Hilton Garden Inn Tirana was the first to announce that it would not host visitors indefinitely starting in April 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic put the hospitality sector in Albania in difficulty. There were quite a few large hotels which closed their doors. But now Hilton Garden Inn is open.
The company reported a loss of 41 million ALL in 2020 due to the closure. Revenue generated were ALL 38 million 6 times lower than in the previous year when it had ALL 230 million. Although 2019 was positive it was still 53 percent less than revenue in 2018.
In 2018, the Hilton hotel chain entered the Albanian market through the Hilton Garden Inn Tirana. It happened after negotiations in 2014 with the entrepreneur Ali Selmani. The entry of an international brand came just months after the sensational departure of Sheraton.
Later, other brands announced their entry into the Albanian market; through partnerships with Albanian enterprises in a year when a favorable fiscal package was approved for investors bringing well-known brands.
Marriott was another name that announced it would come to Albania, in the tower of the Air Albania stadium. But then the company stated that it had postponed its plans due to the pandemic. Other names that have joined the Albanian market are MK Hotel near Tirana Business Park, an investment of the Germans of Lindner, Movenpick in Lalëz, Accor, Maritime or recently Radisson in Tirana.
Also other names like Hyatt have stated that they will also be part of the Albanian market always according to the formula of partnership with local entrepreneurs.
Generally this formula allows hotels to use the brand name against meeting the standards required by the latter by paying a fee agreed in advance and paid for the rooms of each facility or even other element included in the contract.