Rotana signs deal on northern Iraqi hotel

4th Sep 2007

“Malia”, the prominent Lebanese holding group and “Rotana Hotels” the leading Hotel Management Company in the Middle East, announced the signing of a partnership agreement for the management of a 5 star 205 roomed hotel in the city of Erbil, located in the Iraqi Kurdistan region. The US$55 million plus hotel will be among a series of projects to be launched by Malia Holding through its tourism investment affiliated company,” Hotel Line”,.

This announcement took place during a press conference held at the Gefinor Rotana Hotel in Beirut during which Mr. Jacques Jean Sarraf, President of Malia Holding sal and Mr. Selim El Zyr, President & CEO for Rotana Hotels presented full details of this milestone project.

The event attended by local and regional media executives, highlighted Malia’s vision to expand beyond the local markets, in search of strategic regional investment opportunities. Malia’s quest for excellence made its decision to partner with Rotana Hotels, a natural selection.

Malia’s plans to invest in Erbil stem from the city’s economic, social and political climate which makes it an ideal destination for investments, particularly in tourism.

The Kurdistan area of Iraq has in fact gained a worldwide reputation of being a gateway to Iraq, a stable and thriving area with an increasingly prosperous population of 5 million. The region has 2 new international airports, a liberal foreign investment law that offers foreign investors.


The 5 star Erbil Rotana Hotel will be built on a premium 20,000 m? parcel of land strategically located in front of the large Sami Rahman park and between the convention center and Erbil Exhibition Fair. In addition to the 205 rooms and suites, the property will feature, among others, restaurants and complete recreational areas including Bodylines health and fitness club and a swimming pool.

Commenting on this announcement, Mr. Jacques Jean Sarraf, President of Malia Holding sal expressed confidence and excitement in the new formed partnership saying that “The prospects of the Erbil project will also benefit the people of Iraq through the creation of hundreds of jobs. Malia is enthusiastic about developments in the Kurdistan and keen on taking an active role in shaping the outlook of tourism and helping rebuild a strong and solid economy in Iraq”.

As for Mr. Selim El Zyr, President & CEO of Rotana Hotels, he in turn said “Year after year, Rotana Hotels is gaining strength and is imposing its position as the leader in the industry within the region. This is part of our strategic aim to have a property located in every key city in the Middle East and this goal is being steadily achieved through careful long-term planning and timely action. We are proud to have been chosen to manage this new spectacular 5 star property and our team is very excited about the opportunity to be in Iraq. We are confident that we will introduce a new dimension of hospitality in the country”. 


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