The Social Hub and Avenue secure €48.75m in financing from Santander Portugal for Porto mixed-use development

Amsterdam/Porto, 30 November 2022– The Social Hub (TSH) has reached an agreement for €48.75 million in financing from Santander in Portugal for a 26,600 sqm Porto development alongside Avenue. TSH will offer a 13,467 sqm hotel and student accommodation property in the city centre, including 305 rooms, co-working spaces, restaurants and bars, meeting and event spaces, a gym and a rooftop swimming pool. Construction is underway with the opening targeted for Q1 2024.Avenue will be responsible for the residential part of the development, spreading 11,000 sqm with 93 residential units, 16 retail units (3,560 sqm) and 445 parking spaces, with the opening targeted for Q2 2023.

The project targets a BREEAM “Very Good” in-use certification when completed.

Redevelopment of Praça de D. João I

The development will form the larger renovation of the D. João I square, creating new space for the local community to come together, including a public garden, and increase the availability of student housing in Porto.

Charlie MacGregor, founder and CEO of TSH, said: “We are very excited to announce that we have secured financing for the development of our Porto hotel. This location shows the viability of our hybrid-hospitality model, as together with Avenue’s residential development, it will really form a melting pot of different communities coming together: residents, students, long and short-stay visitors. The public-use garden will further support the revitalisation of the Praça do D. João I.”

Aniceto Viegas, CEO of Avenue, said: “It is always an important milestone in any development to secure the development financing. Such financing will allow to complete the construction of one of the most relevant redevelopments of Porto city centre, consolidating the renovation of the D. João I Square and the Sá da Bandeira street. Avenue is happy to contribute, with TSH, to bring more housing, retail, and facilities to the community.”

Miguel Silva Tomás, Head of Promotion to Construction in the North of Portugal, Santander, added: “This is an extremely relevant project for the city of Porto, as it brings together several aspects of the renovation of the surrounding area, bringing different communities together. The work developed with TSH and Avenue has been a challenge, but the fact that they chose Santander as a partner in this strategic growth opportunity is very rewarding.”

The development is part of TSH’s growth strategy that will see it grow its presence to 50 hotels from 25 hotels under ownership today. The current pipeline of TSH in Portugal further includes a development in Lisbon, while TSH is also looking at additional opportunities in the market.

TSH’s distinctive hybrid hospitality model proved resilient during the pandemic as TSH was able to substantially increase room allocation towards students when leisure and corporate travel dramatically reduced, thereby achieving strong occupancy rates and remaining cash-positive. With the hotel and travel market rebounding strongly, TSH benefits from a strong summer activity while its student bookings for the 22/23 academic year already stand at record levels.

About AVENUE Real Estate 

AVENUE is a benchmark in the Portuguese real estate market in the development and management of residential and office projects in the prime zones of Lisbon and Oporto.

With a special focus on urban requalification and urban regeneration, it contributes to the recovery of the authenticity and dynamism of the cities, developing projects in iconic buildings and properties in privileged areas.

Its portfolio consists of thirteen assets representing an investment volume of 885,500 million euros distributed over a gross construction area of 220,800 sqm, of which 70,000 sqm are dedicated to the three office buildings, the EXEO Office Campus, under construction in Parque das Nações. LUMNIA, the largest building with 30,000 m2, was completed in December 2021. |

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About Santander Portugal

Santander Portugal is a benchmark bank in the Portuguese financial sector.  The  Bank's  mission  is  to help  people and  companies prosper, aiming  to be  the  best  digital, open  financial-services platform, acting  responsibly  and  conquering  the  permanent  trust  of employees,  clients,  shareholders,  and  society.  Santander is currently the largest privately-owned Bank in Portugal in terms of domestic lending volumes, having consistently delivered high levels of profitability underpinned by sound capital base and asset quality.

The Bank is adapting its operation to the new clients needs, investing in processes, digitalization and technology, to deliver the best service experience materialized in the expansion if its loyal customer base.

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About The Social Hub

About The Social Hub

The Social Hub is a diverse community where people come to learn, stay, work, and play – previously known as The Student Hotel.

Designed to create meaningful, fun experiences, The Social Hub is your neighbourhood hub to discover, do better and make an impact; it's your space to call home.

Whether you're a local, traveller, student or professional, The Social Hub connects you with passionate people from all walks of life to meet, share ideas and experiences.

And it all happens under one hub. You'll find hotel rooms, student accommodation, coworking and event spaces, restaurants and bars, a gym, lounges – everything that brings people together.

Hybrid hospitality leaders

From design-savvy travelers to next-gen entrepreneurs, The Social Hub welcomes thousands of guests annually to its expanding portfolio of urban properties across Europe. Purpose-built or housed in historic converted buildings, The Social Hub’s industry-leading concept provides blended and flexible spaces to learn, stay, work and play for a night, a week, a month or a year – true, hybrid hospitality.

Founded in 2012, The Social Hub, formerly known as The Student Hotel, is headquartered in Amsterdam and has more than 800 employees. All The Social Hub properties offer a mixed-use with accommodation, bars, restaurants, gyms, retail shops, meeting and event spaces and high-profile coworking spaces. With over 11,000 rooms in Europe open and under development, The Social Hub aims to offer unique experiences to its community of international guests and locals.

The Social Hub’s total locations amount to 23, with 16 properties open in Berlin, The Hague, Delft, Vienna, Groningen, Eindhoven, Maastricht, Rotterdam, Paris, Florence, Bologna, Madrid, Barcelona, Toulouse and two in Amsterdam. Openings in 2023 include Glasgow, Porto and San Sebastián and more; by 2025, there will also be properties in Rome, Florence Belfiore, Lisbon and Turin.

On a responsible and impactful journey

The Social Hub is on a journey to be as responsible and impactful as possible – both in how we build our properties and how we engage with our communities. Our properties are developed and managed in accordance with BREEAM and GRESB standards and through our event programming we aim to inspire and activate our communities to contribute to a fairer and greener world. The Social Hub will start its journey towards B Corp Certification in 2023.

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