InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has signed an agreement with investors Saudi Telal to develop two new Crowne Plaza properties in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The new hotels will take the group’s KSA portfolio to 19 and will complement the 17 other hotels located throughout the country, which span across three of the group’s brands - InterContinental, Holiday Inn and an existing Crowne Plaza hotel in Jeddah.
Present at the signing ceremony were Mr. Mohamad Sulaiman Al Rajhi, Dr. Hassan Hegab, Mr Fuad Ahmad Al Azab, and Phil Kasselis, Vice President, Development, InterContinental Hotels Group, Middle East & Africa.
Located in the large eastern province of Saudi Arabia, Crowne Plaza Al Khobar will have 247 rooms including two penthouse suites and a wide-range of food and beverage outlets including a tea lounge, a specialty restaurant on the ground floor, a spacious all-day dining restaurant on the mezzanine floor and a Club Lounge on the 7th floor measuring 165 square metres.
Other features, tailored to the modern business traveller, include eight meeting rooms, a state-of-the-art business centre, a gym and relaxation centre with Turkish baths, juice bar, sauna and steam room.
Meanwhile, Crowne Plaza Al Madinah, situated in the central district of Saudi Arabia, is set to offer a total of 620 rooms, six multi-function meeting rooms, an extensive business centre and at least four diverse dining options.
While Al Khobar forms part of the Dammam metropolitan area, Al Madinah is located on the country’s popular west side and both are key destinations for the thriving coporate travel and religious tourism industries in the country. Crowne Plaza Al Khobar is expected to open by the end of summer 2007 and Crowne Plaza Al Madinah will follow in 2008.
Phil Kasselis, Vice President, Development, InterContinental Hotels Group, Middle East & Africa, said, ‘The signing of this agreement with Saudi Telal is testament to InterContinental Hotels Group’s commitment to Saudi Arabia as an established destination for both corporate and business travel as well as domestic and regional leisure guests.’
We are thrilled about the opportunity to expand the presence of our Crowne Plaza brand, which exactly fits the needs of the discerning business and leisure traveller for every level of meeting or event.’
Mr. Mohamed Sulaiman Al Rajhi, added, ‘We are very proud to partner with InterContinental Hotels Group in this venture which will really enhance the high level of accommodation for the increasing number of business travellers and other visitors we are seeing in Saudi Arabia every year. The Al Khobar and Al Madinah destinations are key for our country and we look forward to welcoming guests from around the world.’
The simultaneous developments represent the importance of the Saudi Arabian corporate travel market and both properties will make a significant contribution to InterContinental Hotels Group’s regional growth plan, which will add 7000 rooms over five years.
Saudi Telal is the hotels and resorts developer and manager for Sheikh Sulaiman Abdul Aziz Al Rajhi Group.