Karen is based in Bird & Bird's London office and leads its international Hotels, Hospitality and Leisure Group. Karen specialises in the sale, purchase and development and of all types of hotel property and business, from budget to luxury. She is accomplished in the negotiation of hotel management agreements having concluded a number of recent high profile projects, both in the UK and overseas. She frequently provides strategic advice to hotel owners and operators on management and franchise agreements.
Karen is a regular panellist at hotel industry conferences and is highly regarded in the legal directories as an expert in the hotels/leisure sector. Chambers 2020 states that : “Karen Friebe is noted for her expertise in portfolio acquisitions and disposals in the hotel and leisure industry both nationally and internationally. She also has experience dealing with hotel management agreements and project development matters". The Legal 500 UK 2020 notes that “Bird & Bird LLP’s hotel and leisure practice continues to flourish under the leadership of highly recommended Karen Friebe”
Karen is a founder member of the Women in Hospitality Network, which aims to support and provide mentoring opportunities for women wishing to further their careers in the hospitality sector and which hosts bi-annual networking events including a popular breakfast event at IHIF.
Karen also co-founded Real Estate Balance (www.realestatebalance.org.uk), an organisation which brings together men and women from all areas of the real estate sector with the objective of supporting and promoting women into more senior roles in the sector.