Many investors have dreamt of transforming London’s iconic Admiralty Arch into a luxury hotel; few possess the access to the global network of prestigious long-term investors and the established relationships with National and Local Governments that were required to create and secure a deal of this scale and complexity.
Rafael Serrano has successfully turned that dream into a profitable reality. Founder and CEO of Prime Investors Capital Ltd, Serrano had the entrepreneurial vision, coupled with unique access to off-market deal flows and development opportunities, to build a winning investment and delivery team.
In October 2012, Prime Investors Capital led a UK-based team of 20 British companies to secure the high profile – and winning – bid to purchase a 125-year lease of Admiralty Arch from the UK Government. Serrano and his team came to the table with an enviable track record in managing high-end residential and luxury hotel projects in prime locations from sourcing to completion: previous multi-million-pound hotel investment projects include the Bvlgari Hotel and Residences in London’s Knightsbridge.
In August 2013, Prime Investors Capital was granted full planning permission by Westminster City Council for Serrano’s innovative plans to transform the ceremonial gateway between The Mall and Trafalgar Square, which was at risk of falling into disrepair, into a luxury 100-room hotel, private residences and a members’ club.
In June 2015, Serrano successfully completed the extension of the lease of Admiralty Arch to 250 years – a considerable coup which further strengthened long-term investment opportunities.
The renovation and restoration of this Grade 1 listed building commenced on August 2017. Serrano has successfully appointed and led a team of celebrated renovation experts, artisans and historians, along with a prestigious roll call of British companies who have worked together to transform this cultural gem into what is certain to become one of the world’s most prestigious hotels.
Born in Madrid, Serrano began his career at JP Morgan as an Investment Banker in Capital Markets and International Fund Management, working in London and on Wall Street, New York. His numerous senior positions include Managing Director of Focus Investment Group, Europe, a leading investment management company.
Serrano holds a Master’s Degree in Law from the University Complutense of Madrid, and a Postgraduate Certificate in Finance and Investment Portfolio from the London Business School. A member of the Investment Property Forum, Serrano also enjoys his role as member of the William Pitt Group of The Royal Institute of International Affairs. He also supports The Georgian Group and follower of the Oxford Martin School in association with Oxford University.
Actively involved in numerous philanthropic and not-for-profit causes, he has held the position as Vice President at the British Red Cross annual fundraiser and continues to support Save the Children, Women for Women International, CRIS Cancer; an independent non-profit organisation dedicated to the promotion and development of research to fight against cancer and Thames Reach; a London charity helping the homeless and vulnerable. Serrano is also committed to promoting the Arts, donating to young up-and-coming artists and privately to the Tate Gallery.
In November 2012, Serrano was named in the top 1000 most influential Londoners by the Evening Standard newspaper, and of those ranked within the top 30 property developers, alongside the Duke of Westminster and Emir of Qatar.
About Prime Investors Capital
Founded by Rafael Serrano in 2009, Prime Investors Capital has built an international network of key long-term investors and has gained worldwide access to a sophisticated community that understands off-market deals.
Prime Investors Capital (PIC), is a London-based investment management company that is dedicated to producing superior returns, by advising and financing investments in the areas of finance, private equity and property.
This unique access to off-market deal flows and investment opportunities is a product of the company’s commitment to establishing and nurturing strong relationships and prestigious partners, including National and Local Governments; institutional and sovereign wealth funds; corporations; family-owned businesses and trusts, and high-net-worth individuals.
PIC’s high-profile ventures include acting as the initiator and adviser for the sale and completion of the lease for the Kingdom of Spain concerning the Spanish Instituto Cervantes (Eton Square, Belgravia) in London, in 2014.
One of the company’s greatest successes to date is the renowned Bvlgari Hotel and Residences in London, where Prime Investors Capital was responsible for the origination, funding and development of the project. With an original site purchase of less than £125m, to a current valuation of over £400m.
For more information on the team please follow the links below to the contributors section.