€72million investment kicks off scheme to revamp French resorts

Posted on 02 July 2013

Selected ski resorts in France can look forward to a facelift after a consortium of French companies, including banks and resort operator Compagnie des Alpes (CDA), launched a new scheme to reinvest in rundown residential accommodation. The effects should be a bonus for owners of ski property throughout the French Alps.

Called Foncière Rénovation Montagne, the new company will acquire tired tourist residential buildings, many of which are not deemed fit for modern-day habitation, in order to renovate them. Once revamped, residential blocks will be put back on the rental market and let under rental management contracts in the medium-term to keep them in circulation.

Foncière Rénovation Montagne will be the majority shareholder in the local property companies, but local public and private players, such as ski lift companies and local authorities, will also hold stakes.

Foncière Rénovation Montagne will kick off by acquiring 500 apartments across the five resorts CDA resorts of La Plagne, Les Arcs, Les Menuires, Les Deux-Alpes and Serre Chevalier, over a target period of four to five years. Total investment for this first phase will amount to nearly €72 million, of which 40 per cent will be financed through equity and 60 per cent through bank debt.

A statement by CDA said: “Resorts’ activity is highly dependent on being able to offer abundant and attractive tourist accommodations. However, when faced with a reduced and aging offering of lodgings, new construction – when still possible – alone cannot suffice. Renovating and managing older leisure buildings to increase occupancy during the tourist season have become critical for the future of these resorts. Both elected officials from winter sports resorts and local actors are mobilizing to tackle the issue.”