The signature spa brand was then implemented in many of Fairmont’s locations.[1][5] In July 2001, Fairmont Hotels signed a joint-venture with Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan for a minority-stake purchase and the management of a luxury 393-room hotel in Dubai. The Fairmont Dubai was the first of Fairmont’s branded hotels in the Middle East.[1][6] In 2003, Fairmont introduced its signature Fairmont Heritage Place, a label for all exceptional hotels of its portfolio, with the opening of the Acapulco Diamante in Mexico.[7]

In 2004, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts Inc. paid $70 million to take full control of the management company that runs its properties. Then in early 2006, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts was sold for $3.9 billion USD to Colony Capital, LLC and Saudi Arabia's Kingdom Hotels International.[3][8] As a result of that purchase, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts was united with Raffles Hotels and Resorts and Swissôtel to form Fairmont Raffles Hotels International (FRHI), though the four chains still operate under their individual names.

The Ghirardelli Square and the Mareazul locations were added to the Fairmont Heritage Place portfolio in 2008.[9]

In April 2010, Kingdom Hotels sold 22% of its shares of FRHI (from 58% to 35%) to Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment, which now owned 40% of FRHI and became the largest shareholder of the company.[10] The Middle East became Fairmont’s new target market,[11][12] where Fairmont opened in the Makkah Royal Clock Tower Hotel in 2010 and at the Palm Jumeirah in 2012.[13] In Asia, Fairmont reopened the Peace Hotel in Shanghai in 2010,[14] opened in Baku’s Flame Towers in 2011,[15] and opened its first hotel in India in 2012.[16] In the USA, Fairmont acquired the Claremont hotel in Berkeley, California in 2014.[17]

In 2015, AccorHotels announced the acquisition of Fairmont Raffles Hotels International (FRHI), thus adding Raffles, Fairmont and Swissôtel to its Luxury Hotel Brands portfolio.[18] Acquiring Fairmont Hotels enabled the French hotel group to gain access to the North American market.[19]

In 2017, Fairmont opened the Qasar Istanbul, its first hotel in Turkey.[20]

Notable properties

Photo of properties Name City Country Managed by Fairmont since
The Savoy Hotel, London - geograph.org.uk - 104070.jpg The Savoy London  United Kingdom
New York (3550806398).jpg The Plaza Hotel New York City  United States
2009-0722-FairmontSF.jpg Fairmont San Francisco San Francisco  United States 1907
Banff Springs Hotel - panoramio - Jack Borno (1).jpg Fairmont Banff Springs Banff  Canada
2016-11 Château Frontenac 06.jpg Fairmont Le Château Frontenac Quebec City  Canada
Peace Hotel Shanghai.JPG Fairmont Peace Hotel Shanghai  China 2010
2016 Fairmont Montecarlo seen from the casino.jpg Fairmont Monte Carlo Monaco  Monaco 2005


  1. ^ a b c "Company timeline". Fairmont.com. Retrieved 1 October 2017. 
  2. ^ "CP Hotels buys stake in U.S. hotel manager". Cbc.ca. 19 April 1999. Retrieved 1 October 2017. 
  3. ^ a b globeinvestor.com: "Fairmont lagged others in CP 'starburst'", 31 Jan 2006
  4. ^ "Fairmont Hotels & Resorts". Forbes.com. 5 May 2004. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  5. ^ Jeremy Ferguson (31 May 2003). "Willow stream spa, Victoria". Theglobeandmail.com. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  6. ^ "Fairmont Acquires Minority Stake in 393-room Luxury Business Hotel Project in Dubai; Will Manage the Hotel Upon Completion". Hotel-online.com. 16 June 2001. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  7. ^ "Fairmont Heritage Place". Fairmont.com. Retrieved 1 October 2017. 
  8. ^ "Saudi Prince, Colony Capital Buy Fairmont Hotels for $3.9B". Foxnews.com. 30 January 2006. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  9. ^ Nick Kaye (21 March 2008). "Fairmont Heritage Place, Ghirardelli Square and Mareazul". Nytimes.com. Retrieved 1 October 2017. 
  10. ^ "Kingdom Holding Sells Stake in Raffles". dealbook.nytimes.com. Retrieved 20 September 2012. 
  11. ^ Elizabeth Broomhall (18 December 2011). "Fairmont to hire near 3,000 staff for new hotels". arabianbusiness.com. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  12. ^ Ed Attwood (2 May 2011). "Fairmont Raffles eyes new hotels in Saudi Arabia, Qatar". Arabianbusiness.com. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  13. ^ Bindu Suresh Rai (29 July 2010). "Fairmont to open 20 Hotels in Mideast, Asia". Emirates247.com. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  14. ^ Malcolm Moore (28 July 2010). "Peace Hotel reopens on Shanghai's Bund". Telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  15. ^ "Fairmont Baku Opens in Azerbaijan's Flame Towers". Lodgingmagawine.com. 1 July 2013. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  16. ^ "Fairmont Opens First Hotel in India". Fodors.com. 20 August 2012. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  17. ^ Frances Dinkelspiel (25 March 2014). "Fairmont group and Richard Blum buy Claremont Hotel". Berkeleyside.com. Retrieved 2 October 2017. 
  18. ^ "French hotel chain Accor buys Fairmont, Raffles and Swissotel for $2.9B US". Cbc.ca. 9 December 2015. Retrieved 1 October 2017. 
  19. ^ Yeoh Siew Hoo (28 July 2017). "Accor's Issenberg talks Fairmont, culture and content". Webintravel.com. Retrieved 1 October 2017. 
  20. ^ Niels Stolte (26 April 2017). "Fairmont Quasar Istanbul Opens in Turkey". Gtspirit.com. Retrieved 1 October 2017. 

External links

  • Official website
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