Hyatt Hotels Corporation (NYSE: H) today announced that a wholly owned Hyatt subsidiary plans to purchase the 1,641-room Peabody Orlando hotel for $717 million from UST Hotel Joint Venture, Ltd., comprised of affiliates of Belz Enterprises and Estein & Associates USA, Ltd. The transaction is expected to close on October 1, 2013, and the hotel will be rebranded as Hyatt Regency Orlando Convention Center upon closing. “This transaction brings us a very high-quality hotel in one of the most popular cities in the world and enhances the Hyatt Regency brand – already a leader in meetings and conventions – with a presence adjacent to one of the largest convention facilities in the U.S.,” said Stephen Haggerty, global head, real estate and capital strategy for Hyatt. “We are confident that we will be able to build on the strong performance of this property through the depth and breadth of our relationships with meeting planners and corporate travel managers and the global strength of our brand. Orlando, the second largest hotel market in the United States, continues to benefit from strong demand from a variety of different types of guests. The strong base of business booked at the Orange County Convention Center over the coming years demonstrates the attractiveness of the market to associations and corporate groups. The overall number of visitors to Orlando continues to increase and it remains one of the most visited vacation destinations. This addition to the Hyatt Regency portfolio will create value for the company in multiple ways and is consistent with our strategy of applying our capital to increase our brand presence in key markets.” Hyatt Regency Orlando Convention Center will be the sixth Hyatt-branded hotel in Orlando, but the first large convention hotel presence for Hyatt in the market. The property will be a significant addition to the Hyatt Regency brand, which is well known for extensive meetings facilities around the world. With more than 200,000 square feet of meeting space – and with over two million square feet of space in the Orange County Convention Center to which the hotel is attached – the hotel will offer the most meeting space of any Hyatt Regency hotel in the U.S. and will position the company to compete successfully for in-house group business in addition to citywide convention business.