Hilton International has signed an agreement with Intertravel for the first Austrian charter to Oman’s southern city of Salalah. With one weekly flight to Salalah, the charter will fly an estimated 1,000 travellers from Vienna, Salzburg, Linz and Wien in the first season of this year. Supported by the Omani Ministry of Tourism, the venture follows the success of Salalah’s first ever Scandinavian charter, welcomed in October last year.
“Travellers can look forward to Salalah’s natural beauty, culture, tradition, spectacular landscapes, and the many unspoiled, white sandy beaches. Their experience will be made all the more enjoyable by the excellent services and facilities at our Worldwide Resort. Salalah is being recognised as a new destination, and we are now attracting other tour operators in Europe who are considering Salalah as a perfect new holiday spot,” said Samer Mashour, Director of Sales, Hilton Salalah Resort.
Intertravel identified Oman as an untapped destination of the Middle East and extended their operations to Salalah after one year in Muscat. With this new charter, they can heavily promote Oman as a unique destination to Austrian tourists. Bahwan Travels seals the deal as ground handler, overseeing all tourist activity from arrival in Salalah to departure, and arranging services and daily programmes involving local attractions.
The direct service represents a huge step forward in Oman’s national tourism initiative and will substantially boost international travel to one of the Middle East’s best kept secrets.
Commenting on its operations to Salalah, Michael Federspeil, Managing Director of Intertravel, said, “Salalah, and Oman in general, is rich in heritage. We saw an opportunity to allow tourists to experience a culture and environment that is unlike any other, and in doing so we are also aiding in the provision of sustainable income and trade for the region as well. We anticipate this new travel venture being a great success as more and more Europeans expand their holiday destination choices to the Middle East.”
Increased tourism in Oman is expected to help the economic growth of the country significantly. Such development will create education, professional training and employment opportunities for many thousands of Omanis, and is in keeping with the Sultanate’s strong Omanisation policies.
The Ministry of Tourism of the Government of the Sultanate fully supports the new air charter service and is giving it substantial financial and marketing support, in line with national tourism development plans. The Ministry encourages foreign investment into Oman that will work to capitalise on the nation’s tourism potential, and the increased numbers of inbound holidaymakers from Austria will bring great commercial and financial benefits to Salalah’s local economy. The influx of visitors will boost the earning power of local tradespeople, craftsmen, tourguides, and restaurants.
Austrian holidaymakers will be able to enjoy the natural beauty and historic sights of Oman’s southern frontier and magical land of frankincense, while luxuriating in the 143-room Hilton Salalah Resort, which overlooks the beautiful waters of the Indian Ocean.
Hilton Hotels Corporation is the leading global hospitality company, with nearly 2,700 hotels and 475,000 rooms in more than 80 countries, with 150,000 team members worldwide.
The 46-suite Qasr al Sharq, or ‘Palace of the Orient’ will become Hilton’s first palace property when it opens in May this year. Later this year will also see the opening of the first phase of a Worldwide Resort in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE. New Hilton properties are also under development in Doha marking the company’s first foray into Qatar, and the Arabian Peninsula’s first Conrad hotel in Dubai, in addition to a beach club, also in Dubai.