|SAN MATEO, Calif., July 14, 1998 - Signature Resorts,
Inc. (NYSE: OWN) today announced that during the second quarter it acquired
two new European resorts, one located in London, England and another in
the Algarve region of Portugal. These new acquisitions give Signature Resorts
a total of 27 European resort locations in the United Kingdom, Spain, France,
Austria and Portugal. During the second quarter, Signature also acquired
one new resort in Japan, its first Sunterra resort in Asia.
New Acquisitions Increase European Resort Choices to 27
The 22-unit Carlton Court marks Signature's first urban vacation ownership destination. Located in London, England, the Carlton Court is located approximately three miles north of Marble Arch and the Regents Park area of the city. Signature acquired the resort for a purchase price of approximately $4.5 million. The purchase includes excess land where an additional 10 units may be developed, subject to receipt of necessary approvals. Signature currently is renovating the property, which was previously operated as an apartment hotel, and intends to begin vacation ownership sales at the Carlton Court through its LSI Grand Vacation Club by the fourth quarter of 1998.
During the quarter, Signature also acquired the 165-unit Vilar do Golf Resort, located in Quinta do Lago in the Algarve region on Portugal's southern coast. The purchase price was approximately $8.4 million. Signature intends to begin vacation ownership sales at the Vilar do Golf Resort, which was previously operated as a condominium resort, through its LSI Grand Vacation Club by the fourth quarter of 1998. In addition to the 165 units, the Vilar do Golf Resort contains six swimming pools, a reception building, a supermarket, two restaurants, a tennis club and golf rights to nearby golf courses. Signature will manage both of the new European resorts.
"The addition of such desirable vacation destinations further enhances our standing as Europe's premier points-based vacation club," commented Richard Harrington, CEO of Signature's European subsidiary, LSI Group Holdings. "As we expand the breadth and distinctiveness of our network of vacation resorts, we expect to be able to attract an increasing number of new owner members to our Grand Vacation Club, as well as continue to convert existing owners to the points-based system. Providing our customers with multiple resort choices, high quality and flexibility is key to further success, and these new resort acquisitions strategically expand our club in desirable vacation destinations," continued Harrington.
"Our expansion and development in Europe is also helping pave the way for Signature's launch of our U.S.-based Club Sunterra later this year," added James E. Noyes, Signature's Chief Operating Officer. "LSI's Grand Vacation Club is the model for the design of Club Sunterra, which will be introduced to our North American owners and customers this fall."
LSI's Grand Vacation Club was established in 1974 and is Europe's largest points-based vacation club. Acquired by Signature Resorts in August 1997, the Grand Vacation Club will be affiliated with Signature's Club Sunterra to form a worldwide network of resort locations. Signature Resorts has also announced the acquisition of the 25-unit Sunterra Kawaguchiko Resort at the foot of Mount Fuji, located approximately 100 miles from Tokyo, Japan. The resort was purchased for approximately $1.8 million, an 85% discount to the resort's original development cost in 1992. "We are testing consumer demand in Japan for our product through a low risk pilot program," noted Steven C. Kenninger, Signature's President. "With access to quality resort properties at distressed prices through our Chairman Sam Kaneko, we will have the capacity to expand our Japanese operations based on market needs."
About Signature Resorts
Signature Resorts, Inc. is the world's largest vacation ownership company, with 85 resort locations around the world and over 200,000 owner members. Through its Marc Hotels Resorts subsidiary, Signature manages an additional 22 resorts in Hawaii.
As previously announced, effective on July 15, 1998, Signature Resorts, Inc. will change its corporate name to Sunterra Corporation.
This release contains forward looking statements, which include Signature's expansion plans, future prospects and other forecasts and statements of expectations. Actual results might differ materially from those expressed in any forward looking statements made by Signature due to, among other things, the timing of commencement of sales at its new resort locations, the integration of these properties into the company's operations and those factors identified in Signature's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including those set forth in Items 1 and 2 of Signature's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 1997.
|Signature Resorts, Inc. Announces Six New Projects / March 1998|
|Signature Resorts, Inc. Announces Corporate Name Change to Sunterra Corporation / July 1998|