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Solomon (Sol) Kerzner,K.C.M.G.(born 23 August 1935) is aandbusiness magnate. His family started a hotel chain; after Kerzner graduated with a B.Com (Accounting), B.Com (Hons) (Accounting) from theUniversity of the WitwatersrandJohannesburgand qualified as aChartered Accountant,1he took over the running of the group and went on to create the most successful hotel group in South Africa,Sun International. He is now the Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Kerzner International and his career spans more than 45 years in the resort industry. He founded both of South Africas largest hotel groups,Southern Sun Hotel Group.

Kerzner was born in Troyeville,Johannesburg, South Africa, the son ofRussian Jewishimmigrants.2His parents owned and operated a chain of kosher hotels.2Kerzner graduated with a degree in accounting and then took control of the family company.2In 1962, he purchased the Astra Hotel in Durban. Following the success of that property, Kerzner built South Africas first five-star graded hotel in Umhlanga, a village north of Durban he opened this resort in December 1964 which he named the Beverly Hills Hotel.

Following the Beverly Hills, Kerzner built the 450-room Elangeni Hotel (now renamed Southern Sun Elangeni & Maharani), overlooking Durbans beachfront and, in 1969, in partnership with South African Breweries, he established the chain of Southern Sun Hotels, which by 1983 operated 30 luxury hotels with more than 7,000 rooms. In 1975, Kerzner opened his first hotel outside South Africa on the Indian Ocean Island of Mauritius which he named Le Saint Gran.

In 1979 Kerzner developedSun City, the most ambitious resort project in Africa. Over a period of ten years he built four hotels, a man-made lake, two Gary Player designed championship golf courses and entertainment center with an indoor 6,000-seat multi-purpose arena in which he presented many superstars includingFrank SinatraLiza MinnelliQueenandShirley Basseyand which was also the venue of many World Title fights promoted by Bob Arums Top Rank organisation. During 1985, Kerzners Sun City, South Africa resort was the topic of anti-Apartheid rock album titledSun Cityby a group of rock musicians calling themselvesArtists United Against Apartheid.

In 1994, following the first multiracial elections in South Africa, Kerzner was asked by incoming President Nelson Mandela to arrange the VIP function at the Presidential Inauguration, which was attended by approximately a thousand people, including many of the worlds leaders and heads of state.

In 1996, Kerzner opened the hugely successfulMohegan Suncasino inUncasville, Connecticutin the United States and in 2000 opened the second phase of the project including a 1,200-room hotel through a joint venture with theMohegan Tribe of Connecticutcalled Trading Cove Associates. TCA relinquished its management of the resort in 2002 but Kerzner through his company will still receive a 5% dividend on the gross revenue generated by Mohegan Sun until 2014. The property is one of the largest gambling and entertainment complexes in the United States.

As a result of the success of theSun Cityresort with its Gary Player Country Club golf course (ranked number 1 in South Africa) he got involved in international hotel, leisure and gambling resorts; most notable is his role as the innovative developer behind the well-knownAtlantisResort in theBahamas. In late 1994, Kerzner made his first major acquisition outside Africa through the purchase of the Paradise Island Resort in The Bahamas. This 1,150-room resort was in bankruptcy at the time. After acquiring the resort, Kerzner launched a major re-development and expansion program which transformed Paradise Island into a 2,300-room resort that included one of the worlds largest man-made marine habitats and the Caribbeans biggest casino.

In 2002, Kerzner launched One&Only Resorts which currently operates seven properties in The Bahamas, Mexico, Mauritius, The Maldives, South Africa, Dubai and Hayman Island.

In early 2007, Kerzner expanded Atlantis, Paradise Island with new hotels The Cove and The Reef which added 1,100 new rooms to the property. This expansion was overseen byAlan Leibman, which included 21 retail outlets and new restaurants by celebrity chefs Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Nobu Matsuhisa andBobby Flay. Kerzner extended the Atlantis brand globally with the development ofAtlantis, The Palm, Dubai, with 1,500-room, water-themed resort opened in late-September 2008 on ThePalm Jumeirah a multibillion-dollar leisure and residential development in Dubai. On September 2009, the Mazagan Beach Resort a luxury hotel in El Jadida (Morocco), has been inaugurated by Sol Kerzner him-self accompanied with many celebrities of show biz.

In October 2013, Kerzner announced that it is building a new Atlantis hotel atSanyaHainan Islandin China with ChinasFosun International. The 62-hectare resort will have 1,300 rooms and a water park like the other Atlantis hotels. The project will cost $1.63 billion.3

Kerzner has been married four times. His first wife was Maureen Adler; they had three children:4Butch Kerzner, Andrea Kerzner, and Beverly Kerzner Mace.56His second wife was Shirley Bestbier; they had two children: Brandon Kerzner and Chantal Kerzner Sweeney.57She later committed suicide2soon after the birth of her second child.5His third wife,Miss World1974Anneline Kriel, ended in divorce after five years.2During a lengthy period in the 1990s, he dated the modelChristina Estrada, got engaged, but never married her.8He married his fourth wife, model Heather Murphy in 2000;9they divorced in 2011.8

Kerzners son, Howard Butch Kerzner died on 11 October 2006 when thehelicopterhe was traveling in crashed nearSosua, in thePuerto Plataprovince of theDominican Republic.1011His daughter, Andrea, is the founder and CEO of Lalela, a charity dedicated to bringing the arts to at-risk youth in South Africa.12

Sunday Tribune: Sun sets on Sols empire By Vivian Attwood17 January 2012

UPDATE 1-Chinas Fosun, Sun City casino king bet on luxury Hainan resort.

The Independent: The great casino cash-in: the Sun King (and his shady past) by Paul Vallely1 February 2007

Evening Standard: Lucky Heather Kerzner by Lydia Slater27 November 2009

new York Times: Evening Hours; Wildlife WatchingMay 8, 1994

The Sunday Telegraph: Man With A Mission15 April 2007

Evening Standard: Sol Kerzner put business before our marriage, says wife by Simon Freeman3 October 2011

New York Times: Howard Brett Kerzner, 42, Dies; Led Global Resort Developer By Jenny Anderson13 October 2006

Bahamas Tribune: Butch Kerzner Killed – Butch Kerzner, who with his father Sol created the Atlantis dream for the Bahamas, was killed yesterday in a helicopter crash in the Dominican Republic by John Marquis12 October 2006

Elle South Africa: ELLE MEETS ANDREA KERZNER OF LALELA – ELLE chats with Andrea Kerzner, founder and CEO of Lalela, an organisation that is using the arts curriculum to bring about meaningful change in the lives of at-risk youth by Dimeji AlaraMay 9, 2016

Honorary Knights Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George

South African people of Russian-Jewish descent

Articles with a promotional tone from August 2016

This page was last edited on 2 December 2018, at 15:52

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