Maven pumps £2m into boutique hotels booking platform

Glasgow-headquartered private equity house Maven Capital Partners has made its third online investment in six months with the announcement that it will put up to £2 million into Chic Lifestyle, which runs a platform for the boutique hotel and villa market.

Maven praised the 'high calibre' of Chic Retreats' management team. Picture: Contributed
Maven praised the 'high calibre' of Chic Retreats' management team. Picture: Contributed

Trading as Chic Retreats, the London-based company was set up in 2002 as a curated listings site, but is now developing software that allows its clients to manage bookings from a variety of online sources. The investment by Maven will help complete development of its core technology while also enhancing the mobile offering and expanding into new territories.

The firm aims to capitalise on the rising demand for “authentic local” travel experiences which has been driving growth in the independent hotel and villa market. Establishments are able to join Chic Retreats by invitation only, and are vetted to ensure the exclusivity of the network.

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Stella Panu, partner at Maven, said the Chic Retreats technology is firmly focused on the needs within its chosen sector.

“We have been impressed by the high calibre of the management team and its commitment to fully understanding its customers’ businesses and create a marketplace that puts the company in a leading position to deliver a one-stop tailored solution to its members,” she added.

The deal follows a £2.5m investment by Maven earlier this year in The GP Service, and a £5m funding deal for Rockar jointly funded by Maven and NVM Private Equity.

Amir Azulay, chief executive of Chic Retreats, said smaller hotels are well placed to aid travellers in experiencing a destination “as a local would”.