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BTN Interview with Ramine Behnam , VP Development Europe Middle East & Africa, Minor Hotels

BTN Interview with Ramine Behnam , VP Development Europe Middle East & Africa, Minor Hotels

The fourth in a series of Interviews with Industry Leaders attending FHS Saudi Arabia taking place on the 29 April - 01 May 2024 at Mandarin Oriental Al Faisaliah, Riyadh. Today we speak with Ramine Behnam , VP Development Europe Middle East & Africa, Minor Hotels

Question 1: What are your core areas of focus when it comes to investment? I.e in the areas of innovation, sustainability, human capital and/or technology?

Our investment strategies in the hotel industry encompass a multifaceted approach to ensure long-term success and sustainability. This involves prioritizing innovation to enhance guest experiences and operational efficiency through technologies like Smart Room features and IoT-enabled devices. Additionally, a strong focus on sustainability is crucial, with investments in eco-friendly technologies and community engagement initiatives that benefit local economies and environments. Investing in human capital, including training, well-being, and diversity, is also paramount for creating a supportive and inclusive workforce. Leveraging technology for digital marketing, data analytics, and cybersecurity ensures competitiveness and adaptability in an ever-evolving market landscape.

Question 2: What is your outlook for the hospitality industry in Saudi Arabia and the wider Middle East in 2024 and beyond?

The tourism industry in the Kingdom, driven by Vision 2030, is experiencing significant growth with giga projects such as NEOM and Diriyah Gate boosting Saudi Arabia’s appeal. We are proud to have signed hotels for management in both destinations to support the long term tourism plans in Saudi Arabia. Other countries in the region, including Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, and the UAE, are also actively promoting their destinations. Business travel has rebounded strongly post-COVID-19, benefiting from the region’s strategic location and high-quality accommodations. Moreover, the Middle East is diversifying its offerings to include experiential travel, with activities like skiing in Trojena, exploring cultural sites in Oman, and enjoying attraction parks in Abu Dhabi contributing to its appeal.


Question 3: What does your panel/presentation/workshop at FHS focus on, and what will delegates be able to take away from your session?

FHS Panel: “The Key to Successful Hospitality Project Development in Saudi Arabia”

Success in hospitality projects in Saudi Arabia hinges on strategic planning and execution across various fronts. This includes leveraging market data for informed decision-making, investing in robust infrastructure and accessibility, and offering a diverse range of accommodations and exceptional guest services. Effective marketing, sustainability initiatives, and integration of cultural elements further enhance the appeal of hospitality destinations. Additionally, incorporating interactive spaces and iconic design elements enriches the guest experience, fostering memorable stays. By embracing these key principles, stakeholders can create compelling and sustainable hospitality offerings that resonate with visitors and contribute to the thriving tourism landscape of Saudi Arabia.

Question 4: What are you looking forward to most from your attendance at FHS Saudi Arabia?

Attending FHS Saudi Arabia holds great promise for industry professionals seeking to expand their horizons and capitalize on valuable opportunities. Key highlights include networking prospects to connect with peers and experts, insightful educational sessions offering actionable knowledge, and the potential to explore market openings and forge strategic partnerships. Ultimately, participation in FHS Saudi Arabia is anticipated to yield significant benefits in terms of professional growth, industry insights, and business development.