Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo is becoming a hotelier after announcing that he's made a Dhs146 million investment into several boutique hotels. In co-operation with one of Portugal's leading tourism firms Pestana Hotel Group, Ronaldo is set to open four hotels under his CR7 brand.
Despite competition from other hospitality organisations including Airbnb, Ronaldo is confident his business venture will take off, saying, "I'm 100 percent sure that this is going to be different from others because of my name, the way I live, my ambitions. Between this base of people — people who like me, the people who follow me — I think we have all the ingredients to do it."
The four hotels are planned to be built in cities with a connection to him: his hometown Funchal, Lisbon, where he started his professional career, Madrid, where he currently plays and finally New York, a possible future career move to the Major League Soccer. The first three hotels are scheduled to be opened within the next two years.
This will be Ronaldo's first investment outside of fashion and sport. He currently has his own brand of shoes, fragrances and apparel. Away from business, Ronaldo has a museum dedicated to him and he recently released his bipoic film in November, 2015.