Shivani DDPPL

GCC to add 58,761 hotel rooms in 2019


STR data shows that the Gulf Cooperation Council is expecting an additional 58,761 hotel rooms to enter the market in 2019. Danielle Curtis, Exhibition Director ME, Arabian Travel Market, says, “It is important to highlight that the GCC is one of the fastest growing regional hospitality markets on a global scale, with the UAE leading the way as it gears up for Expo 2020 which is now less than two years away. Dubai’s hotel supply alone is expected to reach 132,000 in 2019, with the emirate aiming to complete 160,000 hotel rooms by October 2020 – in time to welcome 25 million visitors for Expo 2020.” The leading contributors are the UAE with 31,517 rooms (53%) in the pipeline; Saudi Arabia with 24,170 (41%); and Oman with 2,984 (5%). Reed Travel Exhibitions, organiser of the annual Arabian Travel Market (ATM) showcase in Dubai, which will take place at the Dubai World Trade Centre from April 28 – May 1, 2019, has announced that it will host the first ATM Hotel Industry Summit as part of its line-up of special events. The inaugural summit, scheduled to take place on Tuesday April 30, on the Global Stage, will see various panels of experts discuss the latest hotel infrastructure developments, investment opportunities and digital innovations which are shaping the region’s ever-changing industry. The UAE hospitality market is expected to be worth $7.6 billion annually by 2022, growing at a five-year Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 8.5% between 2017 and 2022, driven by Dubai’s Expo 2020, Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 and various other government initiatives to boost travel and tourism across the region. Over the same period, hotel supply is expected to grow …

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Shaza Hotel Residences debuts in Riyadh

Shaza Hotel Residences, Riyadh

Shaza Hotels, a member of the Global Hotel Alliance, has announced the opening of Shaza Hotel Residences, Riyadh. The property is the first for the brand in Riyadh and its third in KSA. It is also the first extended stay property to open for Shaza Hotels. 205 residences at the property have been designed for the needs of long-stay guests, complete with walk-in wardrobes and kitchenettes. Adding a new dimension to the experience are the hotel’s bespoke services, restaurants and meeting spaces. Khalid Saud Abu Haimed, Chief Executive Officer of Sulaiman Abdulaziz Al Rajhi Real Estate Investments Company said, “After the successful launch of Shaza Makkah last year, it is with great pleasure that we bring Shaza Hotel Residences, Riyadh to the market. The unique hotel residences, by its design and excellent quality of services, will meet the ever-increasing expectations of local and international guests. We are looking forward to becoming the new preferred destination for families and business travellers during their stay in Riyadh.” Simon Coombs, President and CEO of Shaza Hotels, commented: “Opening of Shaza Hotel Residences, Riyadh marks a key milestone for Shaza Hotels. We are honoured to partner with Al Rajhi Investments for a second property, in opening their flagship hotel residences in the Riyadh. It is our endeavor to create a new approach, one of handcrafted guest experiences in an urban retreat in the capital. In tune with the potential of vision 2030, Shaza Hotels will strive to create distinctive hotels in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”

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Etihad adds 20 more flights to London from April

Etihad Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner

Etihad Airways will increase its flights from Abu Dhabi to London Heathrow, from three to four daily services, to meet peak demand during the month of April. Starting from April 5, 2019, the flights will be operated by a two-class Boeing 787-9, featuring Etihad Airways’ next-generation Business and Economy cabins, configured with 299 seats – 28 Business Studios and 271 Economy Smart Seats. James Harrison, General Manager for Etihad Airways in the United Kingdom and Ireland, said: “We are thrilled to announce more flights to London during April, in response to increased demand in the lead up to and post the Easter holidays. This is a busy travel time for families looking to enjoy the extended school holiday. This extra service will allow our guests more choice and flexibility with their travel plans.” These services will operate in addition to Etihad Airways’ regularly scheduled 3 daily Abu Dhabi to London services, which will continue to operate with Airbus A380 aircraft, offering Economy, Business, First and The Residence. The additional services will provide more flexibility for guests traveling between both capitals and those connecting onwards to key destinations on Etihad’s global network.

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Emirates to launch four weekly flights to Porto, Portugal, from July 2

Emirates Boeing 777-300ER

Emirates will launch a four times weekly service between Portugal’s second largest city, Porto, and Dubai, from 2 July 2019. Porto will become Emirates’ second destination in Portugal after its capital, Lisbon, which the airline currently serves with two flights a day. The flight will be operated by a Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in a three class cabin configuration, offering eight private suites in First Class, 42 lie flat seats in Business Class and 310 spacious seats in Economy Class. Emirates’ new service will provide travellers in northern Portugal, a major urban area, as well as those in the north-west of Spain in cities such as Vigo and Santiago de Compostela, due to its close proximity to Porto, with a direct option to travel to Dubai, and onward to destinations across the airline’s global network, particularly in Africa, Asia, Australia and the Middle East.

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246-room S Hotel opens in Al Barsha Dubai

The S Hotel Al Barsha Grand Opening image 3

The S Hotel Al Barsha, centrally located at the heart of the new lifestyle hub of the city – the Dubai Science Park in Al Barsha has opened its door for the guests. “We are pleased to launch The S Hotel Al Barsha, a new gem in Dubai’s growing travel and tourism scene,” says Shailesh Grover, General Manager of The S Hotel Al Barsha. “We offer local residents, hotel guests and tourists a premium accommodation combining connectivity and convenience. We want them to treat our hotel as their own home during their stay. Our target market would be travelers and tourists from GCC & Middle East, Southeast Asia, Far East Asia, Europe and Latin America. We also plan to target other evolving markets who visit the UAE often for business or pleasure,” Grover adds. The 4-star property offers its guests a calming and relaxing ambience through its personalized service where Middle Eastern charm meets with superb hospitality. Featuring 246 spacious and well-equipped rooms, 12 stunning suites, three distinctly themed restaurants and a world-class spa where guests can bid their stress goodbye, The S Hotel Al Barsha ups the ante in the hospitality industry in Dubai. Mr. Marwan Abdulaziz Janahi – Managing Director of Dubai Science Park (DSP) said: “As Dubai Science Park continues to expand, we are pleased to welcome the first S Hotel to the region. The launch of The S Hotel Al Barsha assists in diversifying our offerings within our community as professionals continue to work and live on the premises. Our Science community supports the introduction of this hotel, which will be crucial in supporting our residents with options provided for events, dining and community initiatives. We …

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Bin Moosa Travels partners with Travelport’s mobile app for TMCs and travel agencies

Guy Bell, 07771 786236,

Travelport has announced the signing of an agreement with United Arab Emirates (UAE)-based Bin Moosa Travels to deploy Trip Assist, its advanced mobile application for travel management companies and travel agencies. Travelport has now secured more than 45 Trip Assist customers across the world. Bin Moosa Travels will benefit from a fully branded mobile engagement solution that allows it to support, engage and connect with travellers at every stage of their journey. Incorporating smart itinerary management capabilities and the ability to create agency defined messages and rich push notifications; the solution will empower the agency to build stronger relationships with its customers. Trip Assist will support Bin Moosa Travels’ customers by allowing them to share and organize their complex travel plans on the go and from one place. It will also give them greater autonomy to self-serve with features that enable airline check-in, the ability to import external bookings and ‘click to call’ support. By giving travelers more control, the solution will also provide the agent with more time to spend on more specialist travel enquiries. Mary Thomas, Managing Director of Bin Moosa Travels, said: “People in the UAE are extremely digitally savvy and fully expect support to be delivered 24/7 throughout their travel journey, across multiple physical and digital channels. By using Trip Assist, we will be able to deliver a new standard of digital service to our customers, while freeing up our consultants to spend more time providing expert advice.” Kathryn Wallington, Travelport’s Country Manager for the UAE, said: “With Cozmo Travel already signed up, we now have two Trip Assist customers in the Emirates. With demand from travelers for best-in-class mobile travel solutions escalating in the UAE, …

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Gulf Hotels Group debuts in UAE with The Gulf Court Hotel Business Bay

Gulf hotels (2)

Gulf Hotels Group (GHG), Bahrain’s leading home-grown hospitality provider has opened its first UAE property, The Gulf Court Hotel Business Bay. The 4-star property marks the first phase of GHG’s expansion plan across the region. The property has 270 rooms, categorised between Standard, Superior, Deluxe, Grand Deluxe, Executive Suites, Luxury Suites and two Penthouse Suites. Guests can also enjoy Club Lounge/ benefits, business centre, swimming pool, gym, and a choice of six dining options that include Café Délices, Al Waha Restaurant, Naisa Oriental Restaurant, Sports On 4, The Canal Lounge, and The Other Office Karaoke. Business travellers can take advantage of the meeting rooms that are equipped with state-of-the-art AV equipment. Garfield Jones, Gulf Hotels Group CEO, said, “The opening of Gulf Court Hotel Business Bay represents the first step on the Group’s strategy to expand hospitality operations into the MENA region, and we are aiming to follow up the opening of the hotel with further expansion both in the UAE and neighbouring GCC countries. The Gulf Court Hotel offers visitors a true taste of Arabic hospitality that our hotels in Bahrain – the Gulf Hotel, The K Hotel and Asdal Gulf Inn – are renowned for. It also builds on the company’s reputation for delivering an excellent food, beverage and leisure product.”

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TIME to operate Dunes Hotel Apartments in Dubai


UAE-headquartered, TIME Hotels Management has signed a new agreement to operate Dunes Hotel Apartments’ three properties located throughout Dubai- Al Barsha, Al Qusais and Oud Metha. TIME portfolio will grow to 20 properties by 2020. TIME Hotels took over day-to-day operations of the properties following the signing of a management agreement on January 24, 2019 in Dubai between Mohamed Awadalla, CEO, TIME Hotels and Abdallah Mohamed Jaber Al Harbi, Owner, Dunes Hotel Apartments. Commenting on the new management agreement, TIME Hotels CEO, Mohamed Awadalla, said: “Our partnership with Dunes Hotel Apartments further reinforces our growth strategy to expand our footprint in the UAE with further openings in Dubai, and Sharjah, as well as other properties across the region in Saudi Arabia and Egypt – taking our total portfolio to 20 properties by the end of 2020. TIME hotels have a great deal of experience across the UAE, and more importantly an in-depth understanding of how to add value and drive in business.” TIME Dunes Hotel Apartment Al Barsha comprises 84 rooms, while TIME Dunes Hotel Apartments Al Qusais features 80 rooms and TIME Dunes Hotel Apartments Oud Metha has 108 rooms in total. All three properties include studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments – with the Al Barsha property also offering three-bedroom penthouse apartments. Each property features Dunes Delight restaurant which serves Middle Eastern, Arabic, Indian and Chinese cuisine. Guests also have access to a health and fitness centre with a fully-equipped gym and separate male and female steam rooms; heated outdoor swimming pool; a business centre and 24-hour reception and maintenance service. All three properties will undergo a rebrand in February, becoming TIME Dunes Hotel Apartment Al Barsha, TIME Dunes …

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Emirates launches Expo 2020-themed aircraft model collection

Expo livery 2 (1)

The Emirates Official Store has launched a new limited edition collection of Expo 2020 themed aircraft models for aviation enthusiasts and passionate scale-modellers. The highly detailed models are part of a 15 aircraft model collection ranging from Airbus A380s to Boeing 777s featuring the signature Expo 2020 logo in three colours – blue, orange and green representing the three themes of mobility, opportunity and sustainability. The aircraft model replicas are available in both plastic hollow and solid injected finishes, as well as die-cast metal versions, all with meticulously detailed graphics in the three colours that are currently emblazoned on select Emirates A380 and Boeing 777 liveries. The scale models come in the following sizes: Emirates A380 Expo 2020 1/200 scale models in the three colours in a solid plastic finish, Emirates 777-300ER Expo 2020 1/200 scale models in a hollow plastic finish that can be easily assembled, Emirates A380 Expo 2020 1/250 scale models in a hollow plastic finish which easily clips together,Emirates A380 Expo 2020 1/400 scale model is the smallest aircraft collectable in the Expo 2020 collection and comes in a die-cast metal finish and Emirates 777-300ER Expo 2020 1/400 scale models which comes in a metal die-cast finish. The Expo 2020 themed Emirates aircraft models can be found at all Emirates Official retail stores in the UAE, Emirates Store online as well as Emirates Official Store shops at Dubai International Airport. Select aircraft models will also be sold onboard Emirates flights from March 2019. An official Expo 2020 partner, Emirates has installed three different Expo 2020 decal designs on 40 aircraft in its fleet, taking the event’s three key themes: opportunity (orange), mobility (blue), and sustainability (green), …

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Four Points by Sheraton unveils in Sharjah

FPSS Ribbon Cutting

Four points by Sheraton opened its doors in Sharjah with 225 rooms. The hotel stands at the end of the famous Sharjah Buhairah Corniche with easy access to the famous Blue and Gold Souq, offering a variety of options for dining and family entertainment. The hotel provides a complimentary shuttle bus service for guests to visit the picturesque beach side. Four Points by Sheraton Sharjah features 225 contemporary and spacious rooms, including inter-connecting and twin rooms designed to suit the needs of families or large groups staying for an extended duration. Reflecting the brand’s promise to provide today’s independent travelers with balance, the hotel offers the brand’s defining touches including complimentary bottled water in all rooms, fast and free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel and an energizing breakfast with fresh coffee that helps guests start the day right. Every room has the Four Points by Sheraton Comfort Bed, fitted with a plush mattress and down duvet and pillows for the perfect night’s sleep. Four Points by Sheraton Sharjah also caters to the needs of business travelers offering six meeting rooms equipped with the latest technology and a dedicated events team tasked to deliver seamless business experiences. “We are delighted to open the first Four Points by Sheraton in the Emirate complimenting Marriott International’s footprint in Sharjah and diversifying the tourist experience in line with Sharjah Tourism Vision 2021. The hotel offers business and leisure travelers with the brand’s comfortable hospitality experience and is positioned in an ideal location to explore the city,” said Alex Kyriakidis, President and Managing Director, Middle East & Africa, Marriot International. “The Four Points by Sheraton Sharjah team is excited to open its doors and serve our …

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