Tag Archives: Mark Willis

Accor successfully implements ALLSAFE throughout its hotels and resorts worldwide

Accor announced its continued action to lead the hospitality industry with the most stringent cleaning standards and operational procedures concentrated on guest safety. Following operational disruptions stemming from COVID-19, Accor has successfully reopened most of its hotels with 95% of them having already adopted the Group’s trusted ALLSAFE cleanliness and hygiene protocols jointly developed with Bureau Veritas. To date, Accor has successfully certified 65% of these hotels with the ALLSAFE label through a third-party review and accreditation process with professional auditors like Bureau Veritas, SGS, Clifton and Ecolab, and is working to have additional hotels independently verified as ALLSAFE compliant over the coming months. “At Accor, we are grateful for the trust our guests have placed in us to protect their health, safety and wellbeing and this is a responsibility we prioritise above all else,” said Chris Cahill, Deputy CEO Hotel Operations. “Throughout this difficult year, our hotel teams have risen to the challenge of enhancing their already stringent protocols and following increased public safety regulations while continuing to welcome, safeguard and take care of others; this remains at the very heart of what we do and who we are as hoteliers.” “Rolling out the ALLSAFE Program in our region has been a priority for us since its launch”, said Mark Willis, CEO Middle East & Africa. As we continue to welcome our guests with all the joy and expectation that travel brings, we want to ensure we keep them, and our team members, as safe and protected as we can along their journey.”

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Accor to open Rixos Jewel of the Creek in Dubai


Accor is anchoring the upcoming Jewel of the Creek masterplan in Dubai, UAE, with a fully integrated urban Rixos resort focused on leisure, entertainment, sports and food & beverage. Earlier this year, Accor announced its strategic partnership with Dubai Developments to manage two properties, namely the Mövenpick Grand Al Bustan and Swissôtel and Swissôtel Living Al Murooj; The upcoming Jewel of the Creek will illustrate the third property signed in less than a year. “The recent development witnessed in the nearby Bur Dubai and Deira districts, with major facelifts and redevelopments initiatives, are expected to further elevate the surroundings and will be incredibly beneficial to existing hotels in the respective areas”, said Mark Willis, CEO of Accor Middle East & Africa. “We are the largest hotel operator in Dubai and our partnership with Dubai Developments highlights our common goal to strategically develop tourism and meet the demand of today’s travellers in Dubai”. “We see this project as the ‘Jewel’ of the Jewel of the Creek development”, said H.E EngEssa Al Maidoor, General Director Dubai Developments, “Once our elaborated and strategic improvement plan is complete, the project will offer all elements to bring a true Rixos product to the Dubai Creek area, which will appeal to a larger target audience and vastly distinguish itself from the competition”. “We are very pleased to introduce this new property into Dubai, as we increase the presence of the Rixos brand in the UAE” adds Willis. “This revolutionary project is expected to transform the Port Saeed area of Deira into a destination with a vibrant urban centre featuring residential, commercial, hospitality, sports and recreational components.”

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Dubai Tourism outlines steps for post-pandemic recovery plan

Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) held a virtual meeting with key aviation and hospitality partners to discuss current and post-pandemic strategies and joint initiatives aimed at ensuring the tourism industry’s gradual return to normalcy. The meeting also discussed global efforts to minimise the transmission of COVID-19 and precautionary measures deployed to safeguard the health of communities across the UAE. His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai Tourism, commented, “It must be emphasised that the health and safety of our residents and guests will always remain our top priority as we continue to work with the industry and our government partners not just during this critical period but beyond, to develop innovative approaches, real-time responses, and proactive yet prudent initiatives to ensure that Dubai remains at the forefront of the world’s leading destinations in line with our strategy.” Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports, said, “As health and hygiene standards will play an influential role in encouraging people to travel, we have put in place a set of health and safety protocols at our airports including all necessary quarantine arrangements and the implementation of sanitisation and disinfection measures to reassure tourists that Dubai is one of the safest destinations to visit. We will also continue to receive incoming flights from select destinations, operate cargo flights, as well as flights to repatriate expatriates and guests to their home destinations.” Adnan Kazim, Chief Commercial Officer at Emirates Airline, said, “Emirates commences passenger flights between Dubai and nine destinations from 21 May – London Heathrow, Frankfurt, Paris, Milan, Madrid, Chicago, Toronto, Sydney and Melbourne, and we will also offer connections in Dubai for customers travelling between the UK and …

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Accor to roll out ‘ALL Safe Officer’ initiative across Middle East and Africa

Accor is pioneering a new guest safety initiative ‘ALL Safe Officer’ that will redefine the hospitality experience in the Middle East and Africa during these unprecedented times.The ground-breaking programme, which is scheduled to be rolled out in the coming weeks, will see every hotel appoint a health and safety officer who will not only ensure cleaning and hygiene protocols are implemented to the highest standards, but will be available to handle guests questions and concerns.These specially trained officers are the face of Accor’s new ALL Safe Accor Programme – a set of rigorous measures designed to protect and reassure guests that are being implemented at its 300 properties region-wide. The initiative is bolstered by Accor’s strategic partnership with global insurance giant AXA which, as of July 2020, will be providing guests at its 5,000 properties worldwide with free medical support that includes consultations with medical professionals by phone or in the location where they are staying. “The safety and wellbeing of our guests is always our priority at Accor and we regularly review and enhance our procedures and services to adapt to new circumstances or as improved technology becomes available,” said Mark Willis, CEO, Accor Middle East and Africa. “The COVID-19 pandemic has forced us all to change the way we live, work and stay and as the largest hotel group in the Middle East and Africa, we are taking the lead in reinventing the hospitality experience, introducing dedicated ‘ALL Safe Officers’ and a rigorous programme of transparent measures that give guests peace of mind and put their health first, which is what they now value most,” he added.

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Accor to takeover Muscat airport property and debut Novotel in Oman

Accor is set to introduce Novotel in Oman. It entered a new strategic partnership with Sundus Investments, to manage the 215-key Novotel Muscat Airport. The two-year-old property will undergo a modest revamp including décor and signage alterations to reflect Novotel’s signature contemporary-led brand experience, with further modifications including a reimagined lobby planned in the future. With some of the capital’s most ambitious mixed-use developments on the property’s doorstep and the new world-class Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre (OCEC) also nearby, the hotel will meet growing local and international demand for high-quality midscale accommodation. “Partnering with Sundus Investments to raise Accor’s first Novotel flag in Oman marks another significant step in our regional expansion strategy as we look to collaborate with leading developers in strategic locations where we can leverage our portfolio of dynamic brands, with Oman a priority market. Following this agreement we can showcase our takeover expertise and demonstrate the potential of our flagship midscale concept in a fast-growing destination, paving the way for more joint hospitality projects across the Sultanate,” said Mark Willis, CEO, Accor Middle East & Africa. Ahmed Al Ardhi, Chairman of Sundus Investments, said, “Our investment and development strategy is aligned to the Sultanate’s economic diversification plans as set out in Vision 2020 and Vision 2040, with tourism identified as a key growth sector, and as we consolidate our portfolio and embark on our next growth phase, we are partnering with leading international hotel operators such as Accor to ensure our hospitality projects set world-class standards.”

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