Millat Investments has acquired control of the landmark Winston Hotel in Rosebank in Johannesburg, South Africa, adding another key property to its fast-growing hospitality portfolio.
The acquisition of the Winston property follows the successful Africa Travel Indaba in Durban, an event that focussed on reigniting tourism to South Africa and the continent after the global pandemic lockdown.
Notes Millat Investments CEO, Hamza Farooqui: “There is unmistakable evidence the world over, that tourism is starting to pick up and this was clear for all to see in the positive sentiment expressed at the Indaba. Visitors will always need quality accommodation and I am proud to be part of the rebuild process with the new-look Winston property and others in our growing hotel portfolio.”
“Tourism is a major economic driver, and it is encouraging to see that the hard work put in by the hospitality industry over the past few months is starting to pay dividends, demonstrated by growing confidence in our sector and increasing arrivals – long may it last”
And in a major development to coincide with the acquisition, Millat is also pleased to announce its partnership with the award-winning global design house, Yabu Pushelberg. The studio is internationally recognized for shaping interiors, styling, and building experiences for leading luxury hospitality brands.
Millat Investments has entrusted the Toronto and New York based design house Yabu Pushelberg with spearheading the rejuvenation of the Winston Hotel design and crafting the property’s next chapter.
Yabu Pushelberg is renowned for their standout interiors, products, lighting, and styling. Trusted partners to the world’s leading luxury brands, including Aman, Bergdorf Goodman, LVMH, and Park Hyatt, Yabu Pushelberg is a landmark to the luxury hospitality landscape. The design house is bringing the same level of rigor and thoughtfulness to Winston Hotel, where they will be taking its design language to new heights.
“Appointing Yabu Pushelberg as the designers of the Winston Hotel’s rejuvenation is a significant game changer for the hotel and hospitality industry in South Africa,” says Farooqui.
“We are one of the few hospitality ownership groups in the region who place an importance and relevance on design and brand standard which leads to world class guest satisfaction and guest comfort. All of this leads to better operations, better rates and puts South Africa’s eco system first.”
Yabu Pushelberg recently visited the property in Johannesburg.
“Co-Founder, Glenn Pushelberg’ s, personal involvement in this project means only one thing – what will come out will be a very unique guest experience which hopefully under the right hotel brand will deliver a world class luxury product and service never before seen in South Africa,” says Farooqui.
The challenge in redesigning the Winston Hotel is one that Glenn Pushelberg is relishing.
“It’s my privilege to collaborate with an entrepreneur like Hamza and the Millat Group, where our shared value of hospitality and guest journey will guide the design,” said Pushelberg.
“Winston Hotel marks our first design project in South Africa and the African continent. It is an honour to be trusted with designing their story and crafting an experience of beauty and meaning for the global traveller.
We left our recent visit to South Africa inspired and motivated by the potential the Winston Hotel offers us as designers. Our aim is to craft an intimate, culturally minded destination, invigorated with compelling entertainment.”
– George Yabu and Glenn Pushelberg
The five-star hotel exudes an air of timeless elegance, and the well-known heritage ambiance is intermingled with a mix of artwork and memorabilia acquired over years. For many international visitors it has become a first-choice accommodation option in the city.
The acquisition of the Winston comes almost three months after another Millat owned property, Hyatt House Johannesburg Rosebank welcomed its first guests.
The Winston Hotel gives the Millat group a new option in its portfolio. From a luxury and boutique accommodation perspective, the hotel will appeal to travellers looking for a high-end accommodation offering.
“We are in final discussions with a leading global hotel brand as we look to find the right fit from a brand perspective to manage and brand the iconic Winston Hotel,” says Farooqui.
The hotel will continue to operate in its current form using its existing brand and booking systems.
In the past 18 months, Millat has invested heavily in the hospitality sector with the opening of four properties and creating well over four hundred jobs.
“I am confident we are already seeing a major uptake in domestic and international travel for both leisure and business tourism. We must be prepared for this as the world opens and we must provide the traveller with options in line with the contemporary traveller needs,” says Farooqui.