Landmark Hotels has announced that it will be launching ten world-class Shariah-compliant hotels and serviced apartments in the UAE and KSA by the end of 2010. The move is in line with the company’s strategy to cater to the increasing demand for Shariah-compliant projects in the Middle East.
Six of the ten upcoming projects will be launched in Dubai, two in Abu Dhabi, a four-star hotel in Fujairah and one hotel in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. All the projects will operate on Islamic principles, which means that they are alcohol-free, serve halal food, and give a percentage of their profit to charity.
S.M. Sadique, Managing Director, Landmark Hotel Group, said, “The significant growth in the number of Arab and Muslim tourists and the corresponding increase in consumer spending by Arabs have boosted the demand for Shariah-compliant hotels in the Middle East region. Moreover, with the unprecedented growth being witnessed in the regional markets, we expect a further surge in Arab tourist inflow and a subsequent rise in demand for hotels that operate on Islamic principles.”
“Moreover, the Shariah-compliant hotels we will be launching are being built to world-class standards and will offer a range of latest amenities, which will attract both Muslim and non-Muslim guests,” added Sadique.
The market for Shariah-compliant hotels is expanding in line with the growth in the number of Arab tourists. According to the World Tourism Organisation, travellers from the GCC spend over US$12 billion annually on leisure travel. UAE travellers spend an average of US$1,700 per vacation, which is US$500 higher than the European average. Moreover, with governments in the Arab countries increasingly promoting Islamic tourism, the private sector is also embracing this in order to diversify tourism.
Sadique highlighted that Landmark Hotel Management is keen on increasing the mass appeal of Shariah-compliant hotels. “Presently, the general perception is that Shariah-compliant hotels are only meant for Muslims; which is certainly not the case. There are several non-Muslims, especially with families, who thoroughly enjoy the quieter and cleaner ambience offered in Shariah-compliant hotels. Through our forthcoming projects we are determined to broaden the appeal of Shariah-compliant hotels across the Middle East.”