Morocco’s flagging tourism industry has been given a boost following an announcement by the Ramada hotel group of plans to build eight new hotels across the country.
The locations of the new properties would in Marrakesh, Rabat, Casablanca and Agadir, and will come as a welcome boost to the country’s tourism economy, which has shrunk to 2007 levels due to the global downturn.
The announcement was made by Fawaz Majid Al Badr, CEO of Al-Tameer investment group, the Kuwaiti owner of Ramada, at the opening of the new Ramada Fes.
The new $14m (€10.4m) Ramada Fes features 133 rooms, three restaurants and a spa.
The Moroccan government has laid out ambitious plans for the country’s tourism sector. In 2001, Moroccan King Mohamed VI set a target of 10 million tourists per year by 2010.
The plans included the creation of six major tourism sites on the Atlantic and Mediterranean coastlines and the creation of an additional 15,000 rooms in Morocco’s major cities.
Building work in six resorts of Mogador, Lixus, Mazagan, Saidia, Taghazout and the Plage Blanche is still underway.
According to official figures, tourist arrivals rose from 4.3m in 2001 to 7.8 million in 2008. Inbound visitors from France form the largest market - accounting for 1.7 million visitors in 2008.http://www.breakingtravelnews.com/images/uploads/hotel/Ramada_Agadir.jpg