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St Regis Muscat in Oman ... among the new hotel resorts taking shape in the region.

St Regis Muscat in Oman ... among the new hotel resorts taking shape in the region.

$23bn hotels to be built in Mena by 2023: report

March 2020

More than $23 billion worth of hotel construction contracts are scheduled to be awarded in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) between now and 2023, the third annual AHIC Hotel Investment Forecast revealed.

According to research conducted by regional project tracking service, Meed Projects, in Q4 2019, the hotel development sector will be most active in Oman, Egypt, UAE and Saudi Arabia, making these the markets to watch in 2020.

Ed James, director of content and analysis at MEED Projects, said: “On the back of the more than 700 new hotels worth in excess of $53 billion having been built over the past seven years, the Middle East is rightly viewed as a high-growth region for tourism. Growing economies, enhanced infrastructure and the opening up of the sector have acted as catalysts for development.”

“In terms of the hotel pipeline, Saudi Arabia is the leading future market with just under $9 billion worth of projects planned to be awarded over the next four years,” said James. “This includes a minimum of 21,500 rooms, across 36 individual hotel, resorts and master-planned tourist destinations.

He explained: “The kingdom has made tourism and the opening up of its cultural heritage and pristine Red Sea coastline key components of its 2030 Vision. Self-styled ‘gigaprojects’ like The Red Sea Project, Amaala, Neom and the Qiddiya entertainment hub are set to transform Saudi Arabia and the region over the next few years.”

The UAE is in second place, with $7.6 billion worth of hotel construction contracts on the four-year horizon. Oman has hotel developments worth just over $2 billion in the pipeline, while Egypt has some $1.9 billion worth of projects set to be awarded by 2023.

The levels of investment revealed by the AHIC Hotel Investment Forecast over the next four years are testament to an incredibly buoyant market.

“New hotel resorts like Jebel Sifah and the St Regis Muscat in Oman, the Ritz-Carlton in Sharm El-Sheikh and the MGM Resort and Bellagio Hotel in Dubai are set to continue to make the Middle East one of the most vibrant and diverse tourism destinations in the world,” added James.

The regional hotel pipeline and the future outlook for hotel investment in the Middle East will be discussed in depth at the 16th edition of AHIC, which returns to Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai, UAE, from April 14 to 16.

AHIC 2020 features a line-up of more than 100 high-profile speakers and promises to bring together more than 800 hotel investors, major developers, leading financiers, and C-level hotel executives for three days of content, networking and events.  

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