Morgan, Starwood sell Westin Tokyo to GIC for $720m

A Singapore sovereign fund’s purchase of a prized fixture in Tokyo’s skyline has resulted in a handsome exit for Morgan Stanley and Starwood Capital.

GIC Real Estate, the property investment arm of the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation, has purchased The Westin Tokyo hotel from Starwood Capital and Morgan Stanley for an estimated price of ¥77 billion ($723million; €478 million).

The purchase price, which Dow Jones reported, is approximately 54 percent more than the ¥50 billion Morgan Stanley paid in 2004 when it acquired The Westin Tokyo from Japanese brewer Sapporo Holdings.

“Given the successful working relationship between the investors, our hotel asset management affiliate Panorama Hospitality, K.K., and Starwood Hotels and Resorts, we are happy to have found GIC Real Estate to take ownership of this landmark property,” Sean Williams, a managing director at Morgan Stanley Capital KK, said in a statement. “The transaction also demonstrates Morgan Stanley’s continued confidence in managing hotel investments.”

The Westin Tokyo totals 438 rooms in the center of Japan’s capital, near the Roppongi entertainment district and Shibuya/Harajuku shopping area. The hotel is also located adjacent to Yebisu Garden Place complex and features high-end dining, event and banquet facilities and a new Le Spa Parisien.

Starwood senior managing director Jeffrey Dishner said: “Along with Morgan Stanley, we made this investment in December of 2004, and together, through our partnership with the team at Westin, we were able to improve the performance of the hotel. It is with great pride that we pass ownership of the property to GIC Real Estate, a long-term investor in Japan, and a close partner of both Morgan Stanley and Starwood Capital.”

Following the deal, The Westin Tokyo will continue to be operated by Starwood Hotels and Resorts under its Westin brand.