Landmark eyes 10 Islamic hotels by 2010
Dubai, July 1, 2008
Landmark Hotel Management, one of the UAE's leading hotel management companies, said it will launch 10 world-class Shariah-compliant hotels and serviced apartments across the UAE and Saudi Arabia by the end of 2010.
The move is in line with the company’s strategy to cater to the increasing demand for Shariah-compliant projects in the Middle East, said a top company official.
'Six of the ten upcoming projects will be launched in Dubai, two in Abu Dhabi, a four-star hotel in Fujairah and one hotel in Jeddah,' SM Sadique, managing director of Landmark Hotel Group, noted.
'All the projects will operate on Islamic principles, which means that they are alcohol-free, serve halal food, and provide a percentage of their profit to charity,' he explained.
He pointed out that the significant growth in the number of Arab and Muslim tourists and the corresponding increase in consumer spending by Arabs has boosted the demand for Shariah-compliant hotels in the Middle East region.
'Moreover, with the unprecedented growth being witnessed in the regional markets, we expect a further surge in Arab tourist inflow and a subsequent rise in demand for hotels that operate on Islamic principles,' Sadique added.
He said the hotels were being built to world-class standards and would offer a range of latest amenities, which would attract both Muslim and non-Muslim guests.
The market for Shariah-compliant hotels is expanding in line with the growth in the number of Arab tourists.
According to the World Tourism Organisation, travellers from the GCC spend over $12 billion annually on leisure travel. UAE travellers spend an average of $1,700 per vacation, which is $500 higher than the European average.
Moreover, with governments in the Arab countries increasingly promoting Islamic tourism, the private sector is also embracing this in order to diversify tourism.
Sadique stressed that Landmark Hotel Management was keen on increasing the mass appeal of Shariah-compliant hotels.
'Presently, the general perception is that Shariah-compliant hotels are only meant for Muslims; which is certainly not the case. There are several non-Muslims, especially with families, who thoroughly enjoy the quieter and cleaner ambience offered in Shariah-compliant hotels,' Sadique remarked.
'Through our forthcoming projects we are determined to broaden the appeal of Shariah-compliant hotels across the Middle East,' he added.
Landmark Hotel Management, under the umbrella of major Khalid Abdullah Al Ghurair Group partner Zenath Property Developer, was established in 1996 to provide a quality, well-serviced, affordable and luxurious hospitality experience to the business and leisure travelers to Dubai and the Gulf region.
Landmark currently owns and operates six high-profile hotels in the Middle East, three of which are Dubai-based, with more projects underway in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, India, Oman and Kuwait.
The group currently employs over 1,000 well-trained staff, ready to meet the challenges posed by the burgeoning Middle Eastern hospitality industry.-TradeArabia News Service