Category Archives: Hotels

Sofitel’s largest property in ME to open in 2019

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The largest property of Sofitel in the Middle East, Sofitel Dubai Wafi, is expected to open in early 2019. Being developed in collaboration with development partner MKM Commercial Holdings LLC, it will feature 501 luxury guestrooms, inclusive of 86 suites — ranging in size from 55 sq. m. to 625 sq. m. — in addition to 97 studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom serviced residences, which would be operated on an extended-stay basis. Also, there will be a number of dining venues, including an Asian speciality restaurant, gastro pub, a unique destination restaurant, bar and lounge on the 43rd and 44th floors, a French lobby café, an all-day restaurant and a pool bar. Guests will also have the option to relax and unwind at the SoSpa or work out at the comprehensive gymnasium. Also a part of the property will be few outdoor pools, private cabanas and a kids club. Business travellers will have access to 10 meeting rooms, in addition to an 1115 sq. m. ballroom. Sami Nasser, Chief Operating Officer, Luxury Brands, AccorHotels Middle East, commented, “We are delighted to work with MKM Commercial Holdings, one of our long standing partners, to develop this impressive project that will undoubtedly become a future flagship for Sofitel in the region. The development of this property is aligned with our strategy to operate one of our leading luxury brands across strategic locations in the Middle East.”

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Ascott customises to cater to Arabic guests


International serviced-residence owner-operator The Ascott Limited has launched a dedicated Arabic website to meet the demand of its Arabic guests. The new website,, designed in both Arabic and English, offers in-depth information on properties as well as other areas such as “Ascott Social”, and also promotional ads, guest blogs, stories on the events happening at various properties, social media feeds and a local’s perspective of “City Life”. To complement the launch, Ascott is running a competition to win weekend getaways to Paris or other destinations across the GCC. “A large percentage of our guests within the GCC are Arabic and we are excited to be able to offer them the convenience of booking online in their preferred language,” said Vincent Miccolis, Ascott’s Country General Manager, Middle East & Turkey.

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Seven Tides launches five-year payment plan for Anantara The Palm Dubai Residences


Seven Tides has launched a new five-year payment plan for its Anantara The Palm Dubai Residences. Potential buyers can purchase ready-to-move-in properties in the luxury development with a deposit of 20% of the total sales price. A further 5% would be paid every quarter thereafter, starting 12 months from the date of the initial reservation agreement. From the original 449 units, there are now only 160 left, comprising one- and two-bedroom apartments. The one-bedroom apartments are available in various sizes between 1156 sq. ft. and 1560 sq. ft. and their price starts from AED 2,730,000; while the two-bedroom apartments, with land area varying between 1774 sq. ft. and 2248 sq. ft., have their starting price fixed at AED 3,990,000. Abdulla Bin Sulayem, CEO, Seven Tides, says “This is an excellent opportunity for people to own a property in the Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort development, which offers Thai-inspired luxury on Palm Jumeirah. These apartments are perfect as second or holiday homes, where residents can take advantage of the facilities and amenities within the five-star resort, away from the hustle and bustle of the city. We can also assist with a leasing strategy on a long-term basis or the apartment can be added to the hotel rental management scheme, whereby the unit becomes a part of the hotel inventory and sales are managed by the hotel reservations team.” The properties feature high-quality furnishings; parquet flooring; an Opus smart home system; separate air conditioning control; LCD televisions; en-suite master bedrooms with king-size beds and second bedrooms with twin beds; walk-in wardrobes; fully equipped kitchens; spacious balconies with spectacular views overlooking the Arabian Gulf, the Atlantis, the Burj Al Arab and the Palm; …

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Staybridge Suites opens in Jeddah


InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has announced the opening of Staybridge Suites Jeddah Alandalus Mall in Alandalus Mall, a prominent shopping destination in Jeddah, with an annual visitor rate exceeding 13 million visitors. The hotel’s connection to Alandalus Mall makes it an attractive location for families as well as transit guests to Makkah. The new hotel has 164 suites: a mix of studios, one- and two-bedroom suites, complete with spacious living areas, fully equipped kitchens, guest laundry rooms and high-speed internet connections. Additionally, the Alandalus Mall will complement the hotel’s facilities with offer 7 meeting rooms, a banquet hall, an outdoor swimming pool, a spa, a gym and a business centre. Both business travellers and tourists can now choose this ideal location, situated in the heart of modern Jeddah. The hotel is linked to the most important and vital roads to the south, west and east, including King Abdullah Road and Prince Majed Road, which connect it to the new King Abdulaziz Airport, with a commute of less than 15 minutes. The hotel is also close to Al Haramain Train Station, allowing guests to reach the Grand Mosque in less than 20 minutes. Pascal Gauvin, Chief Operating Officer – IMEA, IHG says, “As part of IHG’s diverse family of brands, Staybridge Suites endeavours to provide guests with the best extended-stay experience possible. We believe our unique offering, coupled with an excellent location near the heart of Jeddah, will allow Staybridge Suites to serve the needs of Saudi Arabia’s families, religious and leisure tourists, and business travellers alike.”

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Emaar hospitality launches 360° virtual tours of its hotels in Dubai

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In another technology first, Emaar Hospitality Group, the hospitality and leisure business of Emaar Properties PJSC, has introduced panoramic, 360° virtual tours of its hotels in Dubai. The virtual tours, comprising high-definition photographs and videos, offer visitors the opportunity to experience the unique value propositions of each hotel, discover its myriad facets and make an informed decision regarding the purchase – be it for booking hotel stays, restaurants or spas. These virtual tours cover properties under the premium luxury hotel and serviced residences brand, Address Hotels and Resorts; the upscale lifestyle hotel and serviced residences brand, Vida Hotels and Resorts and the new contemporary mid-scale hotel and serviced residences brand, Rove Hotels. The visitors are virtually taken through the spectacular architecture that defines properties under the Address Hotel and Resorts, including Address Boulevard, Address Dubai Marina, Address Dubai Mall, Address Montgomerie and Palace Downtown. Also, they virtually get to see the exceptional ambience offered by Vida Downtown and Manzil Downtown, as well as the three Rove Hotels that are currently operational in central locations across the city – Rove Downtown, Rove City Centre and Rove Healthcare City. To view, navigate to the master-brand pages, which will take you to individual hotel websites, where you can take the interactive tours.

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Dubai Parks and Resorts’ holiday gift to tourists — dxbpass and summer camp


Dubai Parks and Resorts, the region’s largest theme park destination announced the introduction of a special summer pass for visitors to enjoy access to the destination and four other attractions across Dubai. The dxbpass offers guests the chance to tour the world class theme parks at Dubai Parks and Resorts — Bollywood Parks™, MOTIONGATE™ Dubai, LEGOLAND® Dubai and LEGOLAND® Water Park, as well as Hub Zero, Mattel Play! Town, Green Planet and Splash Pad, along with a 20% discount on selected restaurants at Riverland™ Dubai and Lapita™ Hotel. The pass was introduced for purchase on June 4 and will be valid from June 15 to August 31. It can be booked online, on its website. In addition to the dxbpass, Dubai Parks and Resorts is also organizing a two-week edutainment Summer Camp, allowing children to play, explore and experience unlimited fun at Dubai’s best attractions. This two-week Summer Camp offers endless opportunities to engage children’s curiosity as well as boost their confidence and creativity at locations across the city. Experiences vary from treasure hunts at LEGOLAND® Dubai and Green Planet to indoor dance classes at Bollywood Parks™ Dubai and MOTIONGATE™ Dubai as well as movie experiences at Roxy Cinemas.

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New 5-star hotel in Jeddah by Elaf

Ziyad Bin Mahfouz, CEO, Elaf Group image

The Elaf Group of Companies, a SEDCO Holding Group company and a leading provider of travel, tourism and hospitality services, has announced the opening of its latest five-star hotel in Jeddah. The latest addition to Elaf Group’s growing portfolio of hotels is part of its recent implementation of a strategic expansion initiative, aimed at further reinforcing its leading presence in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s booming tourism and hospitality segment — in line with the goals and objectives of Saudi Vision 2030 to support the national economy and to promote tourism, particularly tourism for religious purposes, as a key contributor in the efforts to achieve a non-oil economy. Ziyad Bin Mahfouz, CEO, Elaf Group, said, “The new hotel is being expected to help address the demand for more hotel rooms in Jeddah, which clearly demonstrates the country’s rapidly thriving tourism industry — ably reflected in its continuous Year-on-Year (YoY) growth. Rest assured, we remain steadfast in our commitment to provide the highest quality of services to offer an unforgettable experience in our hotel and exemplary service to our guests.

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Swiss-Belhotel plans two properties in Kuwait

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Swiss-Belhotel International (SBI) has entered into a management agreement with Omniyat Real Estate to operate two fantastic properties in Kuwait. Both Swiss-Belboutique Bneid Al Gar and Swiss-Belresidences Al Sharq are under development and expected to open in 2018. Swiss-Belboutique Bneid Al Gar will be a comfortable and stylish address for both business and leisure travellers offering a home-away-from-home experience. Featuring 58 rooms equipped with top-notch facilities, the hotel enjoys an exceptional location in Kuwait City with no other international hotel brand having a presence in the area. Included in its facilities will be two superb restaurants, lobby café, spa, health club and swimming pool. Swiss-Belresidences Al Sharq will serve as a great base for corporate travellers being strategically located in the business district near Souq Sharq. It will offer guests a choice of 68 one and two bedroom hotel apartments with fully-equipped kitchen facilities. The hotel will also feature an all-day-dining restaurant, a deli corner in the lobby, and a swimming pool. The steady growth of tourism in Kuwait, with a vision to welcome 440,000 visitors annually by 2024 is fueling the demand for quality hotels.

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2550 hotel apartments by Schon and Al Hamad at Expo venue in Dubai


Schon Properties and Al Hamad Group announced a joint venture to develop iSuites, a massive Dh3.2 billion ($870 million) home-grown hospitality portfolio that will see the development of 2,550 hotel apartments at a single site within Dubai Investment Park – close to the World Expo 2020 venue. The entire complex includes 21 buildings – comprising 2,550 hotel suites, 52 restaurants and outdoor cafes, 125,000 square feet shopping mall, all surrounded by a manmade beach and a lagoon spread over 5 acres– all to be delivered before the historic Expo 2020 begins in the fourth quarter of 2020. Al Hamad Group is investing equity to finance the construction of the project and acquire a substantial stake in the 2,550 unit development while Schon Properties will retain a substantial number of units for recurring income, while some inventory is offered to select investors for sale. Al Hamad Group will be responsible for construction via their contracting arm, Dubai Civil Engineering. iSuites is being jointly developed by both companies and will be managed by Schon Properties. The branded hotel apartments will be managed by international hotel operators to offer greater comfort to visitors. Part of the iSuites inventories will be offered to investors that offers a high return on investment. Sales of the iSuites are currently on as investors and buyers could now purchase a hotel suite or a service apartment that will be managed by international branded chain hotel operators and offers buyers a higher income of 12-15 per cent per cent.

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225-key AVANI Resort Al Marjan Island to open doors in 2019

AVANI Al Marjan Island Ras Al Khaimah Resort - Crowngate Groundbreaking... (640x427)

Global real estate developer Crowngate International makes a foray into the hospitality business with its highly anticipated $50 million project, the 225-key AVANI Resort on Al Marjan Island, Ras Al Khaimah. Set to be fully operational in Q3 2019, the AVANI managed resort will address the rapidly increasing demand for hotels in the affordable luxury category and is the first 4-star project on aspiring tourist haven Al Marjan Island. The launch ceremony was on held on location on May 21, 2017, and was attended by Abdullah Rashed Al Abdooli, Managing Director of Al Marjan Island LLC, and Haitham Mattar, CEO of Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority. The resort will rise from an impressive beach-front plot on View Island – seen as the heart of the man-made Al Marjan Island, an archipelago which extends 4.5 kilometres into the sea and is a key area of growth. With white sandy beaches as well as spectacular views of the neighboring islands and the Ras Al Khaimah coastline, the resort is set to appeal to local, regional and international leisure travelers. In addition to premium facilities such as two pools, spa, gym, and kids’ club, the resort will host upscale all day dining and poolside restaurants, and offer meeting and event spaces with a 200-people capacity. Recently, Crowngate International also announced that MINOR Hotels will manage the property under their luxury AVANI brand.

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