PR nightmare continues for GUCCI with Elisabetta Gucci announcing more hotels

LUXURY hotelier Elisabetta Gucci is planning 40 hotels over the next 15 years in the Middle East, Far East and South America and aims to open its first hotel in Dubai at the end of 2010, an executive said.

Partner Lorens Ziller at Elisabetta Gucci Hotels & Resorts told the Reuters Global Luxury Summit the construction of the 87-room luxury boutique hotel is completed, with the firm eyeing a second hotel in China next year. Elisabetta Gucci is daughter of Italian fashion designer Paolo Gucci. ’We intend to develop other hotels for the GCC, and outside our focus will be Russia, China, Far East, Africa and South America, particularly Brazil,’ said Mr Ziller. ‘We would like to have 40 hotels in 15 years but think this can be over achieved.’ The Elisabetta Gucci hotel was originally scheduled to open by the end of 2009 but was delayed by a year, said Mr Ziller. REUTERS

This has been proving to be a very challenging PR case for GUCCI, owned by PPR, as it seems former owner, the Gucci family has been pursuing projecs utilizing the Gucci name in contradiction with the legal restrictions agreed at the time of the sale. Other Gucci family members launched earlier this year a leather accessories collection. Such Gucci branded projects will prove to be very detrimental to the GUCCI brand, especially given the fact the brand has for long time succeeded in staying away from brand diversifications such as furniture, mobile phones or hotels. CPP