More budget, mid-market hotels coming to Dubai after Expo win

More budget, mid-market hotels coming to Dubai after Expo win
A third cluster of hotels is expected to emerge around the Expo 2020 site in Dubai.
Published: 8 December 2013 - 1:27 a.m.
By: Andy Sambidge

More budget and mid-market hotel brands will arrive in Dubai as the emirate looks for significant increases in tourists over the next few years, an industry expert has said.

Nearly 40 percent of the Dubai’s existing room supply are in luxury or upper-upscale hotels with only 10 percent in the upper-midscale and midscale segments.

John Podaras, partner at Hotel Development Resources, said Dubai’s hotel offering will also become increasingly more specialised.

Podaras said in comments published by Hotel News Now: “The increasing numbers of visitors will definitely see a proliferation of new mid-market and budget arrivals, something that the market has been talking about for a long time now.

"What should be interesting to see is whether the European and US trend towards the trendy lifestyle element of the new batch of midmarket and budget brands such as Motel One, Moxy Hotels, Citizen M etc, manage to make the transition to the Middle East.”

Dubai’s Department of Tourism & Commerce Marketing recently pledged to scrap the 10 percent municipality fee for 3- and 4-star hotels built between now and 2017.

His comments come just days after Dubai successfully bid to host the World Expo in 2020.

The six-month Expo is expected to draw 25 million visitors with anywhere from 5,000 to 12,000 extra rooms needed to be developed.

The Expo complements Dubai's Vision 2020 plan to attract 20 million visitors annually.

Dubai World Central, an economic district under development around Al Maktoum International Airport that will host the Expo, is expected to emerge as the third major cluster of hotels in Dubai, after the beach and the central business district.

According to the Hotel News Now report, the Rezidor Hotel Group is already pursuing opportunities for its Radisson Blu and Park Inn by Radisson brands in the area, citing Elie Milky, director of the group’s operations in the Middle East/Africa.

“We are working closely with owners on a number of opportunities and expect to see more activity arising from the area,” he was quoted as saying.

Christophe Landais, managing director of Accor Middle East, also told the website: “We are most evidently talking to and working with various investors to further develop our network in this strategic location to meet the expected demand of 20 million visitors by 2020.

"At this stage we do not have any specific project under discussion related to Dubai Expo 2020; however, if we have they will be developed at strategic location with business sustainability over time."

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