Hungarian hotel chain Hunguest Hotels is implementing a large-scale renovating and upgrading programme that affects 14 hotels of the hotel chain. While the whole programme will take several years, three hotels out of the 14 are to open after the completion of their renovation by the end of this year, which will result in a workforce expansion of more than 200. Further expansion will take place in the coming years, along with the progress of the programme, according to the plan. The overall investment cost is roughly €360 million, nearly €50 million of which comes from government subsidy.
Hunguest Hotels is the chain with the largest number of hotels in Hungary outside the capital. Among the aims of the upgrading programme, it is the one to attract more young visitors and to expand the scope of wellness services in the hotels.
The €50 million state subsidy to the chain Hunguest Hotels drew criticism in the spring of 2020, as it is the largest hotel sector-related subsidy so far and because, simultaneously with the announcement of the subsidy, the hotel chain laid off about half of its personnel. The management countered that the layoffs were inevitable due to the renovations and were unrelated to the fact that the hotels had to be closed due to the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in the spring of 2020. Also, the management said that while the overall magnitude of subsidy for the group is record high, the average sum of subsidy for the individual Hunguest hotels affected by the renovation programme is not.