Movenpick doubles up

Movenpick Hotels & Resorts has announced plans to open five additional hotels in Dubai, as well as expand into Yemen, Palestine and Qatar.

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By  Sarah Campbell Published  November 3, 2005

Movenpick Hotels & Resorts has announced plans to open five additional hotels in Dubai, as well as expand into Yemen, Palestine and Qatar. The Swiss hotel chain set out to double its portfolio of properties in 1999, when it operated 35 hotels and 7,400 rooms. The company looks well on track to achieve this, and by the end of 2007 its portfolio will comprise a total of 73 hotels and more than 19,000 rooms globally. Of these, some 39 projects will be located in the Middle East alone. At present, Movenpick Hotels & Resorts comprises 53 hotels in 19 countries internationally and 25 properties in 9 countries across the Middle East, with no fewer than 20 signed projects currently either at the planning phase or under construction. “We believe that the Middle East in general has not fully realised its potential as a leisure or MICE destination. The trend is definitely on the up for inbound leisure and MICE markets from the traditional European and intra-regional markets, and also from the emerging markets of Asia Pacific, and Eastern European countries,” Toufic Tamim, director of sales and marketing, Middle East, Movenpick Hotels & Resorts, told Hotelier Middle East. “Dubai in particular has captured the essence of this rapid tourism potential and is gearing up to meet this demand. Moevenpick will also be ready to meet the future demand and, with a growing network of regional and international sales offices, will at least be able to provide the necessary number of rooms on request that have so far been regrettably turned down due to our limited available number of rooms in Dubai,” he added. In Dubai alone, seven Movenpick Hotels are to be completed over the next two years. Over that same period, four other hotels are scheduled for completion in El Obour, Egypt; Sana’a, Yemen; Doha, Qatar; and Al Khobar, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The Dubai properties include the 716-room Movenpick Resort Oceana — The Palm Jumeirah; the 375-room Movenpick Hotel & Residence Deira; 294-room Movenpick Hotel Jumeirah Beach and the 465-room Ibn Battuta Movenpick Hotel. The Ibn Battuta property will be Movenpick’s first hotel development adjoining a shopping and commercial centre, and Tamim is confident that this combination offers a recipe for success. “The Ibn Battuta Hotel, which will be operated by Movenpick, will be a five star-hotel by excellence. We feel that by the time the hotel is ready and operational by end 2007/early 2008 the area around the Ibn Battuta Mall would have fast become one the new and many centres of Dubai, with the Media City, Internet City, lakes, Marina and Jebel Ali all within proximity. This, coupled with the new airport and The Palm Jumeirah and Jebel Ali projects, will sustain this hotel’s high occupancy and yield, be it from individual, corporate, group conferences, long-term guest, or leisure travellers,” Tamim said. Exisiting Movenpick properties are also expanding, in the wake of increased demand. This year, the Mövenpick Resort & Spa El Gouna, Egypt, added 115 new rooms and suites, as well as new spa and wellness facilities.

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