Richard Branson’s Virgin Hotels Expanding into Miami

by Isaac Benmergui, Esq on August 15, 2013

MiamiHe’s one of the most visible wealthy entrepreneurs on the planet, and he’s expanding his Virgin Hotels brand into Miami it seems. Virgin Hotels has just opened an office in Miami’s Coconut Grove.

Last month the office opened with 10 employees in the same building on South Bayshore Drive that houses sister company Virgin Mobile Latin America. Interestingly, the Virgin Hotels’s New York office has only five employees.

Virgin Hotels CEO Raul Leal stated that the company is slated to open its first U.S. property in Chicago next year, with New York following in 2016. Currently the company is scouting for the right site in the Miami area and looking at Miami Beach and Brickell. Further he said they’d like to have a hotel in Fort Lauderdale as well.

More hotels mean more jobs, more housing growth and an increase in the tax base for the area so hardest hit by the housing crisis.

Leal said having an office in Miami gives the company access South Florida as well as  the Caribbean, Latin America and Europe. With Latin Americans and Europeans being especially fond of buying real estate in Miami, existing home prices as well as prices for new construction will continue to rise with buyers competing over inventory of available properties.

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