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AHIC 2014: Marriott International strengthens Middle East presence

AHIC 2014: Marriott International strengthens Middle East presence

Strengthening its position across the Middle East and Africa as the hospitality company of choice, Marriott International announced 14 new signings at the 2014 Annual Hotel Investment Conference (AHIC). The new properties will see the organization expand its regional footprint in the UAE, and Saudi Arabia spanning several brands including Marriott Hotels, Renaissance Hotels and Residence Inn by Marriott to name a few.

The company also announced further growth to its African pipeline with the signing of 8 new properties under the Protea Hotels brand.

Marriott International has also announced the signing of a long term agreement with RDK Tourism Investment LLC to manage the new 312-room Renaissance Dubai Downtown Hotel scheduled to open in 2015. The third Renaissance Hotel in the region, the brand is known around the world for encouraging guests to discover something wonderfully new whether traveling for business or pleasure. In addition, Marriott International has confirmed a further two properties will open in the new outdoor lifestyle concept by Meraas Holding; Dubai Marriott Hotel Citywalk and Marriott Executive Apartments Dubai City Walk.
Marriott International currently operates a total of 12 properties spanning five brands in the UAE. Today’s announcement will add a further six properties to Marriott International’s UAE presence comprising 2,738 rooms across six brands in Dubai and Abu Dhabi

Saudi Arabia will see Marriott International boost its presence in the Kingdom’s extended stay segment with the signing of Courtyard by Marriott Al Khobar and Residence Inn by Marriott Al Khobar. Furthermore, Marriott International confirms it is set to open the Residence Inn by Marriott Jazan in Q4 of 2014, bringing the total operational ‘Residence Inn by Marriott’ properties to three region-wide by the end of 2014; Courtyard by Marriott properties will also increase from five to six properties by early 2015.  Marriott International also recently signed a new Marriott Hotel in Jeddah: the Jeddah Marriott Hotel has 283 rooms and is projected to open in late 2016.

Commenting on the signings Alex Kyriakidis, President & Managing Director, Middle East and Africa Continent, said: “Marriott International’s fast growing footprint across the Middle East and Africa is a response to the huge potential we continue to observe in the region. At present the Gulf economies are experiencing strong GDP growth which translates into opportunity for our industry. Naturally, as a leading player in the hospitality industry, Marriott International is keen to convert these opportunities. The recent acquisition of Protea Hospitality Holding is a case in point and while we are now the largest hotel operator in Africa our ambitions are undimmed.

Protea Hotels sees further growth across Africa

Marriott International’s acquisition of Protea Hospitality Holding is yielding positive returns as the company signs a further eight hotels, adding an addition 890 rooms to its Africa pipeline. In addition, the company confirmed five hotels are set to open by Q1 of 2015 including properties in; South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana and Rwanda.

Kyriakidis added: “The beauty of our portfolio is that it caters to every audience, budget and need. We work hard to deliver excellence to both the upscale and midscale traveler. We continue to see a steady increase in demand for long-term lodging and extended stay for those on temporary assignment or relocation, and we believe that Residence Inn, Courtyard by Marriott and Marriott Executive Apartments are ideally placed to cater to guests needs. In the upscale segment we are expanding our portfolio with the further introduction of the Renaissance and Marriott Hotels brands.”

Marriott International also confirmed several new properties will open in early 2015 including; Residence Inn By Marriott Jazan, Residence Inn by Marriott Kuwait and Courtyard by Marriott Abu Dhabi. The company further announced that the 200-room, upscale Marriott Hotels & Resort in Erbil, Iraq has been upgraded and re-signed to a JW Marriott Hotel, while the 75-unit deluxe Marriott Executive Apartments property will remain as previously announced. Both are planned to open simultaneously in 2017. These two properties will mark Marriott International’s entry into Iraq